Labhran Highland Wear Style Blog

Vintage Baron of Kilcoy Sterling Silver Bonnet Badge

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Baron of Kilcoy Sterling Silver 1974 Bonnet Badge

Edinburgh hallmarked sterling silver glengarry badge made by Hamilton & Inches. Fully hallmarked in Edinburgh sterling silver 1974. This rare badge belonged to the late Thomas Ian Robinson who in 1969 became the Scottish Feudal Baron - Robinson of Kilcoy. He and his wife lived at Kilcoy Castle which has a great history with the MacKenzie clan.

A Scottish feudal barony (also known as prescriptive barony) used to be attached to a particular piece of land on which is the "caput" (Latin meaning 'head'), or the essence of the barony, normally a building, such as a castle or manor house. Accordingly, the individual - irrespective of sex - who owns the said piece of land containing the "caput" was the Baron or Baroness. Unlike England's system of hereditary peerages - which are, in the main, passed down the male line - Scottish feudal baronies may be passed to any person, of either gender, by inheritance or conveyance. Scottish Prescriptive Barony by Tenure was, from 1660 until 2004, the feudal description of the only genuine degree of title of UK nobility capable of being bought and sold (along with the Caput, or property), rather than passing strictly by blood inheritance.

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Kilcoy Castle

Kilcoy Castle is a 17th-century castle near Muir of Ord and Tore on the Black Isle, in Ross and Cromarty, Scotland. Kilcoy Castle is a ‘Z’ plan fortalice dating from no later than 1618 and possibly founded as early as 1580 (contemporary with Dalcross Castle QV). The castle was built beginning as eary as 1580 by the Stewart family, and completed by Alexander Mackenzie, third son of Colin Cam Mackenzie of Kintail around 1618. As a result of his marriage (contract 15 August 1611) to the widow of Sir James Stewart of Kilcoy, he had a charter of the lands of Kilcoy dated 18 July 1616 and a further charter of the Barony of Kilcoy dated 29 January 1618. The estates passed through the male line of the Mackenzies of Kilcoy until the death in 1883 of Sir Evan Mackenzie, 2nd Baronet, when they were inherited by his eldest daughter, who married a Colonel Burton.


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Jacobite Portraits - 18th Century Style

Jacobite Portraits

John Murray 4th Earl of Dunmore 1765

John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore

Murray was born in Tymouth, Scotland. He was the eldest son of William Murray, 3rd Earl of Dunmore, and his wife, Catherine (née Murray); he was a nephew ofJohn Murray, 2nd Earl of Dunmore. In 1745 William Murray and son, John (then only 15), joined the ill-fated campaign of "Bonnie Prince Charlie" (Charles Edward Stuart). Young Murray was appointed a page to Prince Charles. The second Earl, his uncle, remained with the Hanoverian regime.

After the Jacobite army was defeated at Culloden (1746), the Murray family was put under house arrest, and the patriarch, William, was imprisoned in the Tower. By 1750, William had received a conditional pardon. John was now 20, and joined the British Army. In 1756, after the deaths of his uncle and father, Murray became the fourth Earl of Dunmore.

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Kenneth Sutherland, 3rd Lord Duffus, d. 1734. Painted by Richard Waitt, 1712

Lord Duffus was a Scottish aristocrat who supported the Act of Union in 1707. However, during the 1715 Jacobite Rising he joined the rebels who wanted to restore the exiled Stuart dynasty. The Rising failed and Duffus’s estates were forfeited. He fled to the continent, but was captured and imprisoned in the Tower of London. Released in 1717, he later served in the Russian Imperial Navy where he rose to the rank of admiral. This portrait was painted before Lord Duffus joined the Jacobite cause. The painting is an early and complete depiction of Highland dress. Lord Duffus is shown dressed for hunting and the image conforms to the traditional Gaelic ideal of the aristocrat as ‘the hunter of deer’.

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Sir Robert Dalrymple of Castleton 

Lowland laird Sir Robert Dalrymple of Castleton painted circa 1720. Interesting work that is one of the early paintings showing a Lowland laird in tartan to show his jacobite support.

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Charles Campbell of Lochlane, died 1751. Advocate National Gallery of Scotland.

The son of a Scottish judge, Charles Campbell of Lochlane became an advocate in 1738. This portrait of Campbell in Highland dress was painted sometime before 1745 by an unknown painter. It is of particular interest because he is wearing a separate kilt and plaid. At the time, most sitters wore the ‘great kilt'; a long length of tartan which acted as both kilt and plaid. This portrait is therefore one of the earliest illustrations of a ‘little kilt', which is the style usually worn today. The tartan’s vibrant red colour was a popular choice for prominent men. Red was an expensive dye and the careful matching of shades of red yarn made it more time-consuming, and therefore more expensive, to weave.

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Dr. Sir Stuart Threipland, of Fingask (1716-1805), physician to Bonnie Prince Charlie during the Jacobite rising of 1745, and President of the Royal Medical Society from 1766-1770 - William Delacour, Artist.

David Threipland (1694–1745), son of the 2nd baronet, was killed at the Battle of Prestonpans. His half-brother Dr. Stuart Threipland (1716–1805), repurchased Fingask in 1783 at a sale of forfeited land, for £12,207. He married firstly at St. Paul's, Edinburgh, in 1753, Jannet, daughter of David Sinclair of Southdun, Caithness, and secondly at St. Paul's Edinburgh, in 1761, Jannet daughter of Richard Murray of Pennyland, heiress of her cousin Grizel Budge (d. 1798) of Dale & Toftingall, Halkirk, Caithness. His sister Miss Euphame ("Aunt Effie") Threipland (1713- ) is said to have run the estate in his absence. Dr Threipland was President of the Royal Medical Society from 1766.

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Portrait of John Campbell Lord Glenorchy later 3rd Earl of Breadalbane, Enoch Seeman

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Flora MacDonald (1722 - 1790) by Alan Ramsay

Flora MacDonald (GaelicFionnghal nic Dhòmhnaill) (1722 – 4 March 1790),Jacobite heroine, was the daughter of Ranald MacDonald of Milton on the island of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland, and his wife Marion, the daughter of Angus MacDonald.

During the Jacobite Risings, in June 1746, at the age of 24, she was living on the island of Benbecula in the Outer Hebrides when Bonnie Prince Charlie took refuge there after the Battle of Culloden. The prince's companion, a Captain O'Neill, sought her assistance to help the prince escape capture. The island was controlled by the Hanoverian government using a local militia, but the MacDonalds were secretly sympathetic with the Jacobite cause.

After some hesitation, Flora promised to help the prince escape the island. At a later period she told the Duke of Cumberland, son of George II and commander-in-chief in Scotland, that she acted from charity and would have helped the duke himself were he in defeat and in distress.

The commander of the local militia was her stepfather, Hugh MacDonald. The commander gave her a pass to the mainland for herself, a manservant, an Irish spinning maid, Betty Burke, and a boat's crew of six men. The prince was disguised as Betty Burke. He had left Benbecula on 27 June.

After a first repulse at Waternish, Skye, the party landed at Kilbride, Skye, within easy access of Monkstadt, the seat of Sir Alexander MacDonald. The prince was hidden in rocks while Flora MacDonald found help for him in the neighbourhood. It was arranged that he be taken to Portree, Skye and from there taken to Glam on the island of Raasay. The talk of the boatmen brought suspicion on Flora MacDonald, and she was arrested and brought to London for aiding the prince's escape. After a short imprisonment in the Tower of London, she was allowed to live outside of it, under the guard of a "messenger" or gaoler. When the Act of Indemnity was passed in 1747 she was released.

On 6 November 1750, at the age of 28, she married Allan MacDonald of Kingsburgh, a captain in the army and the eldest son of Alexander MacDonald VI. The couple lived at Flodigarry on the Isle of Skye where they subsequently parented five sons and two daughters. Upon the death of Allan MacDonald's father in 1772, the family moved into the MacDonald family estate at Kingsburgh.

Her bravery and loyalty had gained her general sympathy, increased by her good manners and gentle character. Dr Johnson, who met her in 1773, the year before she moved to America, described her as "a woman of soft features, gentle manners, kind soul and elegant presence." He also paid the tribute that is engraved on her memorial at Kilmuir:

"...a name that will be mentioned in history, and if courage and fidelity be virtues, mentioned with honour."

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Flora MacDonald (1722 - 1790)

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Prince Charles Edward Stuart (1720- 88) - Bonnie Prince Charlie

Brass Jacobite Style Cantle Bespoke Sporran

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bespoke scottish jacobite style brass sporran-COLLAGE

We have just finished a bespoke sporran for an old client of ours using his own ex military Jacobite style brass sporran cantle. The brief was to recreate an aged look sporran that we had reference for. First job was to source some vintage brass wear to go with the cantle. Once the sporran was completed we then aged the leather back using a variety of techniques to build and aged look with deep patina to the leather.

bespoke scottish jacobite style brass sporran

We are very pleased with the end result as is the clientand we thought we would share a few images.


bespoke jacobite style brass catle sporran made in scotland

If you have any questions about having a bespoke sporran made, please email us with your sporran ideas.


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Vintage Scottish Highland Gentleman Sporran Style

Antique Scottish Sporran Photographs

We love the old Scottish highland wear Victorian CDV photographs as reference sources for antique sporran designs. We have added a few recent finds below. Look at this wonder sporrans.

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Edinburgh photograph circa 1870 – Possible Macpherson clan tartan kilt

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Simple leather day sporran – photo taken on the Isle of  Rothesay

Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran. vintage sporran photo
Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

A simple fur sporran circa 1890

1880’s photograph taken in Elgin, Moray. He appears to be wearing his dancing shoes and a fine goat hair sporran moloch.

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A fine goat hair sporran moloch and dirk. Interesting to see the double breasted jacket with velvet half collar.

Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Edinburgh photograph circa 1870 – Macpherson clan tartan kilt and clan crested fine goat hair sporran moloch.

vintage scottish kilt highland wear photos.  highlander circa 1911. Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Edwardian ex military gentleman with fine horsehair sporran circa 1911

A piper of the 78th Foot (Scotland), 1860. Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Piper of the 78th Regiment of foot circa 1860 with full dress sporran

Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

US photo studio of a gentleman with a fine goats hair dress sporran

Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Oban Argyll photo studio circa 1890 with a classic three tassel white horsehair sporran

Antique & Vintage Sterling Silver Sgian Dubhs

The Gaelic sgian dubh meaning "black knife", where "black" may refer to the usual colour of the handle of the knife. It is also suggested that "black" means secret, or hidden, as in the word blackmail. This is based on the stories and theories surrounding the knife's origin and the meaning of "Dubh" in Gaelic, in particular those associated with the Highland custom of depositing weapons at the entrance to a house prior to entering as a guest. Despite this practice, a small twin edged-dagger, ('Mattucashlass'), concealed under the armpit, combined with a smaller knife, ('Sgian dubh').

Antique Circa 1900 Provincial Jamieson of Aberdeen sgian dubh

Antique circa 1900 Jamieson of Aberdeen ball end engraved skean dubh. With blackwood ribbon carved handle. Toolded leather covered scabbard. Stamped ‘Jamieson of Aberdeen’ on the back.

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Vintage Robert Allison Glasgow 1948 silver skean dubh

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Vintage Robert Allison Glasgow Celtic Ribbon Silver 1948 Hallmarked Sgian Dubh

Wonderful 1948 Robert Allison Glasgow hallmarked celtic ribbon pattern sterling silver. Cairngorm mounted hilt. Hallmarks Glasgow 1948 date letter 'Z'

Length 200mm

Our range of fine hallmarked sterling silver skean dubh's and dirks made by the Regimental silversmith and Royal silversmiths Hamilton & Inches in Edinburgh and our regimental silversmith in Scotland.  We can engrave many of these skean dubhs for presentation gifts.  Many of these skean dubhs complement the silver buckles, kilt pins and Scottish silver buttons we have available from our highland jewelry page.

