About this project
A handmade product is more than just the sum of its parts. It has a story - a feeling that come from the process of it being put together and the heart of the maker. In this mass market world, something as simple as a custom made kilt can have a beauty and power all its own. Kilts have rarely been the focus of artistic projects but as one of the few bespoke men's garments remaining, it is time to see that process in a new light.
With a focus on detailed photography, this art book will take you on the journey of building a kilt - each step of the way from bolt of fabric to finished wrapped-for-mailing product. This book will include the story of Alt.Kilt - from its humble beginnings during my son's cancer treatment to being on the leading edge of kilt fashion. There will be also be extra photos of detail and custom work that is one-of-a-kind.
I will be using the Kickstarter money to work with photographers to get the best shots possible and for the actual publishing costs of the book. I want this book to be coffee-table quality... something with visual appeal, a unique edge and interesting story.
Building kilts for a career was never in my game plan but a lot of things can conspire to put you someplace unexpected. That being said, I love my work.
I had gone back to college as an adult single mom with two young kids to study biology with a focus on mycology. During my second semester of college, my two year-old son was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. I had to stay in school to keep our insurance but had to have classes that I could handle around his chemo, so I dived into theater and found a passion in Costume Technology. I started the kilt path on a lark, with someone asking me to make them a kilt based on a popular company's product and after I deconstructed their style, I quickly found my own. I made changes to make it my own product and put the word out.
There was this huge demand - a gap to fill in a tiny market and I dove in (without really knowing what I was doing or getting in to). Some companies charge more based on size - I decided right away not to do that because it felt like discrimination. Most kilt places have about 4-5 standard designs and offer them in 2-3 fabrics at any time. I decided to offer anything I could think of and everything my customers could dream up. Other places use a standard fit ratio and will not deviate from it (happens when you are making hundreds of kilts in factories). I decided to make kilts that fit every body shape that came along. What I really decided that Alt.Kilt would do... was to never say no.
I launched big with my art kilts - specifically my Steampunk kilts and have been going strong since then. I make my kilts - from washing the fabric to sewing on the buttons and it never gets old. One at a time, I get to focus on the individual order and make something unique for my customer. My art kilts are my passion - something truly one of a kind - with hand painted distress-work and hardware. (I love shopping for hardware - it is an addiction). Alt.Kilt is the only kilt company out there that makes custom handmade contemporary kilts - and we have shipped over 300 kilts worldwide this year alone.
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