Welcome to
the forums at bobdunsire.com
bobdunsire.com forums bobdunsire.com forums
You can reset your password by going here. Be sure to try your current email and any email addresses you may have had in the past.
Otherwise please use the Contact Us link at the bottom of the forums. In order to help you, please provide the following info: Your Display Name from the old forum and any possible email addresses you would have used before. Without that info we cannot locate your account.


Go Back   Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums > General Discussion > Ladies' Room
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Ladies' Room For the Ladies.

Platinum Sponsors
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 08-15-2016, 06:23 AM   #1
Helvetica
Forum Regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Continental Europe
Posts: 279
Default So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

I played at a wedding on Saturday, and since I live on the continent and it's August it meant it was about a gazillion degrees in the sun. I hate wearing a kilt outfit with a capital HATE even on the best of days, and on Saturday I decided I just wouldn't be able to hack it. I made a last minute decision to switch up for a tasteful black dress with a tartan sash and a pair of comfortable red heels. I am so glad I did. Even though I was wearing black I was still wayyyyy cooler than I would have been if I'd been wearing a kilt/hose/collared shirt/tie/bonnet. I looked good. People liked my playing. I still had great conversations about piping and Scotland and Canada. And the bride and groom were thrilled. It was also sooooo comfortable to play my pipes without having to deal with all the extra fabric and dead animal bits one normally wears.

I've decided that from here on in if someone hires me as a piper I will happily provide music, but I'm not going to dress up as though I'm a man who belongs to a Scottish regiment. Since I'm not a huge sash fan either (I find the look a bit too grey-haired-lady-Scottish-Country-Dance-Society for my tastes), in order to still respect Scottish tradition and also dress somewhat formally, I intend to get a tartan dress in a comfortable fabric, perhaps like one of the ones below. The kilt outfit will be reserved for Remembrance Day, gigs with the band (obviously) and outdoor events where the weather requires something more robust than a dress.

Are there any other ladies who have ditched the kilt in favour of dressing like a woman?








Helvetica is offline   Reply With Quote
Gold Sponsor
Old 08-15-2016, 06:28 AM   #2
Helvetica
Forum Regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Continental Europe
Posts: 279
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

And if anyone wants to ague that standard piper's dress isn't a male thing it is. I've never in my life seen a woman voluntarily wear a kilt/waistcoat/jacket/tie/hose outfit outside of playing in a piping/drumming/military setting. It's a guy thing.
Helvetica is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 07:49 AM   #3
piper Q
Forum Silver Medal
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Currently Mississippi, who knows where next
Posts: 394
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

While piping is almost traditionally considered a male activity. I've never read anywhere that it was a strictly male activity recently adopted by women. With that comment made, I can think of absolutely no reason why you should not dress as you feel is appropriate and comfortable for yourself.

Historically the Kilt as we know it is a relatively recent adaptation of older style garments. Ad that depending upon your cultural heritage and the fact that Bagpipes are now world wide in dispersal, along with the more traditional forms piping of various cultures. All that I can say is wear what you are comfortable with.

You don't need justification, more than that. As for current historical aspects of comfortable wear just look to the Breton Biniou players. The Kilt may have some military significance with the British Isles but aside from that, well.

Cheers and enjoy what you do.
__________________
Breaching the peace? What bagpipes officer?
piper Q is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 08:00 AM   #4
bob864
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: South Carolina
Posts: 9,250
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

That dresses look nice.

Another option is a kilted skirt with a blouse. That might give you more possibilities as far as level of formality. I'm not that conversant with women's fashion. Might also be handy if you get two gigs close together -- easier to have two blouses than to launder a dress.
__________________
bob864 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 08:18 AM   #5
oldsoldier
Forum Gold Medal
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: MA
Posts: 505
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

Wearing the kilt is, indeed, a male thing. We have seen that demonstrated over and over and over again. I dont recall seeing women in the trad kilt getup until they began piping. Granted, my research on that topic is EXTREMELY limited, but, old regimental pictures that I have seen, are all men. And, as piping and the military are closely tied together, and, at least then, the military was fairly male centric, it only stands to reason that the kilt as a traditional uniform was male.
That being said, I am all for pipers dressing however they feel comfortable. But, and, I am sure that anyone who has ever been hired can attest: those that hire pipers have a certain picture in mind. That picture, like it or not, is usually kilted. If you disclose this before being hired, and they have no issue with it, then thats fine. But, I think it would be insincere (and I am in NO WAY stating this to ANYONE-just throwing it out there!!) if you didnt disclose that prior to being hired.
I think we are the only musicians in the world who everyone pictures to be dressed a certain way. If I had a nickel for every time someone asked if I had to wear a kilt to play-and combined that with the money from the STB requests-I would be rich!!
A kilt doesnt make a piper. IF it did, I would be good at it
__________________
Scottish Proverb; 12 highlanders and a piper make a rebellion
oldsoldier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 08:50 AM   #6
Helvetica
Forum Regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Continental Europe
Posts: 279
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piper Q View Post
While piping is almost traditionally considered a male activity. I've never read anywhere that it was a strictly male activity recently adopted by women. With that comment made, I can think of absolutely no reason why you should not dress as you feel is appropriate and comfortable for yourself.

...

Cheers and enjoy what you do.
Thanks for the kind words.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob864 View Post
Another option is a kilted skirt with a blouse. That might give you more possibilities as far as level of formality. I'm not that conversant with women's fashion. Might also be handy if you get two gigs close together -- easier to have two blouses than to launder a dress.
A good thing to keep in mind. Thanks for the tip!

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsoldier View Post
Wearing the kilt is, indeed, a male thing. We have seen that demonstrated over and over and over again.

..But, and, I am sure that anyone who has ever been hired can attest: those that hire pipers have a certain picture in mind. That picture, like it or not, is usually kilted.
Or worse. It's a man in #1 dress with a nicotine-stained mustache sporting an array of military medals who is so ancient they wax nostalgic about the days when they used to shoot elephants with a blunderbuss. I was once solicited to play a gig in a three-Michelin star restaurant for a Scottish themed night, and I proposed a trio comprising myself and two female friends (who were the only two piping friends I found who would be available, the fact we were all female was a coincidence). We would have worn our 100% coordinated very smart-looking band outfits, but were eventually denied the gig because the organizers had in mind "a more masculine image". That one kind of stung.

Quote:
If you disclose this before being hired, and they have no issue with it, then thats fine. But, I think it would be insincere (and I am in NO WAY stating this to ANYONE-just throwing it out there!!) if you didnt disclose that prior to being hired.
I fully intend to explain my intended costume and send pics to clients to so they know what to expect. I don't actually think I'll face many problems by doing this, I think they'll understand. (Because let's face it, most people are nice.) But I agree that being transparent is very important, thanks for bringing up this point in the forum.

Quote:
A kilt doesnt make a piper. IF it did, I would be good at it
This quote gave me a chuckle. Thanks for the laugh, and I'm sure you're a fine piper!
Helvetica is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 10:17 AM   #7
bob864
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: South Carolina
Posts: 9,250
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsoldier View Post
I think we are the only musicians in the world who everyone pictures to be dressed a certain way.
Orchestral musicians (men) nearly always wear a tux. Women are usually in all black. Sometimes they have dress codes in their contracts.
__________________
bob864 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 11:17 AM   #8
Andrew Lenz
Moderator
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Santa Cruz, California
Posts: 10,363
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

I think a woman piping in a skirt with a Scottish flavor is fine and almost preferred.

My only bit of advice would be to educate your paying customer of your attire options. If they are expecting a piper in a #1 uniform and you show up in a ruffled white blouse and a black skirt instead, the customer might not be happy. They are paying for an experience . . . that includes music and appearance. Same goes for a string quartet at a formal wedding—flip flops and T-shirts won't go over well. There's a visual expectation. The key is communication with the client. That said, if you show up wearing some tartan somewhere, more often than not, they'll be content.

Ultimately, my opinion is piping women shouldn't be hogtied to the male kilt/shirt/tie outfit.

The question is wether we'll ever get to the day where women will be in tartan dresses in the competition circle. Wouldn't that be a sight?

Andrew
__________________
Andrew T. Lenz, Jr.
www.BagpipeJourney.com - Reference for Bagpipers

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great." ---Mark Twain
Andrew Lenz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 11:28 AM   #9
Rooklidge
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: CA
Posts: 1,458
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

Lot's of dudes chiming in here, so I'll join the fray.
I think this...is cool.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qd63jGY-eSU
Rooklidge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 11:44 AM   #10
tamara
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northeast USA
Posts: 41
Default Re: So. Totally. Done. With wearing a kilt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rooklidge View Post
Lot's of dudes chiming in here, so I'll join the fray.
I think this...is cool.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qd63jGY-eSU
I followed your link, and saw another video of this piper, wearing a kilted skirt and black sweater with a lacy white ruffle. Very nice. Good options.
tamara is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Silver Sponsor

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:23 AM.