Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

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Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby KellyRain » Sun Dec 09, 2018 12:35 am

So a few days ago I found a really great Red/Blue/Black tartan O'neil of Dublin kilt on Japan's Mercari site for $35 with minor damage. It came overnight and had no visible issues. I was ecstatic to mange finding a $200 kilt at that low price.

So last night (Saturday in Tokyo) I decided to wear it to our cafe for an event where I didn't really know many of the people. Also I knew they would be older for the most part. And it was the first time I have been out in a bright colored kilt or skirt of any kind. My usual taste is black, grey etc... So needless to say, I was a bit uneasy.

I matched it with black Uniqlo heat tech tights since it was cold and I had to walk to and from. Dr. Martins 8 hole plain black boots, no yellow stitching. A plain black shirt tucked in and a casual simple leather jacket to stay warm on the way. And set off to the cafe, a trip that took me through two busy Shotengai (shopping streets).

So the reactions on the way were minimal. A couple cute younger girls smiled approvingly at me, a very fashionable guy also looked curious and gave a nod. Both felt great since Tokyo-ites usually ignore each other entirely and scurry on to wherever they are going.

On the bigger of the two shopping streets the lighting was bright and a couple elder ladies gave me a concerned look. But that happens a lot anyway for being a foreign resident, so decided not to take that too personally.

At the cafe the experience was so very different. My wife was running the cafe as usual and was very positive and supportive of my outfit choice. But to my surprise two of the 40 something ladies helping run the event became my instant fans. One said I looked like a prince from a novel. The other said it was about time men wore skirts and she loved kilts. They were a little too attentive for most of the evening for my taste, but my wife was having fun watching me be uncomfortable and is still teasing me about it this morning.

So the real test were the elder guys who were there. And to my surprise the most conservative guy there came up to me, and in very respectful Japanese said, I've always wondered about kilts, that looks good on you.

So my first outing in a bright colored kilt (mind you the only bright colored anything in my entire wardrobe) was a massive success. So now my wife is looking for a couple more O'neil kilts in colors for me. She already had a blue and green in mind. And also a vintage red she found online.

I am very lucky I have a supportive wife on kilts and skirts. But being musicians, artists and arts cafe owners, I know I have a rare advantage of her being used to people being different. And thankfully for me she is pretty unique and interesting too.

Hope you liked the story. And you know you can wear your kilt if you come out to Tokyo for a visit.
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Last edited by KellyRain on Sun Dec 09, 2018 2:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby Freedomforall » Sun Dec 09, 2018 1:42 am

Sounds like an awesome evening and a superb outfit. We are all wanting pictures though.
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Re: Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby r.m.anderson » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:23 pm

Not as bright red (Stewart) tartan that I was expecting.
A nice pleasing subdued red and black/blue and its fits you well.
Perfect standard length breaking at the knee.
You did well with the mix and match of shirt - tights footwear.
Noticeable departure from the standard kilt design is the
two buckle fastening on the left hip and a single on the right -
Normal is the reverse 2 right 1 left. Conclusion it was made for
a lefty or made with a reverse pattern for a lassie the bottom
hemming seems to flare out more than normal.
Nothing wrong in any event I just was not expecting that.
The photo is not a reverse image note the No Smoking
sign near the door entrance.

The O'Neil of Dublin must be the maker of the kilt and
not a clan - search of O'Neil clans reveals the tartan
design with a heavy application of the color Green.

Indeed you did make a big score on your find - enjoy your
bargain conversation piece.
"Kilt-On" -or- as the case may be "Skirt-On" !
WHY ?
Isn't wearing a kilt enough?
Well a skirt will do in a pinch!
Make mine short and don't you dare think of pinching there !
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Re: Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby shadowfax » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:33 pm

The black, Kangol(?) beret sets off the outfit well too. :)
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Re: Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby KellyRain » Tue Dec 11, 2018 1:08 am

O'neil of Dublin make kilts that get sold under other brands here in Japan. They are nearly 100% ladies kilts. But they fit me fine and they are available.

The buckles are inconsistent. I have two that have the double buckles on the right and two with the opposite and on the left. The cuts are more or less the same. I am not sure why the difference. I had wondered if the side of the buckles was a male/female or lefty/righty thing. But my lovely Scottish friend saw this one on Sunday and didn't notice the issue, so maybe it isn't a consistent thing with fashion kilts.

I'm not too concerned with male or female items. My priority is always do they look male enough to avoid confusion with cross dressing. But how I coordinate skirts, skirt pants is more alternative fashion so I don't think it is too much of a concern.

I love the fabric of O'neil Kilts. They are very find wool vs some of the rough less expensive kilts from online. I have two from abroad that are dense and strong but way too heavy for wandering around Tokyo. O'neil fabric is nearly exactly like Comme Des Garsons or Yohji Yamamoto kilts and meant to be fashionable and move freely, but cost a fraction of the designer kilt prices. I highly recommend this company's kilts if you can find one.

And yes, it is a Kangol. Weirdly enough the same hat I had in 1993 has returned to street fashion in Tokyo. The younglings here have discovered 1980s and 1990s fashion. The local 2nd hand shops have entire sections dedicated to terrible 1980s over colored sweaters. The ones we all threw away in shame ages ago now sell for $100 each to eager teens and early 20's kids. And Kangol hats are as common as Samuel L Jackson made them in the 1990s.

It is a little depressing to see my generation's fashion being revisited as "vintage". Now I know how the 1960s and 1970s fashionistas felt when we "rediscovered" their trends in the 1990s. LOL.
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Re: Red Tartan Kilt in Tokyo on a Saturday Night

Postby Caultron » Tue Dec 11, 2018 4:07 am

KellyRain wrote:...0It is a little depressing to see my generation's fashion being revisited as "vintage". Now I know how the 1960s and 1970s fashionistas felt when we "rediscovered" their trends in the 1990s. LOL.

Yeah, that's gonna happen. Welcome to, ah, maturity. Revel in it. And always remember that one good thing about being an old man is that you get to be a crazy old man. Rock on.
Courage, conviction, nerve, verve, dash, panache, guts, nuts, balls, gall, élan, stones, whatever. Get some and get skirted.

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