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  1. #1
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    Accessorizing a Ferguson Weathered

    So, I finally got the Ferguson Weathered kilt that I've wanted since I started kilting years ago. But, now that I have it, what color accessories would look good with it? Most of my various items are selected with my blue and green tartans in mind. I own kilts in the Scottish National, Freedom/Gold Bros., and Clergy Ancient tartans. Those are all quite different from my newest in terms of color.
    My white evening sporran looks nice with it, but my brown day sporran just blended in. So should I look into a black one? Then, what about sock and flash colors? Obviously brown and grey hose look fine, but what others? Same with flashes: red and white are good, but I don't want to end up all matchy.
    Gloria Patri! Thither Yond! Jeremiah! Do-lang Do-lang! (All things I have shouted in a charge.) http://www.orderoftherouseclan.proboards.com

  2. #2
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    The thing to keep in the back of your mind is that there is no requirement to use the colors of the kilt at all. No rules, no laws, no one will give you a ticket for doing something wrong.

    If you go to a Scottish Wedding all the guys will have the same jacket, vest, shirt, tie, hose and shoes. Yet each will be in his own Tartan. And it works.

    If you approach it from an artists standpoint, the kilt should be allowed to stand out from the rest of the outfit, so using the same or complementary colors pushes the kilt into the background.

    Some will find one of the minor, accent colors in the kilt, and use that as the basis of color coordination. Some don't think about the kilt at all and coordinate the rest of the outfit.

    It's about looking in the mirror and deciding if what you are wearing looks good to you. No one else can make that call. Look at the whole, not just the kilt. Does the hose color you chose work well with the shirt or perhaps with the tie? Do the colors of those items clash or complement each other?

    Most guys today have spent very little time looking at themselves in a mirror. They pull on blue jeans, a T and runners. The same every day. One guy on the street looks much the same as every other guy. Or they dress in a way that makes them stick out as 'different'.

    But color coordination is one of those "secret girl classes" that guys don't usually get in school. It is often only when they begin to wear a kilt that they notice or pay attention to color for the first time.

    Sort of like a guy who has been in the military all of his adult life. He retires and wakes up one morning and does not have the exact same thing to put on. "What, I can wear red? Plaid? Hey, when did they invent stripes?"

    So really, the best advice is to put one outfit on. Take a look in a mirror and make up your own mind if the colors work together or not. If you want, and like, the matchy matchy color scheme, then wear it. Do you like monochrome? Or do you like color and texture and variety?

    About the worse thing you can do is imitate the look found on those sites that advertise "The Complete Scottish Highland Outfit." Very seldom will they be what those in the Scottish Highlands actually wear.
    Steve Ashton
    www.freedomkilts.com
    Skype (webcam enabled) thewizardofbc
    I wear the kilt because:
    Swish + Swagger = Swoon.

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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Didymous View Post
    But, now that I have it, what color accessories would look good with it?
    Could you fill us in on what accessories you have (kilt hose, jackets, waistcoats, flashes, garter ties)? Are there particular colors of shirts that you might want to wear with it?

    Almost everything in my wardrobe would go with it (in the right combinations), but that tells you what you could spend money on, not what would be cheap and easy for you.

    For example, I could accessorize with a blue-gray dress shirt, Lovat blue kilt hose, burgundy necktie and claret garter ties ... even though there's nothing obvious in the kilt that points to blue-gray or Lovat blue. On the other hand, I'd avoid pairing it with my purple-gray shirt and plum kilt hose (which work well with the dark green of my Irish Heritage kilt) ... but those are about the only accessories of mine that I'd rule out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Didymous View Post
    My white evening sporran looks nice with it, but my brown day sporran just blended in. So should I look into a black one?
    As an alternative, you could look into leather accessories with metal cantles (chrome, brass, copper, etc.) which cause them to stand out from the kilt. I do that with black leather accessories on my dark kilts. If you'd prefer to stick with non-black leathers, an oxblood leather sporran would really pop with that kilt.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Didymous View Post
    Then, what about sock and flash colors? Obviously brown and grey hose look fine, but what others? Same with flashes: red and white are good, but I don't want to end up all matchy.
    What kilt hose and flashes do you already have?

    If you wear a brown tweed jacket, burgundy kilt hose, red necktie, white flashes, and white pocket square, you will look amazingly put together, without appearing matchy-matchy. But I could probably come up with 100 other theoretical combinations that would look equally well put together (and 10x the number that would suck).

