Kilt, Black Watch tartan

Gallery Tartan kilts

Black Watch tartan

The tartan

Black Watch may very well be the number two tartan in popularity - after Stewart Royal. It is a universal tartan and therefore for any man to wear. Women will wear it too, because it is very often used for kilted skirts or just skirts. You may also see it used in interior design. The main colour is green/blue but on many of the pictures below it was necessary to lighten up colours in Photoshop, or the kilt had appeared black. Hence the name Black Watch.

The kilts

In this gallery there are three different kilts in Black Watch tartan, starting out with a 5-yard off-the-peg kilt from Irish company, O'Neil of Dublin.
The next kilt is from Heritage of Scotland, a 5-yard kilt made-to-measure.
Kilt #3 is a very cheap kilt from British Tartanista.

You'll notice that the tartans are not 100% identical. This is due to the fact that several varieties of the Black Watch tartan exist and that colors may vary from mill to mill and even from production to production. Also the fabric plays a role. No doubt, the tartan used for the Tartanista kilt comes from Pakistan or China and might not be 100% correct.

O'Neil of Dublin kilt

5 pictures

The fabric is 10 oz. wool, meaning it is a lightweight kilt. The length is 23". Something special is that it is not lined, which you can see on picture #2. Probably it is not needed, due to the lightweight tartan. The sewing quality is excellent, however. And so is the fabric. O'Neil has an assortment of men's kilts in four tartans, Black Watch being one of them.

Heritage of Scotland kilt

8 pictures

The kilt is branded John Morrisom, being once the name of Heritage of Scotland's bespoke kilts, but today the company will use this designation for ladies' ready-made kilts only and unfortunately, they are no longer offering kilts made-to-measure. The length is 23" and the fabric is 16 oz. wool.
In some of the pictures, #2 and #3, it is worn with accessories for dress-up events.
If you compare this kilt with the O'Neil kilt above, it is obvious that the O'Neil kilt has more, but not as deep pleats. Just two different ways to handle 5 yards.

Tartanista Value Kilt

5 pictures

The kilt is a 5-yard Value Kilt. It is cheap, really cheap. If your waist size is that of a teen-age boy, 30", it can be yours at £16.95. If you are a man with a little more substance (34-42") it is £22.95. With three tartans, one of them being Black Watch, you can, besides 24", also have it 22" and 26" long. I went for the short version, which I could wear either at shortest correct length (one inch above knee) or a tad shorter.

But what do you get for that little money? That was what I wanted to find out. Well, that the pleats are NOT sewn down, I could tell from the picture on their website. But it is lined and the thread which keeps it in place, cleverly also keeps the pleats together and thereby gives you the feeling of a fell.
The kilt has three buckles and straps of reasonable quality. Two straps of a better quality had been better than these three.
However, the real problem is the sewing quality which is pretty inferior. This kilt litterally falls apart! And then there is the fabric. Acrylic fabrics tend to peel, but this kilt with its "10 oz. 100% acrylic" fabric does it by far more than any other kilt, I have been wearing.

If you nevertheless buy this kilt, I suggest that you
1) never ever wear a sporran with it. Keeping a sporran away from the front apron should help against peeling.
2) always wear it with a belt/never go commando with this kilt. The straps or buckles might fall off while you are wearing it.

Value for money? No way.

I have been dealing with Tartanista several times and have a very good impression of the company. Freight is cheap, delivery fast and quality good, this non-value "Value" kilt being an exception. Pictures are showing the kilt when it was new.