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From the Court of the Lord Lyon

Wearing of Sashes by Ladies in Evening Dress

Lyon Court Leaflet 4



The manner of wearing tartan sashes or light scarves had customary significance even two centuries ago, and whilst the wearing of sashes in any particular manner has so far no legal significance, a due respect for tradition suggests that uniform practice, and implication consistent with custom, is desirable. The difference methods undermentioned to wearing such are appropriate for ladies in different circumstances. All these suggestions are based on a careful study of old portraits, prints and traditional practice, and bear the authoritative approval of the Lord Lyon King of Arms.

Styles of Scottish Sashes

No. 1 Style worn by clans­women. The sash is worn over the right shoulder across the breast and is secured by a pin or small brooch on the right shoulder.

No. 2 Style worn by Chief tainesses, wives of clan chiefs and wives of the Colonels of Scottish Regiments. The sash which may be rather fuller in size is worn over the left shoulder and secured with a brooch on the left shoulder.

No. 3 Style worn by ladies who have married out of their clan, but who still wish to use their original clan tartan. The sash usually longer than No 1 style, is worn over the right shoulder secured there with a pin and fastened in a large bow on the left hip.

No. 4 Style worn by country dancers or where any lady desires to keep the front of the dress clear of the sash (as, for example, when wearing the ribbon of a chivalric order, or any orders and decorations). This style is similar to the belted plaid, and is really a small arisaid. It is buttoned on at the back of the waist, or is held by a small belt, and is secured at the right shoulder by a pin or small brooch, so that the ends fall backwards from the right shoulder and swing at the back of the right arm.

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