The fabric

Wool fabric

Handspun and handwoven naturally-dyed wool. The width of the fabric varies slightly between 64.05cm and 65.5cm. Recently described to me by Peter MacDonald as a ‘rurally woven tartan’, which he believes is made from the wool of the extinct Scottish Dunface sheep.

Actual dates are unknown, as there is no written evidence, although the fabric dates after – at the very earliest- November 1775 due to use of quericitron dye. I have written a post about the dyes.

National Museum experts place it in the 1775-1785 period.

Linen lining

According to the family oral tradition, the flax was grown at Isabella’s home on the banks of Loch Ruthven. The same linen fabric is used to line the sleeves and bodice. It is a handspun, handwoven, thicker linen.

Original petticoat hasn’t survived.


The same natural-coloured linen thread is used throughout. Again provenance and date unknown.