Arbitrary Criticism

Kilts: A Breezy Path to Gender Equality

A Scottish solution to boring men's fashion.

By Catherine Martin April 21, 2015

No chafing happening here...

Recently, at a party, I told a young gentleman that I wrote a fashion blog and he puffed his chest up real big like men do when you’re about to get stuck listening to their opinion for the next 12 minutes while the filibuster never once solicits your opinion or even cares if you have one. “I don’t support the fashion industry,” he said. “It’s anti-man.”

This was news to me, as the last I’d heard the fashion industry was anti-woman, because it created unrealistic expectations about our bodies; before that, fashion was anti-minority, as minorities are being forced to toil in sweatshops to create the perfect seams in our jeggings. At his words I pulled at my hair and rent my garments. Alas, how could I have been so blind! Of course, the endangered white male! He needs our support so much. “You poor baby,” I cooed. “Please, tell me more of your plight.”

He wept in my arms. “Our fashion choices are so limited. Girls have so many options available to them – purses, scarves, jewelry. A man wears that stuff, he looks like he’s from Jersey.” I looked at this man’s T-shirt/cargo shorts combo, and my tears mingled with his. Truly, he was pushing the envelope of style and coming up short.

It’s sad but true. Men have absolutely no fashion options available to them. They are forever locked in unwashed blue jeans and T-shirts that they’ve owned since 1995. If only there were some other fashion options we could popularize for men...

I've got it. Kilts. The logical answer to men’s fashion evolution. With crazy Man Buns and distracting displays of beard running rampant across the country, it’s only natural that we chase this horse to its inevitable pasture. I don’t think kilts are only a great addition to men’s fashion because of their rugged manliness, and I certainly am not trying to set anyone up to be laughed at. I think kilts are a good addition into a man’s wardrobe for three reasons: overall style, versatility, and comfort.

You have to admit that kilts are pretty stylish. Traditionally, kilts are made in a man’s family tartan. As adorable as it is that every family has their own plaid in Scotland, this is America, and in this country we don’t go further than having family vacations. The result is that a man can have whatever pattern he wants on his kilt. Solid colors, floral patterns, another man’s family tartan. No longer are men boxed in to a few fashion choices! Grab a kilt to match every one of your T-shirts!

Versatility is a big deal with a lot of the men I know. They need to quickly move from day to night – working all day in an office to sitting on a couch, drinking beer and playing video games. You can do both of those things in a kilt. You can also ride a bike, go for a run, and play the bagpipes in a kilt. Not to mention, kilts come with a little purse, used to keep the fabric from blowing up and exposing all that raw rugged manliness with every gust of wind. Not only can you wear kilts anywhere, but you can carry as many accessories as you want with you while you do so. I’m a little unclear as to what kind of accessories men need, but I assume the list goes something like this: keys, wallet, drill bit set, catalytic converter for a ’76 Pontiac Firebird.

Comfort is of course the ultimate reason to wear a kilt. Personally I dislike wearing pants if I’m going to be doing much moving around. Look, it’s uncomfortable to have something rubbing up against your lady bits. I’m not going to claim to be an expert in man bits, but it seems to me like the chafing would be universal. I solve my problem by going out in skirts and the same five sundresses I’ve owned for the last three years. Until now, men have had no such option. But a kilt allows the same freedom of movement that girls have always been granted. And if the fashion industry truly is sexist, what is a better solution than that? Now all the style options women love—handy purses, gusty drafts straight up between our legs, multiple fabric choices—are all available to men as well.

I know that women have a lot of work to do to rectify our mistakes of the past, where we forced men to wear only a few different options. But I think we all know kilts can help smooth the way to freedom, and a stronger bond between genders.



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