SHPB DRESS MANUAL
The following information is taken from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association (RSPBA) Drum Major Dress Regulations (April 2008), the Regimental Drum Major Association Dress Manual for Pipes and Drums (v.2.0 2007), the Sierra Highlanders Pipe Band Book One (the Red Book) and the U.S. Army’s Drill and Ceremonies Field Manual (FM 22-5, Dec. 1986).
“The uniform is commonly a military uniform such as Full Dress or a common national dress such as Day Wear. It must be worn correctly. To do otherwise is to insult many Scottish military units rich in history and sacrifice. The correct wearing of civilian dress will display a sophistication that those in the know will appreciate…A band that is smartly dressed will be remembered.”
“A properly and correctly dressed band will gain credibility from those knowledgeable about proper dress. A band dressed incorrectly may be summarily dismissed as not being credible by judges or other bands.”
“For civilian bands…care should be taken to not offend those that are serving or have served in Scottish or Irish or Scottish-tied or Irish-tied military units. This can be done by keeping…in mind;
1) Wear the uniform correctly.
2) Be mindful of honours bestowed upon particular regiments. For example, red hackles are a privilege that only the Black Watch may wear in the UK and Canadian military.”
“It is particularly disrespectful to Scottish Military units to wear their uniform inappropriately or incorrectly.”
THE UNIFORM OF THE SIERRA HIGHLANDERS PIPE BAND
There are four orders of dress described in full below. There are two color schemes – White shirt with off-white hose and Blue shirt with blue hose. Ensure you know what the call is prior to band engagements. The basic distinctions of orders of dress are;
No.1 (Formal) – Jacket, Vest, tux shirt and bow tie. Worn during formal occasions like Burns Supper and Weddings
No.2 (Jackets) – (aka “Day Wear”) Jacket, Vest, Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short Sleeve Shirt and band tie.
No.3 (Shirt Sleeves with Vest) – Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short Sleeve Shirt, Vest, and Tie.
No.4 (Shirt Sleeves) – Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short Sleeve Shirt, Waist Belt and Tie.
UNIFORM COMPONENTS AND WEARING THE UNIFORM
* denotes items supplied by the band (see the Quartermaster, your Pipe Sergeant or Drum Sergeant). All other items are the responsibility of the band member.
Plain Glengarry *
– Worn not more than 1″ above left eyebrow, 1/2″ above right eyebrow, canted to the right slightly, and with point of Glengarry aligned with nose.
– Clean and in good repair. Tapes pressed and without creases.
– Worn indoors only while under arms (pipes, drum, mace).
Hackles/Feathers – Not Worn.
– Attached securely to headgear centered on cockade. – Clean and polished.
– Design is Bandsman’s choice.
– Not worn.
Black Argyll Jacket *
– Clean and no creases evident.
– All buttons present, design properly aligned and firmly attached. – Lapel pins not permitted.
Black Vest *
– Clean and no creases evident.
– All buttons present, bottom button left undone, design properly aligned and firmly attached.
– Belt not worn with vest.
Inverness Cape * (issued with rain hat/storage pouch)
– Clean with no creases.
– All buttons fastened except at the neck. Collar down. Drummers may wear their capes differently to accommodate their instruments but it must be uniform throughout the drum corp, see your Drum Sergeant.
– Usually worn during inclement weather only.
Military Decorations – Not worn.
Lapel Pins and Tie Pins – Not worn.
Rank Pins (Collar dogs)*
– No.1 (Formal Dress) – 1 Gold Rank Pin on Right Lapel One and a half inches below notch and centered.
– Nos. 2,3&4 – Silver Rank Pins on both collars 1″ up from point of collar and centered. – Only issued by the band on the occurrence of the appointment or promotion; in other words, the band only buys the first set.
Shirt and Tie
– The shirt should be clean, pressed and all buttons fastened.
– Center line of shirt should match center line of kilt.
– No.1 (Formal) Dress – White Tuxedo Shirt is worn with Studs and Cuff links. Black Bow Tie. No Collar Dogs worn.
– No.2 Dress (Jackets and vests) – Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short Sleeve Shirt (epaulets and pocket flaps). The band initials SHPB should be embroidered, all capital letters, in 3/4″ Helvetica Bold type in dark blue thread centered on the left shirt sleeve cuff. Collar Dogs worn. Black SHPB Logo Tie* should be fastened securely around the neck with a Double-Windsor Knot tight in the centre under the points of the collar. SHPB Logo should be visible in its entirety above vest. No tie pin permitted. Waist belt not worn.
– No.3 Dress (Shirt sleeves with vest) – Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short
Sleeve Shirt (as above). Collar
securely around the neck with a
of the collar. SHPB Logo should
permitted. Waist belt not worn.
– No.4 Dress (Shirt sleeves) – Light Blue or White “Aviator” Style Short Sleeve Shirt (as above). Rank Pins on both collars 1″ up from point of collar and centered. Black SHPB Logo Tie* should be fastened securely around the neck with a Double-Windsor Knot tight in the centre under the points of the collar. Tip of tie should touch top of belt buckle. No tie pin permitted. Waist belt worn. On especially hot occasions the P/M may elect to forgo ties in which case the topmost collar button shall be undone.
– Ancient MacKay tartan, pleated to the blue stripe.
– Inside and outside aprons securely fastened by buckle and resting just above the half way mark of the kneecap.
