The very first kilt I ever made was a Dress Ferguson kilt for my daughter - the tartan came from D.C. Dalgiesh. Beautiful tartan, gorgeous colors, and enough heavier than other "dancer's tartans" to swing beautifully without being flippy. I have made literally hundreds of kilts since then, and there is no other tartan that compares to Dalgliesh tartan. The selvedge is beautiful; the hand is perfect - substantial without being stiff. And, remarkably, they will weave a single kilt length at a very reasonable price. I've always been amazed by this - and I have taken advantage of this so many times!
I have countless happy customers who would not have kilts in the tartans they wanted without this unique service. My family alone has had four kilts in Dalgliesh custom weaves and another five kilts in Dalgliesh stock tartans. In fact, the only kilts in our family that aren't made from Dalgliesh tartan are two band kilts where I had no choice about the tartan vendor. Last year, I was honored to make the 100th kilt of a gentleman in the UK. Where did the tartan come from for this special kilt? D.C. Dalgiesh, of course!
Author and Tartan Historian
I've worked with D. C. Dalgliesh for over 30 years during which time we have recreated examples of many original tartans from the 18th and early 19th centuries in shades matched to the originals. No other manufacturer has the interest or ability to weave such small custom runs and the finished product is second to none. I rarely work with anyone else and wholeheartedly support and recommend Dalgliesh as the supply of first choice.
Director, Scottish Tartans Museum
As a kiltmaker, I use tartan from many of Scotland's woolen mills. After working with cloth from all of these mills for many years, I've come to appreciate the distinctive qualities of each. One thing that makes Dalgliesh's cloth so attractive is that it is woven on older looms that naturally give a proper selvage for kilt making. Many of my clients prize their kilts for this reason.
But the real value of the Dalgliesh woolen mill lies in their ability to produce tartan in short-runs of single width material - as little as four yards of cloth in a single tartan. This allows me to order just as much cloth as I need for a kilt, even a lower-yardage one. Other mills I work with require a larger order to weave a custom tartan. Even if the requirement is only 10 meters of 54" wide cloth, that still means having to order more than twice the material you need for a kilt. That puts a kilt in a non-stocked tartan out of the economic range of many people.
Therefore I rely on Dalgliesh for my clients who need a tartan not stocked by larger mills. My ability to provide clients with kilts in the tartan of their choosing would suffer greatly if it were not for this one mill's ability to do short runs of custom tartans.