They've had a dramatic past kilts and tartan. From rural highlanders to the backs of royalty, through peace and war, present at moment which made history. And now, we get to the present and our part in it. We're not just a kiltmakers trying to sell you a kilt at the highest price because that's all that matters - no, to us, kilts and tartan are our lives and stories. In 2009 Gordon left his job to start GNK because he couldn't stand how industry forgot its roots and put profit over preservation, quality and passion. He puts his name to each and every kilt, because we have made sure they are in fact, the best. We are the only kiltmakers to train our talented makers under our own roof through Edinburgh Kiltmakers Academy courses - through doing this, we have set the highest standard of kiltmaking possible and, equally, standardised the craft to ensure every customer gets the very highest quality kilt, tailored lovingly to last a life time by incredibly skilled hands. It's not just how to make a kilt we teach though, it's how to be a strong supportive community of kiltmakers, with a passion and love what you make - it's about ensuring it's future and making sure it's a good one.
Learn more about the love and care we put into our kilts here!
In 2021, handmade kiltmaking was added to the Heritage Craft Associations list of Endangered Crafts. In short, there are not enough people, particularly young people, taking on the skill and forging a career in it to keep up with the demand. We are thankful for this recognition but equally, we are going to do everything we can to get the craft of it and give it a safe and promising future. In our book, a kilt isn't a kilt unless it's handmade. We tailor to ensure your kilt lasts a lifetime...despite the cruel nature of time causing us to expand more often than not...and we use 100% wool tartan and tweed from Scotland's finest mills, whom we have exceptional relationships with.
Speaking of demand...
Like Scott's novels enticing his contemporaries and the generations which followed to get on board with kilts and tartan...the ever popular TV and novel series "Outlander" is today's "Balmoralisation". There is a thirst for Scottish culture coming from all over the globe which we are so excited by and grateful for. We are often asked "I'm not from Scotland but I want to wear a kilt, is that cultural appropriation?" - simply, no. You want to wear a kilt to feel what it's like, that impeccable tailoring, that swing. To be a strong Jamie Fraser or a legendary Rob Roy for a moment. You want to celebrate Scotland for a moment through what you have on. That's support and we love meeting those home grown kilt wearers and those from further afield appreciating our story and culture alike. We love to see our customers put on a garment that has been lovingly handmade by one of our talented and hugely passionate makers, and walk a wee bit taller, with more pride in their step and thoroughly enjoying all eyes on them for all the right reasons.
Tartan is also taking on new shapes and forms. In 2008 tartan was defined and protected by Law, The Scottish Tartans Act 2008, and the Scottish Register of Tartans born. Currently there are 13000 and counting tartans on the register, from the Clan Campbell to the Pandas at Edinburgh zoo - all represented in colour and line. And we've added a few beautiful designs on their ourselves including some big names such as Celtic FC, the Scotland National Football Team, The University of Edinburgh plus a number of wonderful new family tartans also.
The present is bright, despite the challenges of recession, global pandemics and the likes....
but The Future, will be even brighter.
Are you ready to make a kilt part of your story?
Take a look today right here