– Use the strap from the inner apron to grip as tight as is comfortable. The straps on the outer apron should not be so tight that it distorts the set of the kilt at the waist
Dogs worn. Black SHPB Logo Tie* should be fastened Double-Windsor Knot tight in the centre under the points be visible in its entirety above vest. No tie pin
line or causes the bottom front left pleat to “kick”.
– Center line of kilt (as determined by the pattern) to be centred at front of body. – Hem to be even in height from front to rear and side to side.
– Clean, pressed with no creases evident.
Black Leather Sporran with chain *
– Worn centrally over front apron of kilt.
– Cantle is one hand’s breadth below waist belt buckle.
– Chain brought up and hooked over top-most kilt buckles at sides and strap hidden under waist belt, passing under both belt loops. Drummers may wear their Sporran differently
to accommodate their instruments but your Drum Sergeant.
– The sporran should square the area – All parts clean and in good order.
it must be uniform throughout the drum corp, see between the hips and the knees.
Waist Belt *
– Not worn with vest.
– Worn firm to body so as to allow only one finger to be inserted between belt and body. – Runners on belt to be pushed up hard to belt buckle.
– Worn level from front to back of body.
– Worn over sporran belt passing through both belt loops.
– Clean with buckle polished and centered at front of body. Buckle worn with ribbon design at bottom.
Kilt Pins (optional)
– Clean and tidy.
– Bottom of device is up 4 inches from the hem, and longitudinal center of device lies inches in from the right edge (not including the selvedge fringe) on the front right side of the front apron of the kilt.
– Kilt makers recommend against kilt pins. They put holes in the fabric and in worst cases may cause the kilt to tear if caught on a drum, etc. If you use a kilt pin, only pin the front apron.
– Design is Bandsman’s choice.
– Worn with No.1 (Formal) Dress only if a haggis is being presented.
– Blue or Off-white “Piper’s Kilt Hose” with diamond pattern top.
– Worn with the tops three fingers distance from the bone on the outside of the knee joint. Hose cuffs shall be 4 inches.
– Seams should be vertically straight. The hose tops/turn-downs should be horizontally even and even front to back.
– Clean and tidy.
Red Flashes *
– Worn on both legs with 2.5″ of the flash exposed below the turn-down of the hose.
– Leading edge of the flash should be vertically worn in line with the front of the leg. – The adjacent edges of the common two tab flashes should be touching (i.e. no gaps between the tabs.)
Sgian Dhu (optional)
– Worn inside the hose of the right leg centered above the rear-most flash on the front right portion of the leg.
– Handle only showing, scabbard and metal trim concealed by hose.
– Clean and polished.
– Ebony, regimental style handled Sgian Dubhs are worn with Formal Wear or Day Wear. Horn or antler handled Sgian Dubhs are worn with Day Wear only.
– Black Ghillie Brogues. Black Wing Tips or Plain Black Dress Shoes acceptable. – Clean, polished and in good repair.
– Black Laces – For Ghillie Brogues long enough to be tied as follows; pull laces tight, twist the laces together three times at mouth of shoe, pull laces around leg, cross once at rear and tie horizontally in the mid point at the front of the leg. Tie with a double bow. No more than two fingers should be able to be inserted in loops of bow. Trim free ends to hang no more than 2.5″ from knot. To prevent untying add a second twist when tying the second throw, forming a double overhand knot with the bows.
– Please do not put ghillie laces in a pair of not-ghillies. You are fooling no one. Dark oxfords or wingtips are very acceptable footwear, but not with the long laces. If a pair of shoe flaps with buckles can be found, they can make ordinary oxfords look pretty good. The flap lays over the tongue and hides the laces giving them a nice look. Finished shoelace bows not to be longer than 4 inches across. That means they hang 2″ and 2″ from center knot.
– On both legs, laces, bows and tails should be symmetrical to each other.
Pipe Cords *
– Pipe Major – red silk cords and tassels.
– Pipers – red wool cords and tassels.
– Spacing between the drones at the point of pipe cord attachment is determined by the distance between the tips of the thumb and little finger of the individual piper’s opened hand.
– Ensure free end of bass drone cord does not reach tops of tenor drones.
– Not Worn in competition settings
Pipe Bag Cover *
– Black Velvet with Red Fringe.
CARE AND MAINTENANCE OF THE UNIFORM
Your uniform should be clean and well pressed. This is the responsibility of every band member. Additionally, when the uniform is turned back in to the Quartermaster, it should be returned clean and in good repair.
Headgear Ribbons – After ironing, you can keep headgear ribbons crease free by keeping them pressed between two pieces of cardboard (clipped together) during transit. Using a damp ironing cloth when ironing at high temperature will prevent the ribbon from developing a sheen.
Belt and Sporran – Polish them along with your shoes with a good boot polish. Transport them in a plastic bag to avoid marring other uniform parts.
Kilts – If you have your kilt dry cleaned and pressed have the pleats basted (loosely stitched to prevent them from spreading and fanning out as they are pressed). If you touch up iron, only iron the kilt from the back. This will avoid a sheen from developing on the visible side. Using a damp ironing cloth when ironing at high temperature will prevent a sheen as well. Some kilt makers recommend rolling a kilt up instead of using a kilt hanger to keep your kilt wrinkle free. Hang kilts inside out to store.
Shoes – Don’t forget to blacken the outside of the sole when polishing. A toothbrush may be used to clean and polish the crevice between the leather body and the sole of the shoe. Additionally, polish the inside of the heel. Be sure to use shoetrees in your brogues.