Tuesday, November 3, 2009

I "Heart" Fall!

I love this time of year, when the leave change colors and the air is crisp. In North Texas, we don’t get a real fall, but I will gladly accept this brief transition.

I was washing dishes the other morning and looked out to our vine-covered arbor. Our backyard is a wild mess, but the arbor is beautifully decked out in its fall colors. I went out and snapped a couple of photos and was reminded of my first visit to the UK, to York, specifically. There I visited a woolen shop and was told that both sides of my family had surnames that were “septs” or protected families under Clan Buchanan. I also was told that the tartan for clan Buchanan was “one of the jazzy ones”.

Well, it is.

Don't know why it is rotated. Go figure!

That was 25 years ago. Since that time, I have visited the UK about seven or eight times and at least four of those times were month-long stays in Scotland. You might say I have fallen for Scotland in a big way!
In the Woolen Shops, especially in Scotland, there is always a wide array of tartans made up in several different forms: Kilts (for men), Kilted Skirts (for women), scarves, ties, caps, jackets, vests and so on. Some of the tartans are “jazzy” – even more so than the Buchanan tartan! And some are rather muted.

What most non-Scots do not know is that most tartans actually come in three forms: ancient, modern, and hunting. Ancient tartans tend to have a more muted tone because of the use of natural dye-stuff. Modern tartans have clearer, bolder colors because of the use of synthetic dyes. And Hunting tartans are a lot like the ancient tartans in that the colors are muted – sort of Scottish camo, if you can imagine that.
I have seen the “Bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomond” – Buchanan stomping ground -- adorned in the colors found in my tartan. The Buchanan tartan is no more jazzy than Mother Nature herself.

1 comment:

Kate said...

Wish I'd have known you sooner, I had a really cool vintage book on tartans that I sold in my polkadotsandals shop on etsy, I'm pretty sure that tartan was in there. I have a bit English in me on my fathers side but not Scottish. :)

I love the way certain leaves react with the less sunlight, I have two out side my door that put on a magnificent showing of magenta if the temps and days are just right.