Well, I am very glad to report that at the Stone Mountain Highland Games this past weekend I had the pleasure to meet the man who is the new US distributor for this sock company, and so in the near future the Scottish Tartans Museum will be offering this line of hose though our gift shop.
I have yet to work out all the details with the company, but I may try to have these available for purchase before Christmas. If not, they will be available in the Spring of 2007. But I wanted to go ahead and give people a sneak preview of these hose that I am very excited about.
All of their hose are made of a 50% Merino Wool, 50% Arcylic blend, making them very soft, very comfortable, and easily washable (I reccomend washing in cool water on the gentle/delicate cycle of your machine, and hanging to air dry). We will have available their standard solid color hose (not pictured) in 18 different colors. What is pictured here are their Balmoral line of hose.
The Balmoral features a completely hand knit upper attached to a machine knit leg. The customer will have the option of choosing his own color combination, with up to 5 different colors in the same sock (the leg, the two colors of the basket weave, and the two color stripe at the bottom of the turnover).
In addition to their standard sock and the Balmoral, we will also be able to offer diced hose and full tartan Argyle hose. While the diced and Argyle hose will not be cheap, we should be able to offer them for less than they commonly retail for from most major Highland Dress suppliers. All styles of hose will also be available with "full form" legs for those with larger calves.
As I said, we are still working out the details, but the standard hose should retail around $45, with the custom made Balmoral being around $125.
Another exciting offering are the matching garters that will also be available. These are not colored flashes on elastic garters, as are commonly seen, but true woven garter ties. They are a bit different than traditional tied garters, though. The way they are made, they have enough elastic to them that you simply wrap them twice about the leg, tuck one end inside the garter, and the whole thing stays in place all day.
I purchased two pair this weekend and find them to be most comfortable! Like the hose, they are available in a wide variety of colors and I may one day replace all of my elastic garters with these ties. (I'll have to post some pictures showing how they are worn later on).
So be on the lookout in the coming weeks for a new offering through the Scottish Tartans Museum, and of course I'll post updates here when the new hose are available.
- Update from 11/1/06
I just placed a fairly good sized order which I should recieve delivery of in a week or so. What I'll be getting are the standard (single colored) kilt hose, which we are calling the Lewis hose, and the garter ties that I mentioned in the blog entry. The Lewis hose will be $45. The garters will between $20-$25 a pair.
The Balmoral hose (which are the ones pictured in the post) will be available at some point in the future -- we are still working out what the prices might be for the balmoral, diced, and full tartan hose (though they should retail around $125 for the Balmoral, $150 for diced, and $200 for full tartan).
The colors available (in both the hose and the flashes) will be:
St. Andrews Blue
Now, I know that list doesn't do anyone a whole lot of good without pictures. I've asked our supplier if they have any web-ready pictures, either of the hose or of a
color chart to send me. If not, I'll be photographing everything as soon as the inventory arrives and posting pictures.
I'll definitely be photographing a little "instructional" on how to wear the garter ties. I think these are going to be a really good seller, so long as people can see how they are worn. I think they look better and feel more comfortable than the
typical elastic garters.
We will still continue to carry standard kilt hose from the major suppliers that we sell for $21.95 and the standard garter flashes for $17.95. These are good quality items and there is absolutely nothing wrong with them. But these new items from Hawick are going to definitely be a step up for those who want that extra bit of quality and craftsmanship in their Highland wardrobe.
I'll post more when the stock arrives (or if I get pictures before then). In the meantime, if anyone has questions, let me know!