Antique 1911 Wilson & Sharp Edinburgh Sgian Dubh

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Vintage Robert Allison Glasgow 1941 silver - Roe buck sgian dubh

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Robert Allison Silversmith In hallmarked sterling silver Roe buck antler sgian dubh. Glasgow silver hallmark for 1949. Good vintage condition

Robert Allison registred his mark in November 1941. He manufactured fine Highland wear silver accessories and jewellery from the workshops in Glasgow and Edinburgh. His son later joined the business to form Robert Allison & James Allison - Trading as Robert Allison & Son. 1954 - 1960. Makers mark RA.

Robert Allison Edinburgh Sterling Silver Scottish Sgian Dubh - Hallmarked 1968

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Vintage 1968 Robert Allison sterling silver hallmarked sgian dubh - complete with original R G Lawrie retailers box.

Robert Allison Silversmith In hallmarked sterling silver sgian dubh with blackwood hilt mounted with a stone. Edinburgh silver hallmark for 1968. 

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Sterling Silver MacPherson Clan Sgian Dubh - Bespoke Project

Sterling silver clan engraved sgian dubh

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We have just completed a new sterling silver clan engraved sgian dubh for a client. The blade was engraved with the Macpherson clan motto and the silver mounted scabbard has the new owners initials hand engraved in a classic script style.

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Colonel Ewen Henry Davidson Macpherson

Macpherson Clan – A Brief History

In Scottish Gaelic the name Macpherson is Mac a’ Phersein which means son of the parson. The Celtic church allowed priests to marry and the progenitor of the chiefs of Clan Macpherson is believed to have been a man named Muireach or Murdo Cattenach who was the priest of Kingussie in Badenoch. The Clan Macpherson is part of the Chattan Confederation (Clan Chattan).  In 843 the chief of Clan Chattan was Gille Chattan Mor and one of his sons, the first chief of Clan Macpherson was forced to resettle in Lochaber byKenneth MacAlpin, first king of Scots. The chief could have been the lay prior ofArdchattan and he seems to have been named in honor of Saint Cathan.

Macpherson clan traditions is that in 1309 Robert the Bruce offered the lands of Badenoch to the chief of Clan Macpherson on the condition that they destroyed the Bruce’s enemies, the Clan Comyn, and the Macphersons carried out the king’s wishes. The Clan Macpherson is sometimes known as the Clan of the Three Brothersowing to the fact that chief Ewan Ban Macpherson had three sons: Kenneth Macpherson of Clunie, Iain Macpherson of Pitman and Gillies Macpherson of Invereshie.

14th-century clan conflicts

In 1370 the Battle of Invernahavon took place between the Chattan Confederation and the Clan Cameron. There was a dispute between the Macphersons and another clan of the confederation, the Clan Davidson over who should take the right wing in the battle. The Clan Mackintosh, whose chiefs were also chiefs of the Chattan Confederation favored the Davidsons and as a result the Macphersons left the field of battle. The Clan Cameron took advantage of this situation and gained the upper hand, however the Macphersons were eventually coerced back into the battle and the Camerons were defeated. The feud between the Clan Cameron and Chattan Confederation continued for many years after and in 1396 the Battle of the North Inch took place, which was watched by Robert III of Scotland and his whole court.

17th century and civil war

In 1618 Andrew Macpherson, eighth chief of Clan Macpherson acquired the abbey-castle grange in Strathisla. Andrew’s son, Euan Macpherson supported the royalist cause during the Scottish Civil War and fought forJames Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose. The tenth chief was Duncan Macpherson of Cluny who in 1672 lost his claim to lead the Chattan Confederation. The Privy Council of Scotland instead found in favor of a Mackintosh. Duncan had no sons and in 1722 was therefore succeeded as chief of Clan Macpherson by Lachlan Macpherson, fourth Laird of Nuid

18th century Jacobite uprisings

Chief Euan Macpherson of Cluny was a notable leader in the Jacobite rising of 1745 and fought at the Clifton Moor Skirmish. After the Jacobite defeat at the Battle of Culloden, Cluny was able to escape capture by government troops for nine years even though a reward of £1000 was offered for his capture. He escaped to France in 1755. William Macpherson was killed at the Battle of Falkirk (1746) and he is the ancestor of the current chief of Clan Macpherson. His brother witnessed government “red coats” burning Macpherson of Cluny’s house. Duncan Mapherson of Cluny fought for the British government during the American Revolutionary War.

Castles

  • Cluny Castle, about five miles south-west of Newtonmore in Strathspey was a stronghold of the clan. The original castle dated from the fourteenth century but was razed by the Duke of Cumberland after theJacobite rising of 1745 which the Macphersons had supported.[2] The present Cluny Castle is in fact a nineteenth century mansion that was built on the site of the original stronghold.
  • Ballindalloch Castle was built by the Clan Grant and owned by the Ballindallochs before coming to the Macphersons, now the Macpherson-Grants.
  • Newton Castle, Blairgowrie, Perthshire is the current seat of the Macpherson chiefs.
  • Invereshie House, near Kingussie, Strathspey was held by the Macphersons from the fourteenth century. William Macpherson of Invereshie captured Blair Castle from the Marquess of Montrose in 1644.
  • Pitman House, near Kingussie, Strathspey was held by the Macphersons from the fourteenth century. The present building forms part of the Highland Folk Museum.
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MacPherson vintage CDV photograph circa 1870

RW Forsyth- Classic Highland Wear Outfitter - A Short History

R W Forsyth – Classic Highland Wear Outfitter.

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R W Forsyth

Born in the Lothians, Forsyth came to Glasgow as a nineteen-year old and gained his experience of clothing retailing with several city firms. In 1872 Forsyth set up in business as ladies and gentleman’s hosier, shirtmaker and highland wear retailer in Renfield Street. His success led to an expansion, and he gradually acquired all the properties around the corner of Renfield Street and Gordon Street. The old buildings were demolished and a new department store was built on the site in 1897.

