New kilts for Scottish Jews: The invention of the "Kosher Tartan"

During the last few years, there has been a renewed interest in tartan products and now, the world's first "kosher tartan" is ready for production.

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August 24, 2008 17:05
2 minute read.
New kilts for Scottish Jews: The invention of the "Kosher Tartan"

jewish tartan 224.88. (photo credit: )

In Scotland, kilts are in fashion again and not only for ceremonial occasions. Historically, in the Jewish community though, there has never before been Jewish tartan - although at the outbreak of World War One many young Jewish men, mostly from the Glasgow area, were fitted for kilts when they joined the Scottish infantry regiments. During the last few years, there has been a renewed interest in tartan products and now, the world's first "kosher tartan" is ready for production. All profits from the web purchases will be donated to specific causes, such as the development of Israel through KKL Scotland. The idea for the "Kosher Tartan" invention began when a Glaswegian dentist, Dr. Clive Schmulian, sat next to Paul Harris, Editor of the Jewish Telegraph, at the KKL-JNF Charity Dinner in Glasgow with special guest of honour Hollywood Actress Goldie Hawn. Clive was wearing a Flower of Scotland tartan kilt and was being subjected to intensive questioning by Paul about whether there has ever been a Jewish kilt or Jewish tartans. "There aren't any," he realized, "so we commissioned Slanj, a leading kilt outlet in Scotland to come up with three designs. We put them to an online poll on the Jewish Telegraph's website, 10,000 people voted, one was chosen and the winning design was announced. Our aim is for the tartan to be worn by Scottish Jews, ex-pat Scottish Jews, members of Jewish organizations, individuals of any religion with links to the Jewish / Israeli communities, so we also expect interest from expatriates and Jewish people in Scotland." Designers created a beautifully subtle, plaid pattern for the tartan ties and kippot - Jewish men's head-caps - while the tartan used for the kilt, is made entirely of wool in adherence to Jewish laws called "shatnez" that forbid mixing certain fibers. The colors of the tartan include Blue & White of both the Scottish Solitaire and the Israeli flag with its Shield of David. The tartan is registered in the name of the Scottish Jewish Community - and will shortly be registered formally with the new Scottish National Register of Tartan. Brian Halley, Director of Slanj, said: "I was approached by Clive who wanted to commemorate 60 years of Israel and we talked about the new tartan. Although we design a lot of tartans for organizations, this was slightly different and it's very good to be involved." Slanj will also supply kilt accessories and they have designed a stunning kilt pin / pewter broach in the shape of the Star of David. . Stanley Lovatt, Chairman of KKL-JNF Scotland, said: "I think this is a wonderful idea, innovative and novel. It's more than likely then I'll get a kilt myself! Those of us that were born in Scotland are proud to wear the kilt, to be associated with tartan and to wear it with pride. I know, having worn tartan abroad, that it creates an incredible reaction." Rabbi Y.Y. Rubinstein, from Glasgow also had his words of praise. "It's a great celebration of two communities. It gives the Scots the opportunity to celebrate their Jewish-ness with their compatriots." It seems that the Israeli Ambassador to the UK has already been invited to come to be fitted with a kilt in the "kosher tartan." To order the Tartan click here www.kosherkilts.com The online shop http://www.kosherkilts.com/shop.htm will be open shortly. For more information, please visit our website at www.kkl.org.il/eng or e-mail ahuvab@kkl.org.il Sponsored content


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