Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images
The kilt worn in the movie "Braveheart" is called the feile mor in Gaelic, or great kilt. It's fashioned from one long piece of cloth and serves not just as a Scottish Highlander's clothing but a hood to protect him from the elements and a blanket to sleep on at night. The plaid in the fabric, called tartan, was developed after the great kilt and was used to identify a Scot's clan and as a camouflage in battle. Gathering enough wool to create a great kilt often took a year and then it would take several weeks to weave into the kilt fabric.
Purchase woolen cloth with a plaid pattern. If you want to be truly authentic, research your Irish or Scottish ancestors' clan colors and pattern, called a tartan. The fabric should be 9 yards long by 30 inches wide; this is actually the origin of the phrase "the whole nine yards."
Cut the fabric in half using scissors so that both pieces are 4 1/2 yards by 30 inches.
Lay the two pieces on top of each with the right sides together.
Sew a seam using needle and thread along the 4 1/2 yard side. When you open the fabric it will be 4 1/2 yards long and 60 inches wide. These are the generally accepted dimensions, although a Scot of a larger girth might need up to 6 or 7 yards of fabric. The hem should fall at about mid-knee.
Sew pleats into the portion of the great kilt that falls below your waist, or pleat the grand kilt every time you put it on.
- Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images