National Argyle Day is celebrated annually on January 8 to encourage us to express our love for the pattern derived from the tartan of Clan Campbell, of Argyll in western Scotland. The pattern consists of overlapping motifs of diamonds and lozenges and is quite common in sock patterns and dress designs. Did you know that the Scottish Highlanders have worn the argyle pattern design in kilts and plaids and patterned socks since the 17th century? Knitters with skill have been knitting socks with varicolored, diamond-shaped areas on a solid background since the end of WWI.
History of Argyle Day
We have celebrated National Argyle Day on January 8 since 2008 to encourage us to express our love for all things argyle. It was initiated as a day to express our love for the pattern by wearing as much argyle clothing as possible.
Argyle itself is a style pattern that originated from the tartan of Clan Campbell, a clan from Argyll, a county in western Scotland. Scottish Highlanders have worn the pattern design in kilts, plaids, and patterned socks since the 17th century.
One of the reasons they became so popular was when Prince Edward, who would later become the Duke of Windsor, started wearing it to go golfing. He wore argyle jerseys, long socks, and trousers. Following World War I, designers are continuing to see a sustained interest in it and an even newer way to express its pattern in everyday clothing accessories. It had a resurgence as a fashion favorite in 2019, featuring on runways worldwide. Argyle proves that diamonds are not just a girl’s best friend!
Although today the design is commonly associated with golf, it has also been used in the uniforms of other sports, such as cycling, curling, and soccer. Major League Soccer team, Sporting Kansas City, 2013’s third kit featured an argyle pattern.
Argyle Day timeline
The Scots design their patterned tartan cloth.
Kilt designs, quite larger than the modern version, look like a cloak draped from the left shoulder.
The Belgian football team uses an argyle pattern design in 1984 and an updated version in 2018.
Payne Stewart wins the U.S. Open in 1991 wearing argyle socks — he is known for his choice of flashy tams, knickerbockers, and argyle socks.
Keely McAleer creates this textile celebration in 2008.
Argyle Day FAQs
Who was the first person to make Argyle?
Pringle of Scotland popularized the design. Pringle’s website says that “the iconic Pringle argyle design was developed” in the 1920s.
Is there a place called Argyle?
Argyll and Bute is a region in the western Scottish Highlands. There is also a town called Argyle in Texas, U.S.
What kinds of crafts use Argyle patterns?
Hand Knitting and crochet traditionally use the argyle pattern, and it has been painted onto pottery as well.
Argyle Day Activities
Wear an argyle dress or socks
One way to celebrate Argyle Day is to wear an argyle patterned dress at home or the office! Whether the pattern compliments your wardrobe or creates the popular clashing colors theme, go big or go home.
Drape it over your sofa
Argyle can add so much charm to your home when you drape it over sofas or beds as a duvet! Its quality of being ‘always in vogue’ makes it perfect for use as a complement to the charm of your home. If you want to go all-out, learn to knit or crochet an argyle pattern and amaze yourself and your friends with your creativity!
Share your favorite argyle pattern online
On Argyle Day, wear your favorite argyle clothing and share online. Assemble a different variety of patterns and visually interesting colors to share on social media using #NationalArgyleDay.
5 Things You Should Know About Argyle
It’s a name
The name ‘Argyle’ has been the first name of 142 people in the U.S. since 1880, and a surname of more than 1,000 people.
Popular with shorts in the 1950s
It was the height of style to wear long argyle socks with shorts in the 1950s.
A sign of rebellion
In Scotland, Archibald Campbell was the only one who rebelled against Mary, making argyle a symbol of opposition and rebellion.
Diamonds in an Argyle mine
The Argyle diamond mine is large, averaging 35 million carats per year till 2008.
It’s common on wallpapers and blankets
Besides clothing, argyle is most commonly seen on wallpapers, blankets, throw pillows, and socks.
Why We Love Argyle Day
Argyle patterned dresses are usually colorful and bright! They provide interesting visual stimulation too. Argyle lends itself to being used in a variety of fashion use cases, and that is perhaps one of the best things about it.
Argyle can be versatile! It lends itself to designers for use in a lot of cases to provide both simple visual intricacy and --- in different applications like wallpaper, blankets, throw pillows, and socks.
It’s designers’ dream fabric
Designers love argyle patterned fabric — sometimes just as much or even more than we do. The versatility of fabric patterned in argyle allows designers to dream up various combinations with other fabrics.
Argyle Day dates