How To Add Some Royal Style To Your Home

11th May 2021
How To Add Some Royal Style To Your Home

The royal family is never out of the news, although in recent months much of it has been unhappy with the passing of the Duke of Edinburgh and the issues with Harry and Meghan. But for most fans of the royal family, such things come and go, leaving a grand institution still standing tall.

Quite apart from the status of the monarchy, its role in grand occasions of state and its rich history, there is also a great deal of grandeur associated with the various royal castle and palaces. While some may resent that, others will seek to capture a bit of that style for their own home.

Come August, the royals will hope to be gathering at Balmoral Castle for their summer holidays, at a time when the country at large will, hopefully, live with few or no restrictions.

This traditional Highland haunt is a grand place, set in a vast spacious estate near Braemar in the Cairngorms. Suffice to say, most of its aspects cannot be copied by the average householder; after all, most homes don’t have great halls with Monarch of the Glen antlers hanging on them, or spacious grounds containing spectacular gardens with a backdrop of broad, heather-coated mountains.

However, scale is not everything; the styles, colours and motifs that characterise the property can be recreated wherever you live with some very distinctive touches.

The easiest way to start is with some Balmoral Tartan Cushions. Not only do these provide great home comfort when you are sat on the couch, but also offer a taste of the distinctive tartan style that was adopted by the royals - and apparently designed by Prince Albert - when Balmoral was first acquired by Queen Victoria in the 1850s.

History buffs will know this is of greater significance than some might imagine. Nowadays, tartan is generally associated with the whole of Scotland, but for centuries it was mostly worn by the Highlanders, with each design indicating a particular clan. However, everything changed after 1746.

The Jacobite cause - the bid to restore the Stuart family to the throne after the Glorious Revolution of 1688 - had seen many incidents and uprisings over the decades. However, none was more notable than the 1745 rebellion, when the would-be Stuart King, Charles Stuart, landed in Scotland and secured a series of victories with an army made up mostly of Highlanders.

As the prince - Bonnie Prince Charlie as he was known - swept southwards, the government became increasingly worried. However, having marched through northern England and got as far south as Derby, the expected assistance of a French invasion never materialised and the Jacobites retreated back to Scotland.

They were followed back by the government forces and finally routed at the Battle of Culloden in 1746. But such had been the stir caused by the rebellion that the reprisals were severe, among them the deliberate banning of what were seen as Highland clothing and military symbols such as kilts, belted plaid and bagpipes.

Contrary to popular belief, tartan itself was not fully banned, but its use was restricted to women and soldiers until 1782 and the production of it declined greatly as Highlanders adopted Lowland dress styles such as long trousers, short jackets and hats.

For most of the next century Highland culture was suppressed and Scotland was occupied with finding a new role as part of the union with England and Wales it had joined in 1707, but when the royals started wearing tartan, the old stigma was swept away and tartan was able to make a comeback as one of the most distinctive symbols of Scottishness.

Of course, if you want to give your home a hint of Scotland, there are many other tartans you can include in your furnishings. But only the stylish slate grey version pioneered at Balmoral - and which only the royals are actually allowed to wear as clothing - will provide a true reflection of royal Deeside.    

All this may combine well with other aspects such as pictures of Scottish scenery on the wall, or indeed other royal aspects such as items with royal insignias on.

With Balmoral being open for the public to visit for much of the year and the area around it having plenty of visitor appeal for those who love the mountain scenery and want to ‘bag’ a few peaks, many will have taken the opportunity to enjoy a trip there.

Having done so, smart furnishings bearing the tartan style will help stir great memories as well as providing fine home comforts.