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  1. #1
    Join Date
    21st June 22
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    Vancouver Island, Canada
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    Ready for a second kilt - ADVICE / GUIDANCE REQUESTED

    Greetings and salutations,

    Well, after my first budget kilt three years ago, I am ready to make a leap towards becoming a daily wearer (or as close as I can manage). My first kilt was an amazon $50 CDN utility kilt, 100% cotton (if that matters), which was good for coaching and embarrassing 15 year old boys. Having really enjoyed wearing it, I have wanted something I could wear during the course of my work day. The only problem I had with my cheapo Utility Kilt, was either a material issue or a lack of experience / expectations.

    The biggest issue I had with my cheapo kilt, was that I found sitting caused creases and bunching of the pleats in the back. Whether that is in a chair, or stuck in the car for a 3 hour trip, I found myself being self-conscious of the appearance of my kilt. Was I ever self conscious of just wearing the kilt? Actually, no... but appearance wise I am. I work in an office, sitting for most of the day, so making a step to buying a kilt with the intention of wearing to work and full day at a time I'd like to be confident in my appearance. Is creasing and bunching something that I need to accept and mitigate or is that greatly dependent on material? How does different material hold up? I always try to sweep the pleats when sitting down to reduce the amount of creasing and bunching. I did recently see a good video from USA Kilts on sitting in a car with a kilt, to keep it looking good, and I may have to adopt some of those tactics when I do full time wear.

    So deciding on where I should get my next kilt has been my mission the past many weeks. I want to make the right choice but am left second guessing and doubting my choices. Budget wise, I am trying to stick to around the $100 USD. I don't want to go too high in cost for what I consider to be a "trainer" kilt, that is, a kilt that I consider easily affordable to make sure it is something I like wearing throughout the year before spending the bigger bucks. I am also a heavy set guy who currently measures at a 46" true waist, trying to and actively dropping weight, so spending higher dollars for something that won't fit me properly at some point is not in my interest. I am planning to buy when I am down another 20 lbs from now (hopefully towards end of summer). Currently, I am looking at Utility Kilts so I don't need to wear a sporran. Sure, I could take it off (the sporran) when coaching, but I do like to keep things handy in my pockets when doing so.

    Utility kilt suppliers I have been considering have been Damn Near Kilt Em and UTKilts, as they both fit in my budget/allowance. I like UTKilts because Brice has tartan options for the utility kilts, not to mention they ship to Canada (unlike DNKE at the current moment). Does anyone have experience with UTKilts PV "Standard" utility kilts? How is that material for creasing and looking sharp throughout the day? Please remember I have no experience to compare material, weights, and yardages on. I have driven a Jeep YJ, I know what a Jeep Gladiator is like to drive, but I have never driven a Lamborghini.

    At some point I would love to be confident in my kilt wearing to maybe buy from USA Kilt or maybe Stillwater and switch to a sporran... or even commission my local kilt maker.

    Any comments and advice to the above would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    3rd January 06
    Location
    Dorset, on the South coast of England
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    I so wonder if you might be happier in the long run with a more expensive option bought once you have lost the weight.

    I have the luxury of being able to dismantle my kilts to make them smaller (due to my diagnosis of type 2 diabetes my waist is gently reducing under the influence of a lack of carbohydrate in the diet), but I have discarded kilts as being not worth the bother when the fabric has proven disappointing.

    A wool kilt is an entirely different structure to one of cotton - wool is malleable and the pleats swish gently so in fit and function is is distinctive. There are man made fibre fabrics which imitate the behaviour of wool and they are far more washable, which could be something to consider - but acrylic fibre is soft low density and doesn't do well in wear, and even worse if heated by an overly hot iron when being pressed plus unlike wool it is not safe near flames or intense heat. Poly viscose fabric gets far better reviews.

    There could be the option of buying second hand to get higher quality for less outlay - if that is something you might consider, to wear for a while and then pass on again or be able to afford to discard at some point in the future.

    You might consider wearing something other than a kilt when driving and then doing a quick change on arrival so as to appear with perfect pleats.

    Anne the Pleater
    I presume to dictate to no man what he shall eat or drink or wherewithal he shall be clothed."
    -- The Hon. Stuart Ruaidri Erskine, The Kilt & How to Wear It, 1901.

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  4. #3
    Join Date
    21st May 22
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
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    Hi! I think I can answer your question about UT Kilts standard utility kilts as that was my starter kilt (purchased on Amazon) and received in October, 2020, almost two years ago. I have been a perpetual kilter since I received my UT Kilts model and it was the black one (I don't believe it was the "BLACK OUT" model). It is a cotton/poly blend and although it's pretty resistant to pilling, it does pill to a certain degree. It is a RevK pattern with shallow edge-stitched, wide pleats. RevK or Reverse Kingussie is mirrored knife pleats from left and right, joining in the back in a reverse box-pleat (the two inside knife edges typically touch each other in the back).

    The fabric is very similar in my mind to the black pants I wore years ago when I worked in food-service.

    The UT Kilts garment has eight pleats on each side (16 total), widely spaced with about a one-inch inside pleat depth on each. They're about 3 inches from inside of one pleat to the outside of the next so they have about 2" spacing with a 1" depth.

    It has two rows of snaps on the underapron on left side and two rows on the right side of the overapron next to the two 1" buckles and fabric straps with metal reinforcing eyelets. Each set of snaps has one TOP and two BOTTOMS spaced an inch apart so some waist adjustment can be made. I've added further adjustments by adding a second set of matching TOP snaps to the left side of the overapron and an extra set of BOTTOM snaps to the right of the underapron since I'm going the other way in my girth (I'm slightly expanding).