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Forsyth’s department store was designed by J J Burnet and built at a cost of £25,000. Heating and lighting were state of the art, while a wide staircase and new electric lifts permitted the efficient movement of goods and people around the six floors.

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Hair sporran illustrations from 1909

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Fur and leather sporrans from 1909

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Dirks, sgian dubhs, pins and badges 1909 illustrations

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1909 RW Forsyth Highland Wear Illustration

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1909 RW Forsyth Highland Wear Illustration

The success of the new store allowed Forsyth to expand his business further, including a new store on Edinburgh’s Princes Street. The Forsyth Building in Edinburgh was built for RW Forsyth, in 
1906 and was Scotland’s first steel-framed structure, with the spire becoming a landmark in its own right. The spire itself was completed by Gilbert Bayes, known for his work with the Royal Doulton Company and creating the The Queen of Time at Selfridges in London.

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RW Forsyth Glengarry Bonnet Badge

Forsyth continued to take a close interest in the business into his old age, and it remained in the family after his death.

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RW Forsyth 1930’s – 1950’s catalogue Highland wear illustrations

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RW Forsyth Highland Child’s Otter Fur Sporran

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1909 RW Forsyth Highland Wear Illustration

References: Mitchell Library, GC 052 BAI – Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning

The Braemar Gathering Highland Games Royal Deeside

Braemar Gathering – Highland Games

Each year the village of Braemar in Royal Deeside, Scotland invites people from all over the world ‘to come over the hills’ to attend the Braemar Gathering and Highland Games.

The Gathering is always held on the first Saturday in September and it is perhaps the most famous and best Highland Games anywhere. It features the finest Pipe Bands, pipers, Highland dancers, and athletes in a beautiful setting surrounded by hills. The patron of the Gathering is Her Majesty the Queen.

The Braemar Gathering has been regularly attended by members of the Royal Family since Queen Victoria first attended in 1848. Indeed, King Malcolm Canmore held games nearby almost 1000 years ago so there is a long ‘pedigree’.

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George V and Queen Mary at the Braemar Gathering in the 1930’s

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George V and Queen Mary at the Braemar Gathering in the 1930’s

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George V and Queen Mary at the Braemar Gathering in the 1930’s

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September 1951: Queen Elizabeth and King George VI (1895 – 1952) (centre) with Captain Farqhuarson (right), the Marquis of Aberdeen (left) and Princess Margaret (1930 – 2002) at the Braemar Highland Gathering in Aberdeenshire. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

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9th September 1952: Captain Alwyne Farqharson of Invercauld and his wife arriving at the Braemar Highland Gathering in Aberdeenshire. 

Braemar Royal Highland Society

Braemar Royal Highland Society was born quietly and in humble circumstances as the Braemar Wright Society during the third week of July 1815, as a result of late 18th century enabling legislation, designed to encourage the formation of mutual assistance societies.

Entrants had to pay 10/- (50p) initially, plus 1/- (5p) per quarter, in return for which there was provision for an annuity for members on reaching the age of 70; sickness and death benefit, and a widow’s allowance. Many such societies were formed during this period, but few survived for more than a few years.

The Braemar Wright Society was formally constituted in 1816, six months to the day after the battle of Waterloo, and in 1817 was formally registered with the Clerk of the Peace as a Friendly Society – now the oldest surviving Friendly Society in the country.

In 1826 the name of the Society was changed to The Braemar Highland Society. This was at the suggestion of the then Deputy Master (Vice President), Charles Cumming, Earl Fife’s factor on Mar estate.

Fife was at that time President of the Society, and it seems likely that the idea of change originated with him.

At this time, wrights (both wheel wrights and square wrights or joiners) were very active in Braemar, and they had given their name to the annual procession culminating in what is now the Braemar Gathering. It was known as the Vrichts’ or Wrights’ Walk.

In 1832 the Braemar Highland Society decided to give £5 for prizes at the Gathering, and from that time on, the Highland Society organised the Braemar Gathering, which became its major undertaking.

From the time of her first appearance at the Gathering in 1848, Queen Victoria took a close interest both in the Society and the Gathering, and in 1866 ordered that the title “Royal” should be added to the name of the Society.

In 1971, the Lord Lyon King of Arms granted Letters Patent to the Society, which thereby became armigerous, or bearing its own Coat of Arms. The Braemar Royal Highland Society has now no function other than as a Friendly Society.

The Gathering, which predates the disastrous 1745 Uprising, was forbidden by law for over 30 years after Culloden, but by the year 1800 it was again up and running. Since 1848 it has been regularly attended by the reigning Monarch and members of the Royal Family.

The foot races at the Gathering are the world’s oldest, having been organised on a regular basis by the same body since 1832.

Braemar Royal Highland Charity

This company was set up in 2006 to replace the Braemar Gathering Charitable Trust, and has ownership of all of the parent Society’s heritable property.

The objects of the Charity are, briefly, to provide or organise recreational facilities for members of the public and since 2011 to organise and run the Gathering; to foster and promote community development in the local area, and to promote the education of the public about the history, traditions, sport, language, culture and heritage of Scotland.

The Charity, funded entirely by accumulated past profits from the Braemar Gathering, maintains the 12 acre Princess Royal and Duke of Fife Memorial Park as a public amenity, and in co-operation with a parents’ committee it runs the local Highland Dancing Class: with financial assistance from local businesses it organises pipe bands which play in the village in summer: it gives financial support to the independent Braemar Charitable Trust, and finally, it annually distributes money to eligible charities and others.

In order to provide a Highland Interpretive centre with an additional display of trophies, especially those won by Bill Anderson during his uniquely distinguished career as a heavy athlete; to provide up to date office and meeting facilities for the Highland Society as well as a local Registrar’s office, and to provide a venue for the Highland Dancing Class and summer dancing displays, as well as corporate hospitality on Gathering day, the Charity is currently raising funds for a new building to be situated at the entrance to the Park.

