Tomfoolery with Fred MacAulay

  • By Stewart Christie
  • 13 Apr, 2017

Scottish comedian and formally BBC Radio Scotland presenter, of 18 years', Fred MacAulay is a long standing and valued Stewart Christie customer. We spent the afternoon asking him a few questions about the comedy circuit and his lesser known passion for outdoor pursuits.

Q Name?
A Fred MacAulay

Q Title & Profession?
A Comedian, stand-up variety.

Q  After completing a degree in accountancy, what spurred you to follow a path into stand up comedy in the early 90's?
A I’d known I wanted to be in entertainment from an early age, but hadn’t a clue how to go about it. Accountancy was a temporary diversion! I was spurred into taking action around the time of my 30th birthday. It was the first time I’d marked out a decade of my life and it seemed to have passed by very quickly.
Q With so many comedy festivals running in locations all over the globe, do you still favour the Scottish comedy scene in it’s style and humour?
A The Comedy Festivals are great fun, but generally it's where you go when you’ve got a fully fledged show. Anyone in stand-up comedy will tell you that there’s no greater feeling than trying out a new ‘bit’ or making something up onstage while performing. You don’t get to do the former at Festivals. The Scottish Comedy ‘Scene’ didn’t exist 30 years ago. I’m delighted to have seen the progression to where we are now and to have been part of the growth.
Q  We have enjoyed working with you, over the years, to customise many of the Stewart Christie garments you have chosen for your much loved outdoor pursuits. If we were to create an outfit for yourself, for stand up, what would fabric or style would you chose?
A That’s a great question. I suspect that many people watching stand-up don’t think too much about ‘styling’ Yet if you look at the successful stand-ups, they all have a defined style. I’m not just talking about the wonderful Kathryn Ryan here...Jason Manford (check shirts) Michael McIntyre (dark suits purple shirts) Jimmy Carr (Dark suits, white shirt). John Bishop will probably have a waistcoat on...Even Bill Bailey has a stage ‘look. I’ve often wondered about seeking help in this respect but my main consideration is always the material (comedic, not tailoring) but I think it’d be down to the stylist to pick something….it’s what they are experts in.

Q It seems you were very much ‘the man about town’ however it seems, today, you much more of a 'country gent'. Was this transition a natural progression and has it always been a passion of yours?
A They run very much and in hand. But I wouldn’t turn up at a gig in country tweeds.
We have heard you are to be one of the Fringe acts performing the Stand Comedy Club for this years EdFringe. It all sounds very exciting, who else will be taking the stage there this year? Do you have a personal favourite whom you are looking forward to seeing?
A Yes I’ll be at Stand One almost every night during August and am really looking forward to performing at another Fringe. Daniel Kitson, Paul Sinha, Silky, Nick Revell and many others will be there and I’m a Fern Brady fan too and delighted that she’ll be there too.

Q Out of your three children, have any decided to take up comedy? or join you in your country pursuits?
A The kids have all got great senses of humour…which they largely inherited from their mum! But they all have their (very different) careers. Maybe they are getting to that age where they might consider a career switch? I’ve never really pushed them It has to be the individuals decision to get on stage….I couldn’t imagine anything worse than watching an offspring have a bad gig! Not only do they join me in outdoor pursuits, but they are all better shots than me!

Q Being Glasgow based, what are your favourite places in Edinburgh to relax and socialise?
A Fringe time is pretty much spent entirely in Edinburgh. The Contini’s have been great to us over the year, finding tables on busy nights. A family favourite was Chez Jules where the fries are unbeatable and the bill never hurt dad’s wallet too much. There’s an annual get-together with some old friends at Outsider too, but for a late night sway, I’m never too far from the Gilded Balloon’s Loft Bar.

Q And finally, (as you are a comedian, we’ll let you have two) What are your favourite Scottish words?
A Jings that’s a toughie. (See what I did there?)
I found my way into Stewart Christie about ten years ago. As a skier, I knew how good Schoffel was as a brand, so I reckoned their tweeds would be equally good and I searched online for stockists and up popped Stewart Christie. The staff will know how often I pop in.
Sometimes for a browse. Sometimes for the 'full monty’ . Or sometimes for a tie or a pair of garter flashes, but the service is always the same.
If you had a Nespresso machine I’d never leave.

— Fred Macaulay

Stewart Christie & Co. Tales of Tailoring

By Stewart Christie 27 Jul, 2017
Jack Lowden, one of Scotland's greatest contemporary talents who has recently starred in the closing film of the Edinburgh Film Festival, England is Mine, as well as Christopher Nolan's epic blockbuster, Dunkirk, spent the afternoon with us at Stewart Christie talking all things Morrissey, theatre, Nolan and Spitfires. From Essex to Oxton to London, Jack has embraced his profession both on stage and screen in a massive variety of roles. Read on for a little insider of his experience pursuing a rather exciting career. 
By Stewart Christie 26 Jun, 2017
It was a complete pleasure to meet and dress the eminent actor, author and director Mr Richard E. Grant. Daring to be different and breaking away from the black tie, he cut a dash across the red carpet in our stone prince of wales check three piece in the light summer weight tweed. At the Edinburgh International Film Festival opening party. And of course, we asked him a few quick questions and cordially invited him to our prestigious Stewart Christie & Co Gentleman's Club.
By Stewart Christie 08 Jun, 2017
All garments and tailoring by Stewart Christie & Co in collaboration with Edinburgh based bridal designer, Rowanjoy.

