Scottish tartans

A DigitalNZ Story by Zokoroa

The popularity of tartan patterns as seen in Scottish kilts, fashion clothing, household items and advertising over the years.

Tartan, Tartans, Plaid, Kilts, Scottish, Scots, Scotland, Fashion, Designs, Dancing, Highlands

Tartan patterns with criss-crossed and vertical bands in a variety of colours have been long associated with Scotland and can be traced across Europe and Scandinavia. Tartan is often called plaid in the United States. You can search by surname to find the Scottish clan and tartan at the Scottish Shop and registered tartans (old and recent) at the Scottish Register of Tartans. Over the years, tartan patterns can also be seen emerging in clothing fashion and household items.  

Image: teacosy
teacosy

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

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automaton

Canterbury Museum

Scottish kilts and accessories

Scottish kilts have become the national dress of Scotland  In addition to clan tartans, many tartan patterns have been developed for individuals, families, districts, institutions, and corporations.   

Image: Herbert Boucher Dobbie
Herbert Boucher Dobbie

Auckland Libraries

Image: Highland dancers
Highland dancers

Christchurch City Libraries

Image: Kilt
Kilt

Puke Ariki

Image: Highland Pipe Band
Highland Pipe Band

Kete Rotorua

Image: Highland Pipe Band
Highland Pipe Band

Kete Horowhenua

Image: Badge
Badge

Puke Ariki

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medal, prize

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

Clothing Styles

 Over the years tartan patterns can be seen emerging in children's and men's clothing and women's fashion. 

Children:

Men:

Image: Jacket
Jacket

Puke Ariki

Image: Men’s suit in plaid cotton
Men’s suit in plaid cotton

New Zealand Fashion Museum

Women:

Image: Cerise evening gown with tartan skirt
Cerise evening gown with tartan skirt

New Zealand Fashion Museum

Image: Plaid silk dress
Plaid silk dress

New Zealand Fashion Museum

Image: Tartan jacket & yellow waistcoat
Tartan jacket & yellow waistcoat

New Zealand Fashion Museum

household items

 Tartan has also been incorporated in an assortment of household items.  

Image: King home study
King home study

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

Image: dip pen
dip pen

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

Image: saucer
saucer

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

Image: teacup
teacup

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira

Image: Highlander sweetened condensed milk
Highlander sweetened condensed milk

Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Image: Biscuit Container.
Biscuit Container.

Howick Historical Village

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umbrella

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira