Mitchell Kilt Hire ~NZ ~ Celtic Fabric & Tartan Importers
(Background represents, Mitchell (old or Ancient colours)
Tartan is a vibrant fabric with a living tradition. In concept it is both ancient and modern. There are Scottish, Irish, Cornish and Welsh tartans. Clan, Sept and family tartans. National and District tartans. Special tartans, even personal and corporate tartans.
Sold through our shop in Cambridge - Unicorns-n-Pheasants, 17 Empire Street (opening Sept 2012), are wonderful fashionable Celtic fabrics,imported by Mitchell Kilt Hire. These fabrics range in suitability for exclusive soft furnishings and durable upholstery as well as wall hangings, cushions fabric suitable for kilts, trews, clothing. We no longer weave special scarves or crib blankets in handwoven tartan made to order but can procure suitable items for you. We can organise on your behalf the supply / manufacture of tartan carpets.
Celtic fabric wares, Upholstery and home furnishing fabrics
can be supplied by the metre, or in kilt length, or in half (31m) or full pieces (62m).
Tartan Information Page
*Mrs Anne McLean, my mother and our
handloom weaver (shown above demonstrating on a table top loom),
passed on this year (2006) in the month (Sept.) of her 82nd birthday,
hence we can no longer provide handwoven tartan items.
The Scottish Tartans Society Tartan Search Page
Or try The Tartan Finder Page Tartan Finder by Colour Tartan Generator
Show me some New Zealand Tartans and others too ...
Tartan Fabric weights and styles.
Kilting fabric has a true selvedge that is normally used
unhemmed. Non-kilting fabric does not have a true selvedge and
must be hemmed. Not normally used for any kilts, especially NOT
mens kilts. Sometimes used for childrens kilts. Kilting fabric is
dearer than non-kilting fabric because it requires more care and
expertise during the weaving processes.
Natural and Synthetic Silk tartans.
Very light fabric, non-kilting, used for accessory style
attire and ladies wear, etc.
Plain weave tartan.
Light, non-kilting faric is available in 7 and 8 oz weights -
this is suitable for ladies sashes, and other uses where a true
selvedge is unnecessary.
Saxony tartan fabric.
Light, woollen fabric is available in 9oz & 10oz weights,
available in kilting and non-kilting fabric - this is suitable
for lightweight dancing kilts, ladies sashes, etc
Worsted kilting fabric is available in 10, 11 and 12 oz and
Reiver weights - suitable for dancing kilts, light weight gents
kilts (for indoor Scottish country dancing and use in hotter
climates). Can also be used for heavier sashes, and light plaids
(drummers, pipers, fly) and other attire - eg ties.
Worsted kilting fabric in 13oz (Braeriach) weight - suitable
for gents kilts and for heavier skirts for ladies, plaids and
Worsted kilting fabric in 16 & 17oz (Strome, Auld Reekie)
weight - purposely woven for gents kilts.
Worsted kilting fabric in 19-20 oz weight - purposely woven
for military and 0ther very heavy duty wear use.
Common references to tartan colours are:
Ancient / Old Colours
Dyeing of spun thread was once done with lichens, mosses and other vegetable matter. The colours so obtained tended to be more pastel shades and depending how well fixed, would often fade easily.
The development of aniline (chemical) dyes from coal produced a wider range of colours. They were brighter and easier to acquire and use. These were "modern" colours, and the original dye colours were referred to as "old" or "ancient". Of course the modern chemical dye manfacturers could also produce dyes that gave the same colours as the original vegetable dye. Virtually all cloth, except some home dyeing, is now commercially dyed using modern aniline dyes.
The terms Modern, Ancient etc have nothing to do with the actual age of a tartan sett or pattern. Tartans are being designed even today and are woven in ancient/old colours.
this is usually a tartan in the darker and brighter or intense
hues. For example Blue tends to be Navy and green a bottle or
forest green. Any tartan can be woven in modern colours even if
the sett was 600 years old.
Ancient / Old Colours
this is usually a tartan in the paler more moderate hues. For
example Blue tends to be Azure or sky blue and green a grass or
leaf green. Any tartan can be woven in ancient colours even if
the sett was 6 hours old.
this is usually a tartan in the pastel hues tending towards
the brown spectrum.
this is usually a tartan in colours representing considerable
exposure to the elements such as sun, rain, fading, peat stain
this is usually a tartan including a lot of white in the sett
after the old arisaid styles. Dress tartans are more specifically
for ladies wear and dancing kilts. They are also available in
Modern and Ancient shades. Clans, or families with their own
tartan do not always have a dress sett. Also there are many dress
tartans that have been specifically created for use as dancing
tartans and have names and patterns, not associated with the more
usual clan tartans. There are some dress tartans that do not
Some clans, or families have setts they call hunting tartans.
They can be in modern or ancient colourings. Sometimes a clan
tartan in modern colours is called a hunting tartan by a
Searching for a tartan?........
Or try The Tartan Finder Page
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