Balmoral Tartan – The Royal Tartan

Balmoral Tartan – The Royal Tartan

This is the original Balmoral as designed by Queen Victoria’s husband. Prince Albert in 1853. While predominantly grey with overchecks of red and black the background contains threads of black and white yarns twisted together to achieve the appearance of the rough hewn granite so familiar in Royal Deeside.

It is worn by HM Queen herself as a skirt and several members of the Royal Family but only with the Queen’s permission. The only other approved wearer of the Balmoral Tartan is the Queen’s personal piper ( today the Estate workers and Ghillies wear the Balmoral Tweed).

D W Stewart wrote in ‘Old and Rare Scottish Tartans’ (1893), ‘Her Majesty the Queen has not only granted permission for its publication here, but has also graciously afforded information concerning its inception in the early years of the reign, when the sett was designed by the Prince Consort.’ There is also a smaller sett that was woven for the children’s clothes. Checked against original cloth sample woven by Kinloch Anderson, holders of the Royal Warrant. The Balmoral was originally woven only by Romanes & Paterson of Edinburgh.

Tartan Details – Balmoral (Royal)

The information held within The Scottish Register of Tartans for the “Balmoral (Royal)” tartan is shown below.  

STA ref: 1300

STWR ref: 1300

Designer: Albert, Prince Consort

Tartan date: 01/01/1853

Registration date: Not Specified

Category: Royal

Restrictions: Yes.

Balmoral Tartan – The Royal Tartan

Balmoral Tartan - The Royal Tartan
D W Stewart wrote in ‘Old and Rare Scottish Tartans’ (1893), ‘Her Majesty the Queen has not only granted permission for its publication here, but has also graciously afforded information concerning its inception in the early years of the reign, when the sett was designed by the Prince Consort.’ There is also a smaller sett that was woven for the children’s clothes. Checked against original cloth sample woven by Kinloch Anderson, holders of the Royal Warrant. The Balmoral was originally woven only by Romanes & Paterson of Edinburgh.

5 Responses

  1. Peter MacDonald
    | Reply

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, the information of the SRT site is wrong. It is merely a collation of information from elsewhere which is also incorrect. I’ve got the date back to at least 1852, possibly 1850 rather than the oft cited 1853. Given the technical nature of the original cloth structure I think it very unlikely that it was designed by Prince Albert although the idea formthe design may well have been his.

  2. Kori Lawrence
    | Reply

    The 14th photo–of a ‘member of the British royal family’–is of Queen Victoria’s grandson Prince (later Grand Duke) Ernst Ludwig of Hesse and by Rhine. It was taken sometime between 1886 and 1891.

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