In order to help further the objects of the Charity, Gift Aid donations are invited from well-wishers. Further information may be obtained from the Secretary

Secretary - Braemar Royal Highland Charity Society Office  Braemar Aberdeenshire, AB35 5YU

mail: secretary@braemargathering.org

For more information please visit the Society website

Vintage Scottish Highland Gentleman Style

Vintage Scottish Highland Gentleman Kilt Photographs

We have gather together a collection of vintage Highland gentleman photographs from our own collection and photographs that clients have kindly sent us. We hope you will enjoy the photographs and use them as a wonderful reference source. We do not have copies available for sale and they are just to be used for reference. If you have anything you would like us to add to this library please email us.

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HRH The Prince of Wales

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Inverness Photograph CDV – Possible Sutherland Highlanders association looking at the plaid brooch and glengarry badge

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London Photographic studio CDV

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Possible MacPherson with a fabulous goat hair sporran

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The goat hair sporran is very similar to this sporran

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Seaforth Highlanders Pipe Major

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George V and family members - Possibly at Mar Lodge

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Gentlemen in day dress maybe for a day at the games

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Circa 1880 CDV Highland gentleman with a wonderful Scottish wildcat sporran.

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Wonderful goat hair sporran worn with tweeds.

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Interesting to see the small low breast pocket for the watch fob on the doublet

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A clan chief photographed in the studio circa 1870. Wonderful eagle feathers in his bonnet.

Antique Balmoral Highlanders Sgian Dubhs by William Robb of Ballater

Antique Balmoral Highlanders sgian dubh’s hand crafted by William Robb of Ballater.

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A true set of classic Balmoral Highlanders sgian dubh’s hand crafted by William Robb of Ballater. The first was assayed 1898 whilst the other two are for 1902.

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William Robb of Ballater – Scottish provincial Balmoral Highlanders sgian dubh by William Robb, marked ROBB / BALLATER (in triangular punch). Edinburgh 1903 – 1904 to top and chape of scabbard, the carved black wood handle with Celtic knot and basket weave decoration, applied with ten simple studs, the terminal with socket mounted pin top with engraved Celtic knot details, the bottom mount with incised zig zag border, the leather covered wooden scabbard with Celtic knot work and three bosses, chape mount similarly decorated, inscribed to reverse `ERI 1903` overall length 21cm long, blade 10.5cm

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Notes: the double fullered blade is marked to one side with the running ostrich mark, signifying it having been bought from the master cutlers in Solingen Germany.

Antique Balmoral Highlanders buttons and full uniform with the buttons.

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balmoral highlanders uniform

19th Century Ladies Silver Sgian Dubh

A rather unusual stunning 19th Century Ladies Silver Sgian Dubh with a belt loop to hang from a ladies waist. With beautiful ribbon carved and studded hilt and silver mounts. possibly also made by William Robb but unmarked.

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19th Century Ladies Silver Sgian Dubh

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A lady in tartan dress wearing a sgian dubh on a belt circa 1880

Antique – Vintage Sgian Dubh’s & Highland Dirks

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We have a passion for fine antique and collectible sgian dubh’s and Highland dirks. We source antique Jacobite styles of the 18th century, high Victorian styles and regimental patterns of WW1 – WW2. Our sgian dubh and dirk range make wonderful addition to any Highland dress collection. In addition to the antique range we also make wonderul new silver sgian dubh for clients, these will become truely desirable antiques of the future.

Please specify the collection to use for the album.

Vintage 1950 Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Silver Sgian Dubh

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Vintage Zoomorphic Sterling Silver Sgian Dubh

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Vintage sterling silver zoomorphic sgian dubh with ribbon handle and stone set hilt. Hallmarked 1950 Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Edinburgh. Leather covered and silver mounted scabbard. In good used vintage condition.

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Hallmarked 1950 Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Edinburgh

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Vintage Celtic Sterling Silver Sgian Dubh

Vintage sterling silver celtic sgian dubh with ribbon handle and stone set hilt. Hallmarked Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Edinburgh Leather covered and silver mounted scabbard. In good used vintage condition.

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Antique – Vintage Sgian Dubh’s & Highland Dirks

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We have a passion for fine antique and collectible sgian dubh’s and Highland dirks. We source antique Jacobite styles of the 18th century, high Victorian styles and regimental patterns of WW1 – WW2. Our sgian dubh and dirk range make wonderful addition to any Highland dress collection. In addition to the antique range we also make wonderul new silver sgian dubh for clients, these will become truely desirable antiques of the future.

Please specify the collection to use for the album.

Classic Scottish & Irish Regimental Feather Hackles

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Scottish & Irish Regimental Feather Hackles

Over the years we have supplied feather hackles and plumes to pipers, pipe bands, TV and film. All hand crafted in the UK to Ministry of Defence standards.

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Classic Black cock style glengarry hackle as worn by the regiments and civilian pipers around the world.

aberfeldy. Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Aberfeldy pipers circa 1880 with his distinctive Black Cock style glengarry hackle.

aberfeldy pipe band. Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Aberfeldy Pipeband with Black Cock style feather hackles

dalkeith. Antique and vintage scottish sporran style blog. Featuring fine Scottish sporrans for sale. Scottish Highland wear mail order direct from Scotland at The House of labhran

Circa 1880 civilian gentleman with Black Cock style feather hackle in his glengarry

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Irish Guards - London Irish caubeen hackle


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Red feather glengarry hackle

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Royal Dublin Fusiliers caubeen hackle

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Royal Munster Fusiliers caubeen hackle

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5th Battalion Royal Regt of Scotland flat green hackle

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RSDG white bonnet hackle and glengarry feather hackles

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White RSDG - RHF hackle


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Royal Regiment of Scotland band feather bonnet hackle

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Scots Guards pipers feather bonnet hackle

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Edinburgh Tattoo Pipe & Drum Major’s with a selection of hackles.

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Black Watch red pipers feather bonnet hackle

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Royal Corps of Transport pipers feather bonnet hackle

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Liverpool Irish A Troop Caubeen hackle

Please specify the collection to use for the album.

