Like all accessories for traditional kilt outfits, the fly plaid has a rich history of its own and adds an even more formal and decorative edge to this distinctive national dress. Back in the eighteenth, the fly plaid was first seen when shorter, more modern kilts became more fashionable rather than full length great kilts. The great kilt included a top half which could be used as a cloak or a hood and the fly plaid is a more modern incarnation of this garment, replacing the section which drapes over the shoulder. Today, fly plaids are normally worn for formal occasions and are fastened with an ornate brooch, a nod to the history of the kilt outfit but also a comtemporary and decorative accessory.
Fly plaids should match the tartan of your kilt and are worn over the left shoulder. Traditionally, they were worn with an epaulet jacket. However, they can also be worn with any type of Prince Charley or Argyll jacket for an extra dash of tartan in your formal outfit. Some fly plaids are sewn so that one corner is gathered prior to attaching the brooch for attractive pleats that mirror the kilt itself, however these can also be added by hand before fastening.