A HIGHLAND designer has won praise from a number of sporting stars for the stylish kilt she has produced to be worn by Team Scotland during next year’s Commonwealth Games.
Siobhan Mackenzie, of Fortrose, will see her bespoke designs take centre stage when Scottish athletes participate in the opening ceremony of the games at the Carrara Stadium in Gold Coast, Australia next April.
She says she was humbled to have been chosen to design the women’s kilt and delighted with the comments it has received from athletes.
"For a young person in business it is a huge, huge goal for me to design for my country," she said. "I am so honoured."
Judy Murray, mother of tennis star Andy Murray, called Miss Mackenzie "one of Scotland’s brightest young fashion design talents" and said she loved the ladies’ kilt.
Runner Lynsey Sharp, who battled back from illness to win silver in the 800m at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, was thrilled to model the kilt.
"It’s absolutely beautiful and I think it’s definitely something I will wear again," she said.
"I love Siobhan’s designs so I was really excited to hear she was designing the women’s outfit for Team Scotland.
"The parade uniform is always a huge talking point, everyone is going to be excited to see it and try it on, and I am sure they’re going to be really proud of it.
"The parade brings everyone together and makes you feel like one team and it will be fantastic to see everyone wearing it together at the games."
As the last Commonwealth Games hosts, Scotland will be the first team to walk into the stadium at next year’s Australian event.
Team Scotland deputy chef de mission, Elinor Middlemiss, was proud to work with Miss Mackenzie.
"It is always important to make sure the female team members don’t feel like an afterthought when it comes to the parade uniform," he said.
"So it has been brilliant to work with such an exciting young designer like Siobhan and see her bring such a contemporary twist to their kilts and I am sure they are going to love it."
Miss Mackenzie worked behind the scenes on clothing alterations for Glasgow 2014, sparking her interest in becoming involved further with Team Scotland.
Since then she has launched her own business and established herself as an international, luxury brand.
Her clothing is currently available for sale in Bergdorf Goodman – one of New York’s most elite department stores.
"It does just seem to be one thing after another, which is great because I am trying to grow a worldwide brand that has been born and bred in the Highlands," she said. "It is just really exciting times and I cannot wait to see what is going to come next."
Miss Mackenzie was based in Glasgow for seven years but is now back in Fortrose.
"My brand started with the inspiration of my Highland roots and the Clan Mackenzie and it is good to come back to where it started," she said.
She first pitched her ideas to Team Scotland officials in January.
She added: "I’m truly honoured as a young female entrepreneur to have had the opportunity to design for the women of Team Scotland.
"I have injected my innovative design style into the womenswear look with the end goal in mind being not only that I want to represent a modern-day Scotland but also that I want the female athletes to walk out into the opening ceremony feeling great in their outfit."