Friday, November 27, 2009

State Tartans

I was snooping around the Scottish Tartan Authority web site last night. There are a growing number of USA state tartans. I am not sure how easy it is to get them but they are registered. Here is the current list:

Arizona, Arkansas, States of Carolina, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaiian, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa (has two), Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota (has two), Mississippi, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont (has two), Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin.

So you guys living or from those states get your kilts and get out in the world.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Making a Kilt Hanger

There are a number of ways to hang a kilt. I first tried to use the same hangers I use to hang p@nt$. Did not work too well as the grips did not have enough surface area or strength to hold a heavy kilt. I tried double hangers which worked but a little awkward. I had wooden hangers with a wide grip that could hold but it felt I was forcing the clamp on the thickness of the kilt. I liked the 4 grip hangers that were like my 2-grip hangers. Rather than buy them that way I found I could make them. I will now show you the process.

Go to Walmart and get their two pack suit hangers. They sell two types. One is the wide hanger (top to bottom) as shown in Figure 1. They also have a narrow hanger but I found it harder to work with and broke a few of them. Follow the steps below to complete the 4-grip kilt hanger.

Kilt Hanger
Figure 1 – Walmart 2-pack Suit Hanger

Kilt Hanger
Figure 2. Grasp the hanger and pull the rod out of the slot. Be careful not to bend and break the plastic or bend the rod too much. You will have to bend it a little. One side may be easier than the other. Once you get one end free don’t pull the rod out of the other side for the first hanger. Now do the same with the second hanger.

Kilt Hanger
Figure 3. Pull both clamps off of the rod of the second hanger. These are spring loaded and when you pull them off they can come apart. Try to keep both sides of the clamp aligned to make it easier to put on the other rod. Thread the clamp on the rod of the first hanger but first look at Figure 4.

Kilt Hanger
Figure 4. I apparently did not set the focus correctly as these macro shots are out of focus but you can see what is going on. When you thread the clamp back on make sure the rod goes through the clamp spring as shown.

Kilt Hanger
Figure 5. With the four clamps in position carefully put the free end of the rod back into the plastic hanger. Be careful not to bend the rod too much or break the plastic. The second hanger is now surplus but don’t toss it out. Put the rod back into the slot and save it. I broke one of mine. The plastic is not that strong. The failure on mine was where the hook connects to the plastic. My hook pulled out. I have about ten of these now and one failure is not too bad.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Kilt Night

A small group of us get together in Columbus, OH every month or two for what we call kilt night. We meet somewhere for dinner then hang out for a few hours. There is an earlier post from a kilt night at The Pub Polaris. We tend to stay with the Irish or British establishments. Last night we started at an Irish pub for dinner then ended up at a non-Celtic bar as we wanted some live music. Well as you can imagine walking into a non-Celtic pub in kilts caught some attention. On the way in one of our members passed two young ladies maybe 25 years old. One of them made some wise crack about the "hot" kilt. It was obviously not a compliment. He ignored the comment and joined me at the front door.

We go inside and see the party had been going on for some time. The Ohio State - Michigan game was that day and some patrons had been there all afternoon. One rather intoxicated lady saw the kilts. She became quite curious about them. One member of our group answered her question with "Good girls don't ask, bad girls find out for themselves". Well that was an invitation if there was one so she proceeded to kilt check the four of us. Now she did ask permission first but normally when I have gotten kilt checked they are done from the side or back. Nope, not this time; up the front. She was not disappointed with what she found. She bought us all a beer.

So this was the ice breaker for some of the other ladies sitting to the left and right of us. One lady was surprised she did this. She had never heard of a kilt check and she was not aware of what is traditionally worn under the kilt. She asked why we would wear the kilt in the first place. She liked my answer: "If we were in jeans this conversation would not be occurring so kilts are a great conversation starter". She then compared us to some of the ladies that come into a bar in provocative dress and discover the attention they get is from men that are undesirable to them. She noted this was an interesting reversal implying that we were "provocatively dressed" in this case. She noted that while we were getting attention it was not from women that would have been our first choice. Interesting observation.

I would have like to have stayed longer that night but it is a 90 minute drive home for me when I go to Columbus. I pulled out around 11:30pm to head for home. Another very successful kilt night in Columbus.

I would like to find a core group in Dayton for kilt nights but have not been able to find the interest or ideal location.