    And bypassing the kilt for a minute, are there any colors you don't look good in?
    Trying to look good on a budget.

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  6. #4
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    I'd echo Steve's comments above.

    For example, I could easily see wearing this kilt with my Lovat green waistcoat and Argyll jacket, with Lovat green hose and black shoes. My hunting sporran probably would fade into the kilt like your brown sporran did, so I'd probably wear a black day sporran. Like Steve says, the kilt would stand out separate from the background of jacket and hose.

    Depending on the occasion, I might wear a tattersall shirt or a blue dress shirt and might choose a tie with some red in it (to pick up the red stripe in the kilt). On Sundays, though, I'd wear my black clergy shirt and dog collar.

    For a black tie event, with my black Argyll jacket and waiscoat I might wear charcoal hose -- but here's where argyle hose to match the kilt would make a striking statement, or claret hose a bold choice.
    Descended from Patiences of Avoch | McColls of Glasgow
    Member, Clan Mackenzie Society of the Americas | Clan Donald USA

    "We have this hope, a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul." (Heb. 6:19)

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  8. #5
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    I find it interesting how Reproduction/Weathered tartans, which are a relatively recent invention (mid-20th century), have carved out for themselves a somewhat distinct and unique role in Highland Dress.

    From Victorian times up until the 1920s tartans had fairly standard colours (which we now call "modern" colours) then in the 1920s a new colour-scheme emerged, originally called "vegetable colourings" (now called "ancient" colours).

    These didn't seem to have much impact on the sorts of jackets, hose, etc people chose to wear. It was black, dark blue, dark green etc for Evening Dress and grey or brown tweeds for Day Dress regardless of tartan.

    And so it was with Reproduction or Weathered colourings when they appeared around 1950: you would see them worn with the same outfits that people had long worn.

    But over the last few decades I'm seeing more people choosing all-earth-tone outfits for their Weathered kilts. Just to be clear, creating an outfit to match the colours of the tartan just didn't exist in the old days. No-one would have thought of such a thing.

    Anyhow here's a photo of what I'm talking about, a piper putting together a complete earth-toned outfit



    In contrast, here's an illustration from a 1938 catalogue. The colours of the kilt aren't repeated in the hose or the jacket, whatsoever. (It's actually a nearly identical jacket, showing the continuity of Highland Dress.)

    Also note that, as always, the shoes are black and the leather sporran is brown.



    Look how nice the outfit below looks! It's another example of how a charcoal grey tweed jacket goes with anything.

    You just can't go wrong with grey (like black and white a non-colour, and therefore neutral).

    Last edited by OC Richard; 13th May 19 at 04:10 PM.
    Proud Mountaineer from the Highlands of West Virginia; son of the Revolution and Civil War; first Europeans on the Guyandotte

  9. #6
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    Well, I debuted the kilt at a Mothers' Day gathering (my mother's side is where the Ferguson comes in) . I wore brown hose with red garter ties, a light blue shirt, a brown patterned tie, and a bottle green jacket. I tried to walk the middle line between complementary and contrasting colors.
    Gloria Patri! Thither Yond! Jeremiah! Do-lang Do-lang! (All things I have shouted in a charge.) http://www.orderoftherouseclan.proboards.com

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  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Didymous View Post
    I wore brown hose with red garter ties, a light blue shirt, a brown patterned tie, and a bottle green jacket. I tried to walk the middle line between complementary and contrasting colors.
    Just a word of caution:
    While that color combination would not raise any eyebrows in Scotland, it's difficult to coordinate that much color for an American audience. (And just to tie it back to kilts, I'll use tartans to explain what I mean.)

    If you want to mix multiple colors, there are things that make it easier, and things that make it harder.

    The first is how many "main" colors there are. For example, look at three well know tartans: Royal Stewart, Jacobite, and Caledonia. Which looks the best? If you put it to a vote, I believe that Royal Stewart would be the big winner. Why? All three share almost the exact same color palette....

    It's the ratios that make the difference. Royal Stewart has lots of red, somewhat less green, then smaller amounts of blue and yellow (black and white being neutrals). Jacobite has almost equal amounts of yellow, green and red, with a smaller amount of blue (white being a neutral). Caledonia has nearly equal amounts of red, green and blue, with a small amount of yellow (black and white being neutrals). Color coordination is easier if there are only one or two dominant colors. And by dominant, I mean how much real estate the color takes up.

