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  1. #1
    Join Date
    20th December 14
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    Montreal QC, Canada
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    Review: Various Products


    On the Evening of May 28th, I received my order from Stillwater Kilts. I had ordered the Economy Wool Black Watch, a "Premium" 3 Tassel Sporran with a leather strap to replace the chain, hose, flashes, and a belt.
    In a general sense, I am very pleased. The order was placed on a Saturday, and shipped out the next Monday. By Thursday it had reached its' destination in Woodstock Vermont, and from there was brought to me in Montreal by friends who were coming up for a wedding. Shipping time was therefore excellent, and as promised the items were shipped the next business day after the order was placed.

    Once received, I noticed that the kilt was badly deformed by the shipping process, and a simple steaming was not adequate. A full repressing of the pleats and ironing of the front aprons was in order, but once that was done, it was apparent that this was a very nice kilt, for the price. I would certainly order another, though I do wish they were available in something other than just even sizes, as a 43" would have fit me much better than the 44". Having a few different lengths on offer would be nice too, but it is what it is. I am also aware that Stillwater can do customer orders, but when it comes down to it, if I had the money and time for a custom order I would go straight to USAKilts and get a custom made one. So far the kilt has held up under any conditions I have thrown at it.

    The hose, flashes, belt and socks are all rather average looking and average in quality. I was not blown away by them by any means, but for the price I paid I am quite satisfied.

    This sadly brings us to the sporran. There are a few models available, and not wanting to look the pauper, I purchased the one labelled as "premium". Now this is where the problems started. First, the dye on the leather has transferred onto everything else I own. Formerly white dress shirts are now stained with black, and when I wore the sporran I had to avoid opening or closing it, as the dye would rub off on my fingers and get under my nails. After only a few days worth of wear, though, this became unnecessary when the inner half of the snap (the part attached to the flap of the sporran) came unattached and I was no longer able to close the sporran at all. This was at a wedding where I was the officiant, and quite embarrassing. The solution was to tuck the flap into the pouch, which then caused the rivet holding the middle tassel to break, so that tassel was no longer firmly attached...

    Of course, Jerry being Jerry, a replacement is being arranged. I truly do not wish for this review to appear as a negative comment on the services received; it is far from that. I would, though, suggest that anyone looking for a basic sporran take the time and save up the extra pennies for something of better quality. Perhaps something made in Canada, the US, or the UK. I am hopeful that this was simply a defective item and that the replacement will be sturdier; I truly doubt that any frugal Scot would be happy with a sporran that needs to be repaired or replaced after only a few days' worth of wear!
    Last edited by Mathew MacKillop; 15th June 15 at 12:39 PM. Reason: spelling, also added photos

  2. #2
    Join Date
    21st July 14
    Location
    Burien Washington USA
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    Well, Matthew, we live and we learn. It sounds as though you are happy enough with your kilt, hose and flashes, given the price you paid. The sporran, though, is utter garbage, and if it were me, I would not be looking for a replacement, I would be looking for my money back, so I could put it toward a product of acceptable quality.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    17th June 15
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    It looks like you ordered the sporran strap I was just looking at. Would you mind giving your opinion on the strap? How wide is it? Were the edges finished?

    Thank you for any advice!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    20th December 14
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    Montreal QC, Canada
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wareyin View Post
    It looks like you ordered the sporran strap I was just looking at. Would you mind giving your opinion on the strap? How wide is it? Were the edges finished?

    Thank you for any advice!

    Honestly, given the choice and with hindsight, I would have ordered both it and my sporran from elsewhere.
    The sporran strap is unfinished on the sides (and on the back), and I have figured out through trial and error that it is the strap, and not the sporran, which is transferring black dye onto everything it comes into contact with, including my hands if there is any humidity at all in the air (which, here in Montreal, means every minute of every day).
    There are other vendors who sell them for a similar price, but I'd inquire ahead of time if it were me to make sure that it is not the exact same product; even when it clearly is not (for example the one sold by USAKilts looks very similar on the surface, but the site states that it is made in North Carolina, so perhaps it will not have the same dye issues as the Pakistani one I got from Stillwater) I'd still check with those that actually have one to make sure you will be happy with it. After all, needing to buy another $20 strap is one thing; needing to replace expensive kilts that are ruined due to black dye stains is quite another.
    This last bit may not apply to you, but the absolute largest size offered at SWK is barely long enough make it around my 44" waist and not have the sporran hitched right up under the belt; I would have liked an extra few inches of strap. If you are of a similar size, I would suggest finding a vendor with a longer strap.

    Hope this Helps!

  5. The Following User Says 'Aye' to Mathew MacKillop For This Useful Post:


  6. #5
    Join Date
    17th June 15
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    Georgia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathew MacKillop View Post
    Honestly, given the choice and with hindsight, I would have ordered both it and my sporran from elsewhere.
    The sporran strap is unfinished on the sides (and on the back), and I have figured out through trial and error that it is the strap, and not the sporran, which is transferring black dye onto everything it comes into contact with, including my hands if there is any humidity at all in the air (which, here in Montreal, means every minute of every day).
    There are other vendors who sell them for a similar price, but I'd inquire ahead of time if it were me to make sure that it is not the exact same product; even when it clearly is not (for example the one sold by USAKilts looks very similar on the surface, but the site states that it is made in North Carolina, so perhaps it will not have the same dye issues as the Pakistani one I got from Stillwater) I'd still check with those that actually have one to make sure you will be happy with it. After all, needing to buy another $20 strap is one thing; needing to replace expensive kilts that are ruined due to black dye stains is quite another.
    This last bit may not apply to you, but the absolute largest size offered at SWK is barely long enough make it around my 44" waist and not have the sporran hitched right up under the belt; I would have liked an extra few inches of strap. If you are of a similar size, I would suggest finding a vendor with a longer strap.

    Hope this Helps!
    Thank you for the advice. I was hopeful that it was a much better quality product, but I'm glad I asked before I ordered.

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