Well plaid: kilt shop owner calls it a day

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A LONG standing Ellon business is set to cease trading, as the owner looks forward to a well-earned retirement.

Moira Ironside will officially close MacKenzie Kilts on Saturday, January 28, after thirteen years of running the highlandwear shop on Ellon’s Market Street.

Speaking to the Times, Moira said that it was not a decision she had taken lightly, but that she was looking forward to her retirement, and would be leaving the business with many good memories.

“We’ve been open since 1999,” she told the Times. “When the shop opened, it was the day of the last ever Ellon Raft Race, and the town was really busy. We had a piper for the opening, which was a nice touch and made the day a bit special.”

She told the Times that she would be closing Mackenzie Kilts rather than selling it on, as she was seeking a quiet retirement, and that it had been difficult finding someone to take over the day-to-day running of the shop.

She also added that the demand for highland wear had increased exponentially since the shop first opened, with kilts and trews an essential outfit to any public event.

“When I got married, my husband wore a suit,” she said. “The kilt was something that was worn for specifically Scottish-themed occasions like Burns Suppers. But highlandwear is hugely popular now, with people wearing kilts to weddings as a matter of course - and I think that’s partially a function of the many beautiful tartans there are to choose from nowadays. There’s literally something for everyone.”

The shop supplies hire kilts, as well as offering traditional tailoring facilities, and will continue to trade until January 28th. Moira told the Times that there would be a sale of all highlandwear items over the coming weeks, and that anyone seeking to boost their highland collection would find it worthwhile to pay a visit.

She added that her time at the shop had been extremely rewarding.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the business - when I first opened the shop, I didn’t know how it would go, but the response from the people of Ellon was hugely positive, as well as from my customers in Inverurie, Fraserburgh and Peterhead. I’d like to offer my sincere thanks to my loyal, new and past customers.

“And, of course, I have to thank my able-bodied assistant Joan Geddes, who has worked with me for ten years.

“I’m looking forward to retirement - I’ll be playing more golf, and will get the opportunity to spend more time with my husband and my grandchildren.”

On one last note, she said that the ‘big highlander’ at the entrance to the shop would soon be finding a new home.

“He’s going to the Gordon Highlanders Museum in Aberdeen.” she said.