    As to my other kilts, I bought in quick succession, two very disappointing acrylic kilts also from Amazon that mostly sit in the closet not worn, along with a made-to-order MacTavish Modern Red tartan traditional wool kilt that I purchased/received in March/April 2021, handmade in Glasgow. The wool kilt set me back quite a bit and it's my SPECIAL EVENTS kilt, with my UT Kilts utility kilt (and my recently finished dark blue cotton denim X-Kilt) being my everyday wear.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    21st June 22
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    Vancouver Island, Canada
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    Thanks for the replies. If I sounded scattered it's because I kind of am. I've been looking forward to this for a while and excited to actually make the move.

    As much as I would like to go with a higher quality more expensive kilt, my wife would rather I went with the $100 option until I know it's something which I would wear regularly... which I do understand. I did find some more information and insight into the PV material (good video from USAK on wool vs PV), as well as a couple other articles. In the end I think I just need to just do it...

    My biggest fear now is my buddies wife, and the encouragement I may give him into getting one to wear more regularly... lol... not as accepting of the kilt as my wife, and my wife doesn't understand why either... HAHA...

    Glad I have somewhere to dump my thoughts and work it out!

  6. #5
    Join Date
    27th March 22
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    Treasure Coast Florida
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    Something to consider

    For experimentation, you might want to possibly try an ex-hire kilt... this would require a sporran unlike the utility kilt. It would also give a chance to wear a wool or poly viscose kilt to see in your real life what is comfortable for you. If you search around, you may find something in your budget.

    I recently recieved an acrylic kilt in a hard to find tartan. It is comfortable, hangs ok and does not wrinkle anywhere near as bad as the cotton. It is quite lightweight though.

    The kilt belt in my avatar I purchased on Etsy (custom made) much more comfortable than the inexpensive ones and looks much better!

    Just a few thoughts from one fairly newbie to another...

    Whatever you decide on, wear it often, with confidence and a smile! Enjoy the comfort!

  7. #6
    Join Date
    10th December 06
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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    Buy the best you can afford

    My advice is to buy the best quality you can afford. My first kilt was handed down to me by my Dad and is 16oz wool from A&J Scott and Co in Aberdeen. I have limited experience with Utilikilts or the like, but from what I do know, (I own 2) I'll say that your issues with creases will continue, due to the fabric. I would seriously consider going for an EX-Hire kilt. If you go to Kilts4Less you can get an ex-hire kilt for a bit more than your budget, so you may have to save but it might be worth it in the long run. Here is a link to the Scottish National Tartan as an ex-hire for you to consider. I have used Kilts4Less once for a jacket and was very happy with the results they shipped to Toronto in about 3 days from Glasgow which was an added bonus.

    https://www.kilts4less.com/product/8...-ex-hire-kilt/

  8. #7
    Join Date
    18th July 07
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    North East Scotland
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    Scott the kiltmaker still going strong
    https://www.visitscotland.com/info/s...rs-ltd-p234721

    Alan

  9. #8
    Join Date
    2nd October 04
    Location
    Page/Lake Powell, Arizona USA
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    I agree with going with QUALITY. you can have any two of price, quality, or service. No exceptions.

    I'm saddened by all the cheapo kiltmakers out there.

    Look into USA Kilt's in their Casual model. I've owned 16 of them.

    I've owned 82 kilts to date...have some experience with VALUE.

    Don't know if it will work for cotton, but invest in a hand help steamer (any big box store) to steam out wrinkled pleats.

    Welcome to your new addiction.
    Ol' Macdonald himself, a proud son of Skye and Cape Breton Island
    Lifetime Member STA. Two time winner of Utilikiltarian of the Month.
    "I'll have a kilt please, a nice hand sewn tartan, 16 ounce Strome. Oh, and a sporran on the side, with a strap please."

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  11. #9
    Join Date
    5th June 11
    Location
    The Highlands of Eastern Oregon
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    Cool Pleater’s Good advice

    You have found the perfect place for questions such as yours and your question is actually important as I am confident many of us have encountered such issues when sitting for a long time, particularly in the car.

    My solution was perhaps odd to some but worked well for me. Wearing shorts or trousers while in the car, I stepped out at our destination and put my kilt on over the conventional lower garment, dropped “trou” and then adjusted the kilt to proper fit.

    Bearing the image of young men wearing their shorts too low as one extreme and a kilt belted at or above the natural waist line shows the space available for overlapping of the garments, temporarily. In effect the kilt becomes your changing tent.

    As to Pleaters perspective - I concur with her advice to work towards a proper wool kilt. I really respect her information as to fabric selection. I suspect she would find even light weight wool to be acceptable. Two of my kilts are a woolen blend used for school uniforms, one in Royal Stewart, the other in Stewart Hunting. My third, a full-dress kilt, is 9 yards of 16 oz. Strome wool and might outlast the pyramids.

    Currently you can find a lot of advice on wearing a “Great Kilt” which is just a double wide strip of fabric about 3-5 meters in length. If you purchase a light to medium weight of tartan then there is no tailoring as it involves no sewing, just practice at laying it out and pulling in the pleats, leaving the aprons flat. It may not entirely fill the bill as you envision it, but I find it tempting to contemplate. I may wind up with a fourth kilt. (My wife just gave me a dirty look. I wonder why?)

    Check the Internet and these pages. A bit of time in research and thought should open up a larger world of kilting than you expected to find.

    Be happy, be well dressed, walk with a bit o’ swagger.

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