To Kilt or not to Kilt? The Kiltman Manifesto


Seeking a manifesto, we sought out Kiltman, who lives in the border area between propriety and recklessness, a harder place to find than you might think. We located him and told him we needed a manifesto, to describe what makes a man. He replied brusquely, "Wearing one of my kilts won't make you a man; these kilts were made to be worn by real men." He then launched into a brief speech on manifestos and kilts and masculinity, which we quickly recorded: "There were a lot of manifestos in the 1920s and 30s, by emergent art movements and revolutionary factions. It was a time when values were in flux and hopes were expressed exuberantly. Kiltman likes manifestos, likes making statements, appreciates the creative pressure of having to sum up one's position. Most clothes don't need a manifesto. And yet I consider almost everything I say a kind of manifesto. In our time almost 100 years from the age of manifestos I referenced, gender norms are being called into question on a wide scale. Along with this shakeup, Kiltman is speaking. The Streetkilt is on the march. Traditional Scottish garb has been reinvented for our discordant age. "For a Kiltman, the walk and the talk always go together. You can't tell somebody the liberation of wearing my kilts, any more than a manifesto could stroll past you down the sidewalk. And yet when you're wearing a Kiltman kilt, you're always going somewhere. "By way of theory, what I'd say is this: Kiltman is the ethic of masculinity. In terms of an article of clothing, this indicates being functional, versatile, and strong. Whether industrial or leisurely, formal or recreational, Kiltman has the right garment for the occasion. He demands his kilt to be functional, but isn't trapped or defined by this function. My kilts are the essence of versatility, its pockets the very openness of attachment, which you can choose to wear or not, and then choose what fits your style and performance needs for that day. Whatever you're doing, wherever you're going, Kiltman can take it, and enhance the experience. This is strength, not brutishness, but sound design, quality materials, and in overall toughness the ability to meet any occasion head­on. Whether it requires the finesse of schmoozing at a banquet, the flair of a night of drinking and pub crawling, the comfort and coolness for an afternoon hiking, the ruggedness for a day of demanding work, or the tradition and innovation to outfit a contemporary Highland gamer — this is how Kiltman provides strength in function and versatility. This is the ethic of masculinity. I just make the things. And I love making em, and I'm going to continue making em. For me this ethic says there are men enough out there to wear them. " In freedom, Kiltman Kiltman Kilt Kiltman Kilts-Walk your own way

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