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Tartan Roulette

Lots of fascinating projects wing their way through to me by phone or email and one current one concerns the Russian Scottish tartan. In the wake of the great success of the Chinese Scottish tartan (designed and produced by Strathmore Woollen Company of Forfar) I set about designing a Russian Scottish equivalent and after many, many  months toing and froing with the Russian Consul General in Edinburgh (who became a good friend) and getting permission from the Russian Ambassador in London, the tartan was woven by Strathmore.

The one problem with it was that whilst as designer, I chose the colours, we let the Russians choose the exact shades and the result was a bright tartan that would light up the darkest Russian winter.

Tonight I'm invited to talk to a group of senior Russian businessmen and women who're over in Scotland for a business break and the organisers have gifted each of them some products made in the Russian Scottish tartan - ties, scarves and shawls. I'm interested to see how they're received.

See you JimmyIncluded in my brief presentation to them will be a piece of MacBean tartan gifted to us by Commander Alan Bean (lunar module pilot, Apollo 12, 1969) that he took down onto the surface of the moon and then brought back to earth. That's usually a great hit with audiences.

At the other end of the scale I'm also taking some 'See you Jimmy' hats (those jokey tartan tammies with bright red hair sprouting out of them) to show them that we Scots can have a  good laugh at ourselves. If you want to spread the word that we're not all old sober-sides, you can buy these in our shop (we keep them hidden under the counter!)

By the way - we've added a new page to the weaving section which we think you'll enjoy - a fascinating taste of history about the old hand-loom weaving industry in Bannockburn.

Written by Brian Wilton at 20:00

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