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Choosing The Right Sporran

"When should I wear a daywear sporran and when should I wear a dress sporran?"

This is one of the questions we often get asked to explain. Here at Margaret Morrison we make every type of sporran for every type of occasion where a kilt is appropriate. Over the last 25 years we have built our reputation as the world's leading sporran makers and our team of highly experienced artisan craftsmen and women have an unrivalled skill set. We continue to innovate taking inspiration from Scottish history, most recently we launched a collection of sporrans inspired by the 17th and 18th Century and a collection of long-haired reeling sporrans for Gentlemen who love to dance the reel!
Because we get asked these questions so often we thought we would put together a useful guide to the different sporran types and how they can be worn.

History of The Sporran

The word 'Sporran' comes from the Gaelic word for 'Purse'. As Traditional Kilts have no pockets the sporran was formed out of necessity and early versions as far back as the 12th Century were referred to as a scrip or small drawstring pouch made from doeskin or calf leather, most likely to carry oats whilst roaming the Scottish Highlands. Kilts back then were extremely functional, they fell to the knee but also wrapped over the shoulder, the whole thing secured at the waist with some type of belt. With the wool being warm and waterproof it helped protect against the fierce Scottish weather and unwrapped could be used as a cloak or even a blanket when sheltering at night. The sporran would hang from the belt on either side of the hip, whereas today the sporran hangs in the front of the Kilt.

  Day Wear Sporrans

(or Day Sporrans)

Day Wear Sporrans are usually made from leather and in the style of a traditional purse. Designed to be worn on a daily basis, or to more informal events, simple in design with a leather lid and front, sometimes with pleated leather tassels added. Our collection of day wear sporrans feature a range of embossing, broguing and studding techniques. We have a collection of 11 different leathers for our day wear sporrans, all of which are designed to compliment the different clan tartans used for kilts. Our newest leather to the range is a beautiful shade we call Cognac.
You can view our range of day wear sporrans here.
All leather day wear sporran with thistle embossed lid and intricate tassels  made by Margaret Morrison

Semi-Formal Sporrans

(or Semi-Dress Sporrans)

Semi-formal sporrans or semi-dress sporrans bridge the gap between day wear sporrans and full dress sporrans so are a bit of a hybrid. Taking the shape of the day wear sporran usually with a leather lid then incorporating a fur or skin for the front body and finishing with chrome chains and bells the semi-formal sporran can be worn to events where tweed Highland wear such as an Argyll outfit is worn.
You can view our range of semi-formal sporrans here.
Semi formal seal skin sporran

Dress Sporrans

(or Formal Sporrans)

Dress sporrans are usually larger than day wear sporrans and more ornate with silver or silver plate cantles with Celtic inspired designs. Some are even inset with semi-precious stones. We use seal skin or bovine for our dress sporrans and finish with chain straps and bells. Dress sporrans can be worn more formally.

You can view our range of dress sporrans here.

Chinchilla Rabbit Dress Sporran


Full-Dress Sporrans

(Luxury/Fur Sporrans)

Full-dress sporrans are regarded as the most formal type of sporran. Anyone attending a formal event or gathering or a particularly important ceremony would choose a full-dress sporran. We make our full-dress sporrans using the finest furs such as chinchilla, fox, musquash and cayote. The cantles are more elaborate in design and the tassels are also usually crafted from the same fur as the body.

You can view our range of full-dress sporrans here.

Golden Island Fox Dress Sporran