    A blue shirt and a green jacket each own a significant amount of real estate. So your tertiary colors become the red stripe in the tartan and the red garters. (Fortunately, the kilt is dominated by neutrals: gray and brown.) It would be a little easier to pull off that much color (again, biasing towards U.S. sensibilities) if you made one of the major pieces a neutral, while making a smaller piece colored. For example, choosing a white shirt with a blue necktie, or a gray jacket with a green necktie.

    The second is how bright/muted the colors are. As examples, look at the Isle of Skye tartan, or the Maple Leaf tartan. With Isle of Skye, the green and purple are desaturated (or to explain it another way, they're tones of green and purple). By reducing the amount of color, it's easier to coordinate them. With Maple Leaf, the main colors are darker (or to explain it another way, they're shades of red and green). By making them darker, it's easier to coordinate them.

    It's difficult to coordinate multiple intense colors. It's far easier to coordinate with one intense color, where the others are muted.

    Why I'm concerned...

    As Steve Ashton stated earlier, "color coordination is one of those 'secret girl classes' that guys don't usually get in school." It seems to me that you're one of the majority of men who did not get the class. And I say that because complementary colors are a subset of contrasting colors. They're not two separate categories.

    Without seeing a photo, I can't critique your choices. And that's because there are a minority of people who inherently understand the underlying concepts of colors without knowing the language used to describe them. And you don't need to be an Einstein of color to make red, green, blue, brown and gray work together. But you probably have to be scoring about a B+ to make it work better than if you'd dropped one of the colors (blue or green, since it's hard to drop the other colors ... given the kilt).

    My caveats:

    I'm not an Einstein of color. (I'm about at the B or B+ level.) Due to my limited ability (and my complexion), I tend to play rather conservatively with color in my wardrobe. But I read and research a bit. It's easier to start with fewer colors and work up to more, rather than doing it the other way around. (Since I live in the U.S., I primarily focus on the advice geared toward men living in the U.S. Most of the people who see me out and around won't be assuming that my sartorial choices are acceptable in Scotland.)

    If you want to use that much color in your outfits, find someone whose sartorial choices you inherently trust (and whom you trust to be brutally honest with you), then run your ideas past them.

    U.S. men's fashion (color-wise) is based around the maxim of "less is more." So if you want to make more more ... you are bucking a long-standing trend. It can be done (and probably should be done), but it won't be easy.
    Trying to look good on a budget.

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  13. #8
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    Steve and others have given you good advice. My advice, for what is worth, is don't overthink the colours, do not wear loud/ heavy coloured/ heavypatterned shirts and try to let the tartan stand out all on its own.
    Last edited by Jock Scot; 15th May 19 at 12:33 PM.
    " Rules are for the guidance of wise men and the adherence of idle minds and minor tyrants". Field Marshal Lord Slim.

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  15. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karl R View Post
    Just a word of caution:
    While that color combination would not raise any eyebrows in Scotland, it's difficult to coordinate that much color for an American audience. (And just to tie it back to kilts, I'll use tartans to explain what I mean.)

    If you want to mix multiple colors, there are things that make it easier, and things that make it harder.

    The first is how many "main" colors there are. For example, look at three well know tartans: Royal Stewart, Jacobite, and Caledonia. Which looks the best? If you put it to a vote, I believe that Royal Stewart would be the big winner. Why? All three share almost the exact same color palette....

    It's the ratios that make the difference. Royal Stewart has lots of red, somewhat less green, then smaller amounts of blue and yellow (black and white being neutrals). Jacobite has almost equal amounts of yellow, green and red, with a smaller amount of blue (white being a neutral). Caledonia has nearly equal amounts of red, green and blue, with a small amount of yellow (black and white being neutrals). Color coordination is easier if there are only one or two dominant colors. And by dominant, I mean how much real estate the color takes up.

    A blue shirt and a green jacket each own a significant amount of real estate. So your tertiary colors become the red stripe in the tartan and the red garters. (Fortunately, the kilt is dominated by neutrals: gray and brown.) It would be a little easier to pull off that much color (again, biasing towards U.S. sensibilities) if you made one of the major pieces a neutral, while making a smaller piece colored. For example, choosing a white shirt with a blue necktie, or a gray jacket with a green necktie.