Classic Seaforth Highlanders Period Style Red Kilt Garter Flashes

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(c) The Highlanders' Museum; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
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Seaforth Highlanders Officers & Sgts Garter Flashes

Classic red wool worsted garter as worn by Officers and Sgts. With two tails and two pleats, supplied with an elastic adjustable kilt garter. This pattern is also available in two other colour ways. One pleat version as worn by Privates and Corporals available on request.

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Hand crafted by The House of Labhran in Scotland

Made to order. Approx 10 days

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Seaforth Highlanders officer pipers and other ranks

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Seaforth Highlander

Scottish Garter Ties & Kilt Flashes

We hand craft wonderful period pattern kilt garter ties and kilt flashes for private Highland wear clients, film and television productions. Based on historical patterns we have developed classic Victorian style garter ties worn on modern elastic garters. In addition we offer full self tie kilt hose garters for those clients looking for that period vintage style. We currently offer a wide range classic patterns including Argyle garters, Atholl Highlanders, Gordon Highlanders and Seaforth Highlanders patterns.

Gordon Highlanders Kilt Garter Flashes

We have now added the classic Gordon Highlanders regimental bellied flash into the range. Hand made in a classic red wool worsted tape and mounted on an adjustable elasticated kilt garter.  

gordon highlanders bellowed kilt flashes.

Gordon Highlanders Bellied Kilt Garter Flashes


Scottish 19th Century & Early 20th Century Highland Dress Style Photographs

We have found some wonderful vintage antique Highland wear photos from teh 19th and early 20th century. These images make a great resource for period Highland dress styles as worn by gentlemen at the time. We hope you injoy this latest collection.  

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Fabulous sporrans at a gathering in the US

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Wonderful sporrans at the Highland games including a Scottish Wildcat sporran on the left. Sir Fitzroy with Maclean of Ardgour on the right ( aged 77, but lived for another 24 years ) durring the Gathering at Duart on the 24th of August in 1912.

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The Duke of Atholl in full dress

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Balmoral Ghillies 1866 including John Brown and his brother Archie

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Wedding group at the Tarbet Hotel 1910

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Wedding group at the Tarbet Hotel 1910

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An early photo of a couple circa 1860. Gaelic Knot kilt bows on the gentleman’s kilt

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March past of the clans at the Braemar Gathering 

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Possibly a photo of the young Atholl in an early pattern Kilmarnock bonnet.

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Gathering at the games.Fine sporrans and very fine plus four style.

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Gentleman with a wonderfully stylish otter full mask sporran

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Perthshire 1880’s shooting party and wonderful badger full mask sporran.


Scottish Wildcat Sporrans & Clan Associations

The Scottish wildcat, cat fiadhaich in Gaelic, is no household moggy and has always been regarded with a certain respect by humans on account of its legendary ferocity when cornered. 

Over the years we have sourced a number of antique and vintage Scottish wildcat sporrans. Since the early 1990's the Scottish Wildcat is rightly protected and so these antique and vintage sporrans are becoming very rare.

Reputed to be untameable, the 'Scottish tiger', as it is sometimes known, has an honoured place in Highland culture. Early on in Scottish history, Caithness and Sutherland formed the Pictish province, Cataibh, meaning land of the Cat Tribe or Catti. Caithness still retains an obvious echo of that name. The Duke of Sutherland's Gaelic title is Morair Chat, meaning 'The Great Man of the Cats'. There is a cat in the clan crest, and their motto is 'Sans Peur' ('Without fear'). Other clans have similar themes, reflecting a respect for this animal's fierce spirit. The Clan Mackintosh crest also features a feisty-looking cat, with the motto 'Touch not the cat bot (bot meaning 'without') a glove', and for the Clan MacGillivray the motto is 'Touch not this cat'. The wildcat was a totem of a number of other early Celtic tribes, including the Irish 'cat-heads' - possibly warriors who wore cat skin over their battle helmets.

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Rare Vintage Scottish 1950’s Wild Cat Full Mask Sporran


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Vintage Scottish 1960’s Scottish Wild Cat fur with thistle cantle dress sporran


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A bespoke vintage 1960’s Scottish Wild Cat fur pelt with a vintage jacobite style cantle made up by our Scottish sporran maker in a classic style based on an Edwardian pattern, with pouch.

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The Clan Chattan sporran and the confederation of Clans including the principal Clans including.

Mackintosh

MacGillivray

MacBean

Shaw

MacThomas

Macleans of Dochgarroch

Macpherson

Farquharson

Davidson

MacPhail

MacIntyres in Badenoch

MacQueens of Strathdearn


Please specify the collection to use for the album.

The Scottish Wildcat In Scottish mythology

In Celtic mythology, the wildcat was associated with rites of divination and Other wordly encounters. Domestic cats are not prominent in Insular Celtic tradition (as house cats were not introduced to the British Isles until the Mediaeval period).Fables of the Cat Sìth, a fairy creature described as resembling a large white-chested black cat, are thought to have been inspired by the Kellas cat, itself thought to be a free ranging wildcat-houscat crossbreed.Doctor William Salmon, writing in 1693, mentioned how portions of the wildcat were used for medicinal purposes; its flesh was used to treat gout, its fat used for dissolving tumours and easing pain, its blood used for curing "falling sickness", and its excrement used for treating baldness.

Scottish Wildcat sporrans Thorburn1902

In Scottish heraldry

The wildcat is considered an icon of the Scottish wilderness, and has been used in clan heraldry since the 13th century. The Picts venerated wildcats, having probably named Caithness (Land of the Cats) after them. According to the foundation myth of the Catti tribe, their ancestors were attacked by wildcats upon landing in Scotland. Their ferocity impressed the Catti so much, that the wildcat became their symbol. A thousand years later, the progenitors of Clan Sutherland, equally impressed, adopted the wildcat on their family crest.The Chief of Clan Sutherland bears the title Morair Chat (Great Man of the Cats). The Clan Chattan Association (also known as the Clan of Cats) is made up of 12 different clans, the majority of which display the wildcat on their badges.

Sir William Alan Macpherson of Cluny and Blairgowrie, TD, Baron of Blair, 27th Chief of the Clan Macpherson (center) with wonderful vintage wildcat sporran.

