First The New Babbage Dress Tartan ..
( shown here with House of RFYRE FERVOR,WOMEN, BRONZE Dress )
The time and thought and kindness in heart ..in every detail
I can not say enough about the design the fit and the feel of Miss Regan's Hats ..
every part every detail done with care and passion by this wonderful designer!!
( shown here with House of RFYRE FERVOR,WOMEN,ANTIQUE GOLD Dress )
However, many aspects of tartan and Highland dress are controversial and the subject is surrounded by a number of myths. For example, the word 'tartan', now associated by most people with the precisely patterned, intricately cross-barred and multicoloured cloth, is itself a matter for argument. Some authorities claim it derives from the IrishScots words tuar and tan - meaning 'colour' and 'district' respectively. There is also a possibility that the word derives from a Middle French word, tiretaine, which referred to a quality of material, of a thin, coarse linen and wool mixture, while an Old Spanish word of similar root, tartana, which means 'shiver', and refers to a very fine, quality cloth, has been proposed as yet another possible source. The Gaelic word for tartan is breacan, meaning 'chequered', 'variegated' or 'speckled'. (Robert Louis Stevenson's hero in Kidnapped was called Allan Breck; 'Breck' meaning 'pockmarked'.)
In Scotland, by the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries the word 'tartan' was being widely used by English and Scots speakers for distinctively woven cloth coming out of the Highlands. In 1538, for example, King James V, the father of Mary Queen of Scots, purchased 'three ells of Heland Tartan'. However, the name seems to have applied to a type and quality of cloth rather than to a design, a usage that had changed gradually by the eighteenth century. Similarly, the original practice of making tartan from light rather than warm material was also steadily reversed over many generations. Nowadays, tartan is generally defined as a fabric woven in bands of coloured yarn that repeat in sequence, not only across the width but along the
length of the cloth. A new hue is formed wherever bands of a different colour cross. It is sometimes said that modern Highland dress bears little relationship to that worn in the past, but this is not the case. All national costumes evolve over the centuries and what we see today in Scotland is a stylised version of an ancient garb.
There were normally six main stages in weaving tartan: gathering the wool, preparing the fibres by combing it to the desired texture for soft or hard tartan, and spinning by a method involving a drop spindle, or distaff and spindle, in which the yarn or thread was spun by the fingers and wound round the bottom of the spindle. (This was later replaced by the spinning wheel, and ultimately by modern machinery.) The wool was then dyed, woven and finally stretched. This last stage, also known as waulking, was often accompanied by singing, during which jokes would be made about friends, frequently in impromptu verses; a tradition that has continued into modern times in the Harris-tweed industry.
Looms were normally upright and operated by one person, with the warp - the threads running the length of the cloth - fixed along a frame with spaces in between and weighted at the base. The lateral threads, the weft, were then woven in across this. Much faster horizontal looms with foot pedals came into use in the nineteenth century, when the manufacture of tartan became a cottage industry. Production later moved to the mills, where water and later steam-power turned the mill-wheels, until eventually tartan preparation evolved into the highly technical procedure of today. Some of the most important of the tartan manufacturers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, like the firms of William Wilson and Son of Bannockburn and J. & D. Paton, at Tillicoultry, below the Ochil Hills, supplied the army with tartan and also exported it all over the world.