    The second is how bright/muted the colors are. As examples, look at the Isle of Skye tartan, or the Maple Leaf tartan. With Isle of Skye, the green and purple are desaturated (or to explain it another way, they're tones of green and purple). By reducing the amount of color, it's easier to coordinate them. With Maple Leaf, the main colors are darker (or to explain it another way, they're shades of red and green). By making them darker, it's easier to coordinate them.

    It's difficult to coordinate multiple intense colors. It's far easier to coordinate with one intense color, where the others are muted.

    Why I'm concerned...

    As Steve Ashton stated earlier, "color coordination is one of those 'secret girl classes' that guys don't usually get in school." It seems to me that you're one of the majority of men who did not get the class. And I say that because complementary colors are a subset of contrasting colors. They're not two separate categories.

    Without seeing a photo, I can't critique your choices. And that's because there are a minority of people who inherently understand the underlying concepts of colors without knowing the language used to describe them. And you don't need to be an Einstein of color to make red, green, blue, brown and gray work together. But you probably have to be scoring about a B+ to make it work better than if you'd dropped one of the colors (blue or green, since it's hard to drop the other colors ... given the kilt).

    My caveats:

    I'm not an Einstein of color. (I'm about at the B or B+ level.) Due to my limited ability (and my complexion), I tend to play rather conservatively with color in my wardrobe. But I read and research a bit. It's easier to start with fewer colors and work up to more, rather than doing it the other way around. (Since I live in the U.S., I primarily focus on the advice geared toward men living in the U.S. Most of the people who see me out and around won't be assuming that my sartorial choices are acceptable in Scotland.)

    If you want to use that much color in your outfits, find someone whose sartorial choices you inherently trust (and whom you trust to be brutally honest with you), then run your ideas past them.

    U.S. men's fashion (color-wise) is based around the maxim of "less is more." So if you want to make more more ... you are bucking a long-standing trend. It can be done (and probably should be done), but it won't be easy.
    Hummm, why so cautious? You have no bother about wearing the kilt which is hardly a common form of attire in North America, so why bother with North American sensibilities with your colour choices with the rest of your kilt attire? Wear the kilt and attire like its supposed to be man! The traditional Scottish way!
    Last edited by Jock Scot; 16th May 19 at 03:38 AM.
    " Rules are for the guidance of wise men and the adherence of idle minds and minor tyrants". Field Marshal Lord Slim.

  16. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Wizard of BC View Post
    The thing to keep in the back of your mind is that there is no requirement to use the colors of the kilt at all. No rules, no laws, no one will give you a ticket for doing something wrong.

    If you go to a Scottish Wedding all the guys will have the same jacket, vest, shirt, tie, hose and shoes. Yet each will be in his own Tartan. And it works.

    If you approach it from an artists standpoint, the kilt should be allowed to stand out from the rest of the outfit, so using the same or complementary colors pushes the kilt into the background.

    Some will find one of the minor, accent colors in the kilt, and use that as the basis of color coordination. Some don't think about the kilt at all and coordinate the rest of the outfit.

    It's about looking in the mirror and deciding if what you are wearing looks good to you. No one else can make that call. Look at the whole, not just the kilt. Does the hose color you chose work well with the shirt or perhaps with the tie? Do the colors of those items clash or complement each other?

    Most guys today have spent very little time looking at themselves in a mirror. They pull on blue jeans, a T and runners. The same every day. One guy on the street looks much the same as every other guy. Or they dress in a way that makes them stick out as 'different'.

    But color coordination is one of those "secret girl classes" that guys don't usually get in school. It is often only when they begin to wear a kilt that they notice or pay attention to color for the first time.

    Sort of like a guy who has been in the military all of his adult life. He retires and wakes up one morning and does not have the exact same thing to put on. "What, I can wear red? Plaid? Hey, when did they invent stripes?"

    So really, the best advice is to put one outfit on. Take a look in a mirror and make up your own mind if the colors work together or not. If you want, and like, the matchy matchy color scheme, then wear it. Do you like monochrome? Or do you like color and texture and variety?

    About the worse thing you can do is imitate the look found on those sites that advertise "The Complete Scottish Highland Outfit." Very seldom will they be what those in the Scottish Highlands actually wear.
    Well said Steve. Bravo!

    Some of the best advice that you have ever given on this website, in my humble opinion and I find your last paragraph particularly pertinent.
    " Rules are for the guidance of wise men and the adherence of idle minds and minor tyrants". Field Marshal Lord Slim.

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