Kilt Accessories for the Modern-Day Man
Men’s fashion and especially men’s fashion accessories are often overlooked and under-appreciated. Yet, more often than not, a man’s outfit makes the biggest impact during a first meeting, even more so than physical features and personality. Being fashion-forward is no longer being considered as feminine with men ruling the catwalks and sidewalks of the world in perfectly tailored outfits.
Kilts are taking the world, and especially certain parts of the USA, by storm and so too the accessories that come with it. When it comes to modern takes on the traditional kilt, there are no rules regarding what you can and cannot accessorize with, only opinions. It is important to remember that unless you are a member of a pipe band, military regiment or another quasi-military group, your kilt is not a uniform and you are free to accessorize it how you please. There are a couple of kilt accessories with a long history that is still commonly worn with kilts today.
Historically, before the introduction of the tailored kilt in the late 18th century, some sort of belt was needed to prevent the kilt from falling down. Today you no longer need a belt to hold up your kilt but a lot of wearers like them because they not only look great but also allow you to hang things from them like a sporran, a whiskey flask or even a sword. A modern, tailored kilt is fastened about the body securely with buckles and straps. The belt worn is purely decorative and are generally fairly wide and made from black or brown leather.
Traditionally, kilts were made without pockets for carrying things such as money or car keys. A pouch known as a sporran, which is usually made from black or brown leather, is worn for this very reason. Sporrans come in a wide variety of styles ranging from simple leather to those trimmed with fur and metal. Often the kilt-wearer chooses his sporran depending on the occasion with the more detailed ones being considered the best choice for evening wear. The sporran is generally suspended from a narrow sporran belt or directly from the kilt belt by means of special loops. While many modern-day kilts come with stylish back and side pockets, decreasing the need for a sporran, many wearers still opt to use them for decorative purposes.
A sgian-dubh, a small knife, is often seen tucked into the top of the kilt hose which is commonly worn with the kilt. The sgina-dubh has its historical origins as a type of utility knife. and comes in a wide variety of designs ranging from plain to very elaborate with silver and gemstone designs. A longer knife, known as a dirk is sometimes worn hung from the kilt. On the front of the kilt you will often see a kilt pin, frequently adorned with a tiny decorative clan crest or other similar design. A typical rule for the placement of the kilt pin is that it must be two pattern squares over and up from the edge of the kilt fabric. Numerous styles of kilt pins exist and lend a sense of individuality to the kilt. Many modern-day jewelry items such as wristwatches are worn with kilts and are completely up to the discretion of the wearer.
It is important to reiterate that, unless you are in a band or military unit, your kilt is merely an item of clothing and you have free reign over how you wear it. How you accessorize your kilt is entirely up to you as is the decision whether or not to wear undergarments with it. There are absolutely no rules on what a man should or should not wear with his kilt, or indeed, beneath it.