Tartantown Ltd. was originally started as a convenient location for Highland dancers to buy their dance shoes "made in Scotland". As a teacher of Highland dancing, Heather Jolley wanted her students to have the same shoes as the Scottish dancers and she started to import them in 1976. Up to that point all Canadian dancers wore dance "slippers" made in Canada! From these humble beginnings in Heather’s basement the store grew to its first walk-in location at 500 Clarke Road, Coquitlam, BC. By this time, more items were in the inventory including tartan from DC Dalgliesh, dance shoes from other suppliers and a full-time dressmaker was employed.
In 1979 a piping component was added to the store and Terry Lee joined the company on a full time basis. With the added business in piping and drumming, the store continued to grow significantly and it relocated a larger premises at 555 Clarke Road. We now have over 3500 square feet of front and back store space.
With the knowledgeable expertise of its employees, Tartantown stocks the best and most desired products for individual dancers, pipers and drummers as well as Pipe Bands and the general Scottish community. All our kilts are made-to-measure in Scotland by professionally trained and experienced kiltmakers.
Kilt Rentals are a major part of our business. We have a full range of outfits for rental, including men’s and boy’s kilts in various tartans such as the Royal Stewart, Scottish National, Black Watch, Dress Black and Scotland Forever. We also supply Prince Charlie Jackets, sporrans, hose and brogues. These outfits are very popular for weddings, Burn’s Nights and any number of other occasions.
In addition, we have a large gift section of many attractive items such as pottery, jewelry, scarves and rugs, children’s clothing, music and Scottish novelties. Excellent Christmas, birthday or special event gifts are available for all ages.
From time-to-time Tartantown has employed many well known personalities in the dancing and piping world including Iain MacDonald (now P/M City of Regina) Alan Bevan (now P/M of the Grade 1 Simon Fraser University Pipe Band), Blair Cooper, Ben Parsonson, Don and Gord Jolley, Jack, Andrew and Colin Lee, Stuart Liddell (now the P/M of the Inverary & District Pipe Band), Reid Maxwell (L/D SFUPB), Dave Hicks, Richard Brown, Rob Bruce, John Sutherland, Kevin McLean, Rob Watt, Angus MacKenzie, Jean Remenda, Sandra Sim, Jeanette Bonar, Fiona Lee & Breanna Watt. We continue this tradition of employing knowledgeable pipers, drummers and dancers. Presently working at Tartantown are Alastair Lee, John Lee, Jack Lee, Fiona Lee, Nick Urbaniak and Sandy Meston.
Tartantown enjoys the position of being one of the largest suppliers to pipe bands, pipers, drummers, and Highland dancers in the world. Our reputation for fast, efficient and knowledgeable service is respected throughout our customer base and we enjoy a first rate business relationship with our suppliers.
The store continues to be owned by Heather Jolley with Terry Lee as the General Manager. We have been a stable presence in this field for over forty years and satisfaction is a guarantee.