Before theŽ45, six Independent Companies (of soldiery) were raised to police the Highlands of Scotland, so creating a Regiment called the Black Watch.

Before 1740, they used a dark tartan which came to be called the Black Watch. Its origin is still argued but when tartan was proscribed it became the Government tartan and is now a Universal one, that all may wear.

This Black Watch tartan became the basis of many variations involving white, red and yellow over checks as clan tartans.

Some later regiments evolved a tartan from elements present in the tartans of their founders. For example, the 79th Cameron Highlanders used elements from MacDonald and Cameron designs, being the brainchild of Alan Cameron of Erracht.

The Seaforth Highlanders wore the MacKenzie Tartan because they were led by the Earl of Seaforth, chief of the MacKenzies.

 Pipers were often clad in a brighter Tartan of which the Royal Stewart is the most famous, many others having been forgotten or continuing as clan tartans.

The Dress Erskine was authorised in 1928 for the Royal Scots Fusiliers. These simpler tartans have become used for dancing because of their bright and simple under check and potential for re-colouring as with the range of MacPherson Tartans on the market.

In 1881 the lowland Scottish Regiments adopted modified highland dress of doublet and tartan trews and, whilst clad in Government tartan the basic Black Watch was "differenced" with many different over checks as seen in the Lamont for the Cameronians.

The Royal Scots moved to Hunting Stewart In 1903, the King's Own Scottish Borderers to Leslie, by association with David Leslie, Earl of Leven, who raised them in 1889. The Royal Scots Fusiliers wore latterly the Hunting Erskine from 1948-1959.