Pressure Mounts for Prince William To Wear Kilt in Scotland As Summer Break Approaches

Prince William of Wales wearing Kilt

To kilt or not to kilt? That is the question for Prince William as British royals prepare to spend their annual traditional summer break in Balmoral, Scotland this month. 

The pressure is high on the Prince of Wales as eyes are on him if he would finally wear Scotland's traditional garment, the kilt. 

Prince William of Wales wearing Kilt
The last time Prince William wore a kilt was when he was still a child

While most adult male members of the British royal family traditionally wore a kilt when in Scotland, Prince William was last seen wearing one when he was still a young boy, before the breakdown of his parent's marriage.

King Charles III wearing a kilt
Honeymoon photo of then Prince Charles and Diana in Balmoral

As a young man and until becoming the heir to the British throne in September last year, Prince William was not seen wearing a kilt. Even during his university days in Scotland.

A kilt is a garment resembling a wrap-around knee-length skirt. It is traditionally worn by men in Scotland. It is made of twill-woven worsted wool with heavy pleats at the sides and back and traditionally a tartan pattern.  Since the 19th century, it has become associated with the wider culture of Scotland, and more broadly with Gaelic or Celtic heritage.

Prince William of Wales wearing Kilt
Then Prince Charles wearing a kilt, pictured with his two young sons. August 1997

The King regularly wore a kilt when in Scotland

King Charles III regularly wears a kilt when he is in Scotland, since he was a young boy and until now that he is the monarch. 

His late father Prince Philip and his brothers all wore a kilt in their adulthood when in Scotland but Prince William has not seen donning this garment in his adult years.

Scrutiny was not thrown at him before but now that he is the heir to the throne and has official titles tied to Scotland - Duke of Rothesay and Prince and Great Steward of Scotland,  as well as Lord of the Isles, pressure mounts whether he would embrace the traditional Highland dress feature of the kilt. 

Prince Andrew wearing a kilt

So all eyes are now on the Prince of Wales as summer break approaches. The annual Braemar Games near Balmoral are expected to be attended by members of the royal family. King Charles and the late Prince Philip always wore a kilt when attending Braemar Games.

Prince William attended Braemar Games before but he did not wear a kilt.

Prince Philip and King Charles III wearing a kilt

King Charles III's trusted tailor said: "We would be delighted to make a kilt and jacket for the Prince of Wales. It would keep up a tradition and, especially being Lord of the Isles, it would be a perfect vehicle to popularize the traditional Highland dress – particularly to a younger generation", said John Sugden, owner of Campbell’s of Beauly, a two-Royal-Warrant-holding atelier near Beaufort Castle.

Family vacation in Balmoral. Prince William was seated in the center wearing a kilt with Peter Phillips and Prince Harry

King Charles III wearing a kilt

For the royal family wearing a kilt when in Scotland means showing solidarity and observing Scotland's tradition and culture.

But whether Prince William breaks the royal tradition of wearing a kilt or continue remains to be seen.

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