Kilt on!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Question

No, not "that" question. I have been asked several times if there is a convention in town. Someone sees a kilt and assumes there is an Irish or Celtic festival in town. Today the lady that asked me that question did so for a different reason. I was the second person she saw in a kilt within the hour. I was in a craft store at the time. She had just come from a cell phone store down the street. Someone was wearing a kilt. That is about the third time someone has commented about seeing others in a kilt around this town. The lady liked my kilt. She made the comment that it looked to be very "freeing". Now we all know what she meant by that!
In a previous post I made a comment about hearing giggles in response to my kilt. I was in a contemporary kilt at the time. Today I was in my Irish National from Stillwater Kilts. As I walked into an isle of the craft store a lady turned around and with a surprised look on her face when she saw the kilt. I left the isle and came up the other side. Two other ladies joined the first. They were making some wise crack about the kilt. They apparently did not know I was on the other side of the isle. I was tempted to swing back around into their isle just to see what new expression I could catch on their face.

Speaking of that prior post, I did not go back to the movie theater as planned. I decided to wait until the next round of movies were released yesterday. I plan on going back on Tuesday as they have a discount that night.

Kilt on!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Anohter Kilt Blog

I found another kilt blog named "Henry's blog about kilts".

Thursday, November 12, 2009

New Solid Green Kilt

I ordered a heavyweight solid green kilt from Stillwater Kilts. The kilt arrived today. This is actually my first heavy wool kilt. The color is a dark green. Now I have to figure out what to wear with it. I am not very good at picking colors that go together. I am the geek nerd you see wearing black pants with a navy blue sport jacket. Ok, so you see where I am coming from. One of the kilt boards I frequent have had many discussions of the color of kilt hose to wear with what. A lot of you can't wear that color because that is for pipe bands, or some other such reason as to why a particular color can not be worn. The problem is when I look for kilt hose I find very limited colors available. The last time I went for kilt hose I ended up getting solid color soccer socks from the local sporting store. They had more color options but unfortunately not the nice thick wool socks which are nice in the winter.

As for shirts I know different shades of the same color can be a problem. A very light shade of green may go with this dark green kilt. Other shirt color combinations that I think will work are off white or beige with kilt hose of the same color (or as close as I can get). For Christmas functions a red shirt and red kilt hose maybe? Of course the shade of red will never match between the shirt and hose. Maybe I am more concerned about this than I should be.

As for kilt jackets it appears you have black and that is about it. USAkilts have some argyle jackets in different colors. Those jackets are expensive so some have taken to modifying regular blazers and sport coats. I am game for that. The local Goodwill is an option for finding something to experiment with. I also found this website for blazers: . They have a lower cost jacket also. My thinking is to go with one of the red or burgundy colors for this green kilt?? I am taking a risk I may screw it up if this is my first jacket modification but such is a good education. There are articles on making such modification on the web and on the kilt forum I visit.

I have a second wool kilt on order from the BOTK group. It is a special order in a tartan they registered. It will have blue in the tartan so will need a jacket for it also. I want to wear that one for more dressed up occasions.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Last night I attended TSO for my third year. Of course went in a kilt as I have done in previous years. The first year I wore a denim kilt from Union Kilts. That was a very cold night with wind and temperatures in the low 20's. That kit has a lot of material so it was warm. The second year I wore my USA Kilts American Tradition. This year I wore my Irish National tartan from Stillwater Kilts. We had very warm weather this year for November. Temperature was 60F and maybe lower 50's when the show was over.

I got a lot of good comments this year. More than last year. The kilt was a good conversation starter with the rather attractive lady sitting next to me. This was her first TSO show. TSO knows how to put on a good show so I am sure she is now hooked and will be back next year.

Only got one "nice skirt" comment from some guy that appeared to have too many beers even before the show started.

On the way out, walking through the parking lot, I passed a very attractive blonde. She was on her cell phone and as she turned around I was about five feet from her when she spotted the kilt. With a big smile she said "Nice!". I thanked her and continued on my way.

I thought I might see a few Utilikits this year at the show but did not.

I plan on going back for next year's show.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Went to the movie Amelia last night. I have always had an interest in her story. This movie was on her life and not just centered around the tragic 1937 flight. I liked the movie but again I have an interest in her story. Ok, what does this have to do with a kilt. Well nothing really other than I wore my tan Alphakilt. I attended the late show so not many people in the theater. I did get a number of giggles from ladies of various ages. I have had that happen before but this time a little more than normal. I wonder if I would have gotten the same reaction in a more traditional tartan kilt. Maybe time for an experiment. Go back to the same theater next week, same time, wearing a traditional tartan kilt and see what happens. If I don't get busy with something else I will consider doing this next week. On Tuesday nights this theater has reduced ticket prices so it is a good night to go.

For others out there reading this blog what have been your experience with reactions to contemporary kilts vs the more traditional tartan?