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Sunday Morning News
Tailor Revives Art of Kilt-MakingAired January 7, 2001 - 9:53 a.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MILES O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Now, I wouldn't exactly put myself in the category of an arbiter of fashion trends.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Really?
O'BRIEN: Would you?
PHILLIPS: Well, you know, yes, I think you're a pretty dapper dresser.
O'BRIEN: I'm borderline stodgy. But I am going to go out on a limb...
PHILLIPS: You said, I didn't.
O'BRIEN: ... and make a prediction. This is a trend and a fad that's going nowhere.
PHILLIPS: It's -- oh, you are heartless.
Well, Lilian Kim tries to tell us about how it is becoming a little bit of a macho fashion.
O'BRIEN: It's the kilt.
LILIAN KIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Stephen Villegas is a self-taught tailor. In his small workshop in Seattle, Villegas is selling what he thinks is the next big thing in menswear.
STEVEN VILLEGAS, DESIGNER: I want every guy to know that he can wear this comfortably, acceptably.
KIM: Say hello to the Utilikilt.
VILLEGAS: I'm air conditioned all the time. I'm cool. I'm comfortable. I'm the most comfortable person when I'm wearing one of these Utilikilts.
KIM: Made of sturdy cotton, these utility kilts have a cargo look, roomy pockets and even a place to hang your hammer.
Thanks to Internet word of mouth, sales continue to grow. VILLEGAS: It's the dress of the new revolution. We've been deemed many things, and that's great, groovy, far out.
KIM: At Seattle's Fremont Market, men are often seen sporting the Utilikilt. This weekly fair is where Villegas makes his aggressive sales pitch.
VILLEGAS: But I haven't been sick since I've been wearing one. We make them with our own hands. And we sell the hell out of these things.
KIM: Bryan Hildebrand is one of Villegas's biggest clients. He's bought four.
BRYAN HILDEBRAND: I'm a 300-pound guy, I'm a -- my clothing choices are pretty limited. This was something that looked cool, comfortable, casual.
KIM: There are big differences between the traditional kilt worn by Scottish warriors and the Utilikilt. But one thing remains the same, people still want to know, what are men wearing underneath?
HILDEBRAND: Typically when women ask me, I always -- my response is, good girls don't ask, bad girls find out for themselves.
KIM: Right now, Villegas is working 16- hour days to meet demand. As for the future, he says it holds no limits.
VILLEGAS: It's not how far I want to take this, it's how far mankind wants to take this.
KIM: Lilian Kim, CNN, Seattle, Washington.
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