Scottish Feather Bonnet

The Scottish feather bonnet or cheap feather bonnet is a type of military headdress used mainly by the Scottish Highland infantry regiments of the British Army from about 1763 until the outbreak of World War I. Feather bonnet is now mostly worn by pipers and drummers in various bands throughout the world. It is also worn in a similar fashion by regiments in various Commonwealth armies.

The original feather bonnet as supplied to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) for over 30 years. Available as a 4-tail regimental feather bonnet (5-tail officers bonnets for the Scots Guards available on request).

These feather bonnets are manufactured by hand in the UK to MOD standards using the highest quality materials. Real ostrich feathers dyed in-house to give maximum wet and light fastness. Knitted woollen dicing, genuine leather straps and genuine leather hat bands finish off a feather bonnet of the highest standard; not to be compared with imported imitations.

Red/black/white dicing (other colours available on request).

4-tail regimental feather bonnet. The 5-tail Scots Guards officer’s feather bonnet is available on request.

Hackle not Include. Please order separately


The feather bonnet began with the knitted blue bonnet with a chequered border. This was propped up and worn with a tall hackle. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the highlanders who wore this hat began to add ostrich feathers to decorate it. This decoration evolved into full coverage of the original bonnet. The ostrich feathers were then entwined into a lightweight cage, producing the height. The feather bonnet has one or more (usually 4 or 5) “tails” that hang down below the headband, and the regimental badge and hackle are displayed on the left.

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