 Sir William Alan Macpherson of Cluny and Blairgowrie, TD, Baron of Blair, 27th Chief of the Clan Macpherson (center) with wonderful vintage wildcat sporran.

Vintage 1927 Highlanders & 1947 Silver Sgian Dubh


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Highlanders Sterling Silver Skean Dubh

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Highlanders Sterling Silver Skean Dubh – 1927 Edinburgh Hallmarked

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Vintage sterling silver SD pattern sgian dubh with studded handle. Classic pattern as used by the Highland regiment officers. Hallmarked Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Edinburgh 1927 Leather covered silver mounted scabbard. In good used vintage condition. 170mm x 26mm

Our range of new fine hallmarked sterling silver skean dubh’s and dirks made by the Regimental silversmith and Royal silversmiths Hamilton & Inches in Edinburgh and our regimental silversmith in Scotland.  We can engrave many of these skean dubhs for presentation gifts.  Many of these skean dubhs complement the silver buckles, kilt pins and Scottish silver buttons we have available from our highland jewelry page.

Vintage 1947 Sterling Silver Sgian Dubh

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Vintage sterling silver sgian dubh with ribbon handle. Hallmarked Thomas Kerr Ebbutt Edinburgh 1947 Leather covered and silver mounted scabbard. In good used vintage condition.

Vintage 1947 Thomas Kerr Ebbutts Edinburgh Sterling Silver Sgian Dubh

Antique – Vintage Sgian Dubh’s & Highland Dirks

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We have a passion for fine antique and collectible sgian dubh’s and Highland dirks. We source antique Jacobite styles of the 18th century, high Victorian styles and regimental patterns of WW1 – WW2. Our sgian dubh and dirk range make wonderful addition to any Highland dress collection. In addition to the antique range we also make wonderul new silver sgian dubh for clients, these will become truely desirable antiques of the future.

Please specify the collection to use for the album.

New South Wales Pipe Major’s Bagpipe Banner

The New South Wales Australia Police Pipe Band have a world reputation and we were very happy to produce a new bagpipe banner for the pipe band.

NSW police pipe band bagpipe banner

New Sourth Wales Police pipe banner design and made by the House of Labhran

Australian new south wales police pipe banners made by the house of labhran

New Sourth Wales state crest on the reverse of the NSW Police Pipes & Drums pipe banner design and made by the House of Labhran.

If you have a project in mind our in house team can help create a a bespoke Drum Major’s baldric, bagpipe banner or flag carrier sash that will be carried on your band for years to come.

Please specify the collection to use for the album.

Period Highland Kilt Dress – Reference of Scottish period kilt style

We often work on period style kilt jackets and use old photos from the golden age of Highland wear. We use elements like pocket styles and kilt jacket cut in our made to order Highland jackets today. Looking to the past for inspiration, but not living it in.

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King Edward VII at Balmoral with a very fin Scottish Wildcat sporran and matching tweed kilt, jacket and cap. Very typical of the king’s hunting attire on the grouse.

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Clan chief with 5 minature medals worn on the jacket.

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This gentleman has a gaelic knots on his kilt. Also a rather unusual top jacket pocket with buttoned faux flap. CDV photograph taken in Inverness.

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Possible Scottish Wildcat fur sporran. Circa 1870

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Excellent kilt pleated garter flashes with the diced kilt hose and chief’s eagle feathers in his Balmoral bonnet.

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The young Princes George Duke of Kent 1910 taken at Balmoral

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Lt Colonel William Campbell in full dress with a set of Gaelic knot kilt ribbons, fine brogue buckles and very large fine plaid brooch on his fly plaid.

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Rather fine edged double brested waistcoat.

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Unusuallly the Highland dirk is worn on the left in the photo. Maybe just for the photo but we have seen Victorian gentlemen wearing the dirk and sgian dubh on the left. Including the Prince of Wales later Edward VIII.

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Cameron Highlanders officer in mess dress jacket and waistcoat

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Cameron clan chief 1903 with wonder Scottish Wildcat sporran

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Interesting plain tweed kilt CDV taken in Aberdeen.  

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CDV of a gentleman taken in Inverness

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Interesting to see the Pipe Major’s four stripes worn the other way up further up the sleeve.


Black Watch Royal Highlanders silver sgian dubh - Ultimate in kilt style.

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Hand crafted Black Watch Royal Highlanders officers sgian dubh

In hallmarked sterling silver and over plated with gold. Hand crafted by the royal silversmith Hamilton & Inches, Edinburgh. As worn by the officers of the Black Watch Royal Highlanders. Hand made to order


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Black Watch sterling silver sgian dubh with gold plating over hallmarked silver.

scottish sterling silver hamilton and inches black watch regimental sgian dubh

 

Cairngorm stone set hilt

st andrew scottish sterling silver hamilton and inches black watch regimental sgian dubh

Our range of fine hallmarked sterling silver skean dubh's and dirks made by the Royal silversmiths Hamilton & Inches in Edinburgh and our regimental silversmith in Scotland.  We can engrave many of these skean dubhs for presentation gifts.  Many of these skean dubhs complement the silver buckles, kilt pins and Scottish silver buttons we have available from our highland jewelry page. 

hallmark scottish sterling silver hamilton and inches black watch regimental sgian dubh

The Regiment was first raised in the wake of the a Jacobite rebellion (1715), when James Stuart the son of the deposed James II raised the Scottish Clans in rebellion against King William III and attempted to retake the crown his father had lost in 1688.  The British government lacked the resources to keep a standing army in the Scottish Highlands to oversee the clans and ensure their loyalty.  Therefore six Companies were recruited in 1725 from the loyal and trustworthy highland clans of; Campbell, Grant, Fraser and Munro, to prevent inter-clan fighting, raiding and enforce the law.  

The Regiment was initially known as the Regiment of the Line in 1739 but became the 43rd Highland Regiment of Foot in 1740 and renumbered the 42nd in 1742.  It was commonly called ‘The Black Watch’ possibly due to the dark regimental tartan worn.

