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Kilt College

Passing down traditional bespoke tailoring knowledge and skills

The Traditional Tailored Kilt


Who will coach you?

My learning is based on the intricate and highly skilled craft of the Highland Regiment Master Tailors  and am committed to the lifelong learning of bespoke tailoring.

I aim to make the learning to be more accessible and also to enrich the experience of kilt making by this special location, companionship, ambience, and ongoing support for the local to the international student.

Course also listed on

Craft Courses

Craft Scotland

Learning to make the kilt could be a career choice or simply, a creative ambition.

What greater satisfaction could you have than watching a friend or family member looking resplendent in a kilt that you have handmade for them? How inspiring would it be to handcraft your own kilt to wear yourself?

Here at the Askival of Strathearn Studio, I run courses using the traditional tailoring processes and techniques as applied to kilt making. You will learn tailoring fundamentals and understand the construction of the kilt which will enable you to develop your knowledge and skills in kilt making, restoration, and alteration.

The enthusiasm and excitement for every stage of the kilt creation process are highly infectious and makes each workshop memorable and a pleasure for everyone.

The studio is fully equipped with all equipment and materials required for the craft of the tailored kilt and the training of the craft.


Visitors and groups up to 25 people are welcome by arrangement to visit the studio and discover the art of kilt making. I talk about the history of the kilt and the Highland attire, the tartans, and the construction of the kilt. There will be kilts in construction and finished to view.

Classes are open to all ages and abilities. Dates by arrangements. I aim to work with students to accommodate work life balance and location

“There is something special when creative people get together.” – Joy Mangano

2 day introductory course – To begin with – I would love to know more about kilt making! Is this you?

You need a lot more than 2 days to make a kilt so during these 2 days you will learn about the kilt, the tartan and its process and the techniques.

Using the kilt as a theme and demonstrating some of the main stitches and techniques used in the construction of the traditional kilt, you will produce a wonderful piece of work to take away and proud of as a reminder and talking point.

The days runs from 10 a.m. to 4.30 p.m., with a short break for lunch.
Cost: £125 for both days which includes tuition, the essential tartan, materials and use of equipment.

10 to 12 day introductory course

A 10 to 12 day course (including homework) for £800 per head for fll one to one tuition, course folder and worksheets and the use of equipment. This can be done in a block or spread over mutually agreed days.

Additional cost to purchase for an adult kilt – 8 to 10 yards of tartan approximately £200 to £300 depending on amount and the choice of tartan plus canvasses; lining; leather straps, chapes & sporran loops; buckles; use of materials and equipment etc. £30. You can purchase any kilt making equipment that you want to keep.

In this time, you will aim to make the hand tailored traditional kilt that will be an heirloom. The 10 to 12 days can be arranged to suit circumstances and availability.

To provide the necessary continuous learning support, we also have masterclasses and an established learning set where kilt makers meet together, Skype, network, share best practice and inspire each other.

Masterclasses: £80 per day (10 am to 4.30pm). £25 per evening (7 to 9pm) £40 per afternoon (1pm to 4.30pm)

Learning set: £30 per day, £15 per evening (7 to 9pm)

Remote training/mentoring session by phone or Skype

£20 per 1/2 hour

All aspects of the kilt making process are covered – from taking measurements, planning and calculating the pleating, marking out, to the final press and finishing. There has to be personal coaching and therefore a workshop is limited to six people. To find out more about our kilt making workshops, master classes, or learning set call Marion on 07855 757790 or e-mail Marion at

Car parking and wheelchair access available.

Accommodation can be arranged for those from afar.

The Traditional Fringing for the Tartan Plaid, Stole, and Sash

The traditional fringing is a beautiful finish to the tartan garment and is becoming less common as the number of skilled people is diminishing and suppliers are more frequently offering a plain frayed finish. Would you like to learn how to create the fringing and keep the craft alive?

Go to “Other Askival Heirlooms” to see more details what you can make.
The workshops consists of learning two types of traditional fringing – the five knotted fringe and the purled fringe and the pipers plaid will include pleating. The number of days depend on the size of the project and your pace.
You can make a fly plaid, shawl or sash out of 100% wool tartan, 5 oz 100% tartan silk or other cloth you would prefer. You could even make a start on making the larger Plaid or Pipers Plaid.

The days runs from 10 a.m. to 4.30 p.m., with a short break for lunch.
Cost: £60 for per day which includes use of equipment. Equipment can be purchased.

Cost of cloth varies depending on type and size.


Working under Marion’s tutelage was a hugely rewarding and enriching experience.

She is a patient and insightful teacher, generous in sharing her knowledge and skills in the art of kilt making. Marion’s love of the craft infuses her work, and I found her to be an inspiring and entertaining teacher and work companion.

I came away from Marion’s masterclass with a much deeper understanding of our craft, in both technique and history, confident that I’d been taught by a master.

Lesley Thornton


Thank you very much for the wonderful course at your Kilt College. It has been a real delight. Your tuition has been EXCELLENT – so detailed and thorough. Every part of the kilt making process explained so well – what to do, how to do it, and why it has to be done. At the end, I have a beautiful hand stitched kilt – my first but not my last – which I am very proud of.

The atmosphere at Askival is very comfortable and friendly, cosy and relaxed, inspiring and rewarding and your support throughout has given me the confidence to carry on the art of kilt making into the future. Thank you again so very much.


I spent a wonderful two weeks this October making a kilt at Askival for my sons 21st. Marion is welcoming and keen to share her expert knowledge of kilt making and make it accessible to novices like me. A beautiful location and work space – so peaceful and calm. Better for the soul than going on a retreat – and you get a beautiful kilt at the end!

Janet Dutch

Having just completed my first kilt at Askival Kilt College last week, I cannot recommend this course highly enough. The tuition was first class, the atmosphere was so friendly and the results very rewarding. My son is so proud of his heirloom kilt. And, yes, I have started another one. I will obviously still need support from Marion but time spent at this wonderful college is time well spent and very enjoyable.

May Wilkie

It was a magic two weeks with you and I will be back before too long.


On my summer trip to Scotland I became very interested in the kilt as a garment and especially intrigued as a tailor how to make and achieve that well-fitting pleating at the back of the kilt.
As I am always looking for opportunities to learn new tailoring skills and methods, I was very glad that I found a course that could deliver to a high professional standard.

For me it was important to learn the traditional way of the kilt making and the theory behind the methods used and in the end to have a well-tailored bespoke kilt as a result.

I value greatly to be taught well and from the start it was clear I was in safe hands.
Teaching was consistent, clear and patient all way through the course and the whole atmosphere was very professional and enthusiastic and same time peaceful. Respect for the art of kilt making was ever present.

Whenever I had or took some free time from sewing, I went through books in a little library there and found great books on history of kilts and tartans and source books for methods on sewing, knitting, pattern cutting and sticking.

I highly appreciated the visit we made to the local weaver and it was I opening to see few customer fittings and pickups during my time there.

I only wish I would have had more time to converse on tailoring with  the local master tailor visiting Askival.

All in all I got more than I came for.

If only I lived in Scotland and had a more of change to continue working on kilt making

Liisa Mäenpää
Tailor at the Finnish National Opera and Ballet (2018)

Liisa Mäenpää Tailor at the Finnish National Opera and Ballet