Currently The Black Watch 3rd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland (3 SCOTS) is based at Fort George, Inverness, Scotland.


Please specify the collection to use for the album.

The Rifle Green Regulation Doublet - Kilt Style

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Pipe Major Gordon Walker in the Rifle Green Regulation Doublet. Photos by © KSG Photography

When it comes to the classic regulation doublet the black barathea has always been a popular option witha  wide range of colour linings and grosgrain silk lapels. We are now offering a wonderful dark rifle green barathea cloth. Again paired with black silk lapels and black braid, but that rich dark rifle green barathea gives that extra style with your kilt. 

Fine Scottish kilt jackets and doublets. Made to order in Scotland for our clients around the world. If you require more details we would love to hear from you, drop us an email.

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Pipe Major Gordon Walker in the Rifle Green Regulation Doublet. Photos by © KSG Photography

Pipe Major Gordon Walker

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Gordon started playing bagpipes at the age of four and a half under Pipe Major David Kay.

He won the Gold Medal at Oban in 1993, and at Inverness the following year, and the Open Piobaireachd at Oban in 1995 and 2007. But it was his prowess as a light music player that attracted the most attention. He won the Former Winners March, Strathspey and Reel at Oban in 1994, 1995, 1996, 2003, 2004 and 2005, and at Inverness in 1990, 1993, 2000, 2001. He won the Glenfiddich Championship in 2007.

Gordon and the House of labhran have been friends since the 1990’s and we have shared some great piping times over the years. One of the worlds finest pipers and always one of the most stylishly dressed. 

With special thanks to KSG Photography

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A big thank you to for the wonderful photos from our friends at Ayrshire Wedding and Portriat Photography. Internationally published Scottish photographer Kevin Wyllie prides himself on his ability to deliver high-quality photography utilising a blend of traditional training and the latest digital technology. This has resulted in members of the Royal family, world-class athletes and music stars making an appearance in front of his lens.

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 Photos by © KSG Photography

House of Labhran 

House of Labhran fine Scottish Highland wear for gentlemen, dandies and rogues. See the Highland jacket and or tweed department for more details about ordering your own jacket and waistcoat. We would love to hear from you. 

Glenlyon Scottish tweed Argyle jacket and waistcoat - Classic Labhran style

We have just finished this wonderful Highland tweed Argyle jacket and waistcoat for one of clients in the US. hand crafted in a 21oz Highland tweed and lined in a soft light blue satin lining. Styled with stag horn buttons this classic style was a joy to create for one of our friends across the pond. It will be interesting to see the first photos of how he styles it when it arrives in the US. We have styled it with a classic vintage  Turnbull & Asser shirt and wine worsted wool hare tie. 

glenlyon tweed argyle kilt jacket and waistcoat made to order


House of Labhran tweed Argyle jacket and waistcoat mixed vintage Turnbull & Asser shirt and tie from our own collection.

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Four pocket waistcoat with stag horn style buttons

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Glenlyon 21oz tweed

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Light blue satin lining to compliment the tweed tones

House of Labhran fine Scottish Highland wear for gentlemen, dandies and rogues. See the Highland jacket and or tweed department for more details about ordering your own jacket and waistcoat. We would love to hear from you. 

Scottish Tweed Argyle Jacket & Waistcoat - Edward VIII Style

Scottish Tweed Argyle Jacket & Waistcoat - We have just finished a new project for an old client a fine Scottish tweed Argyle Jacket and waistcoat in a style as worn by Edward VIII. The keepers tweed was style with gold satin lining and braided leather buttons.

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Scottish Ettrick Estate Tweed Argyle 2 Button Kilt Jacket

Made to order In 100% pure wool in Ettrick 21oz keepers tweed cloth. We specialise in creating a range of bespoke shooting garments and Highland jackets to suit any occasion. Our tailor works to bring personal details to suit your requirements. Made to order by our own tailors in Scotland.

The Argyle jacket and waistcoat was styled so the tweed tones matched the chestnut leather braided buttons with four on each plain cuff, two front fastenings and a five button waistcoat. In the style of Edward VIII we went for plain cuffs and no pocket flaps just the clean stylish plain jetted pockets.

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Edward VIII (Edward Albert Christian George Andrew Patrick David; 23 June 1894 – 28 May 1972) was King of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Empire, and Emperor of India, from 20 January 1936 until his abdication on 11 December the same year. On 12 December 1936, at the accession meeting of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom, George VI announced he was to make his brother "His Royal Highness The Duke of Windsor"

On 28 May 1972, the Duke died at his home in Paris, less than a month before his 78th birthday. His body was returned to Britain, lying in state at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle. The funeral service was held in the chapel on 5 June in the presence of the Queen, the Royal Family, and the Duchess of Windsor, who stayed at Buckingham Palace during her visit. He was buried in the Royal Burial Ground behind the Royal Mausoleum of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert at Frogmore.

Vintage highland wear and scottish tweed Argyle jackets made to order in Scotland.

Scottish Tweed Argyle Jacket & Waistcoat - Edward VIII Style

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Bespoke Highland Kilt Jackets & Waistcoats

The House of Labhran offer an extensive range of kilt jackets and waistcoats. All our kilts jackets are 100% made in Scotland and we pride ourselves in our fine Highland kilt jackets in classic Scottish tweed. From the classic Prince Charlie coatee and vest, Balmoral, Sheriffmuir, Kenmore, Regulation doublet to the Argyle day wear jacket in fine Highland tweeds.

The House of Labhran source classic Harris tweeds and keepers tweeds supplying some of Scotland’s top Highland estates. We have a classic range of heavy weight keepers tweeds that can be made into some timeless classic Argyle kilt jackets and waistcoats, perfect for that day on the hill or Highland Games. We will confirm sizes and any non standard size elements with you on order. If you have any questions about sizes please email us. If you have any questions about sizes, tweeds or styling details plesae contact us by email. We are here to help.

Vintage highland wear and scottish tweed Argyle jackets made to order in Scotland. 2638451


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