For any special events, weddings, or the need for specialised tailoring, head to Stewart Christie for the best traditional service and expert consultation email info@stewartchristie.com

Photography: Laura Meek, http://laurameek.tumblr.com  
Models: Abigail Gliksten and Tabitha Stevens
Gowns: Rowanjoy, http://rowanjoy.co.uk  
MUAH: Mairi Gordon, http://mairigordon
Millinery: http://www.sallyannprovan.co.uk
Styling: Vixy Rae
Flowers: Kirsty Downie


By Stewart Christie 07 Jun, 2017
Francois and Nella, artists from France, friends of Stewart Christie and lovers of all things Scottish, had the dream to venture over to Skye for a timeless wedding at Dunvegan Castle. Dressed in fine tweed and tartan, of course.

From the finely crafted wedding ensembles, including a Victorian inspired bespoke gown to the immaculate and well preserved interior of the castle, the day easily alluded to what could have been experienced a few hundred years back for guests at a Lord and Lady's special day. Not to mention, the weather was particularly mild, unexpected, but happily welcomed by all, which led to a most exquisite sunset to polish off such a classic affair.

Nella wore a hand made Stewart Christie 'Inverleith' Cape, made from a beautiful soft lovat green herringbone tweed from the Scottish Borders. The Kilt Jacket and Waistcoat were tailored for Francois in a matching tweed to compliment his beautiful bride. He was proudly adorned in his Ancient Clan Farquharson Kilt and sash. The outfit was completed with a hand crafted sporan by McRostie in a chestnut bridal leather. We were proud there were a number of other guests dressed head to toe in our finely tailored tweed and tartan garments.

Following the wedding day, Francois and Nella strapped on their hiking boots along with their wedding outfits for a walk through the wooded Fairy Glen, just around the corner from Uig, for a romantic and equally magical morning, surrounded by inspiring nature to further embrace the beauty of Skye over their fairy tale wedding weekend.


By Stewart Christie 16 May, 2017

Ian was brought up in Fife, but finally settled in Edinburgh, with his wife and two sons. Before becoming a full-time novelist, he had a rather wide variety of character building jobs, such as a grape picker, taxman, alcohol researcher, hi-fi journalist, college secretary and punk musician-to name but a few. Now his immense passion and knowledge for music and writing go hand in hand. We had the great pleasure of Ian's company in the Oxford Bar for a quick pint and a catch up, after measuring him up in the store for his first Stewart Christie bespoke three-piece, in a soft grey lambswool tweed to be completed for the Edinburgh International Book Festival, where he will present various events in true Scottish style.


Name? Ian Rankin

Profession? Novelist

Do you usually complete your work and then get it published or have you got some novels that you’ve secretly shelved that you may finally release at a later date?

I've only got one unpublished novel - my very first. Unlikely ever to see the light of day. It was a not very funny comedy set in a Highland hotel. There is one novel, Westwind, which was published, but I was unhappy with. I've never allowed it to be reissued. 

Very interested to know what you are currently working on that we may look forward to?
This is a sabbatical year. I am tinkering and pottering, but not doing a novel. A few short stories, meetings about film and TV. Travelling to festivals far and wide to promote Inspector Rebus' 30th anniversary.

It’s incredible that Rebus has been translated into 22 different languages, have you ever read them in other languages? We understand you resided in France for a while. It must be quite a strange feeling to see them in French, not that you would read it, but is there anything that would make you read any of your novels again once you've written them?

Translated into 35 languages - I need to update the information available online! I lived in France for six years but it wasn't translated into French until after I'd moved back to the UK, which was a bit annoying. I only ever reread my novels when asked by my publisher to provide the introduction to some new edition. 

Where do you find your inspiration in Edinburgh for such crime stories? Do you have a few "favourite haunts" you like to go to and write, or are you one of those writers who is constantly inspired throughout the day, like Alexander McCall Smith, who is forever writing?

I write seldom. I'm certainly no McCall Smith. The man is a machine. I hang out in pubs, especially the Oxford Bar. I eavesdrop on conversations. I go for drinks with retired cops. I am also a news junkie, and often get ideas from newspaper reports and such like.

We know you have a great passion for music. In a recent interview with Tim Burgess at the book festival, we experienced your immense knowledge of artists and albums, it was an interesting talk. Would you host or partake in more of them this year?

Like most crime writers, I am a frustrated rock star. Putting so much music in my books has led me to form friendships with a host of musicians, which is a lovely bonus. I will be interviewing at least one musician at this year's festival - but it's under wraps at the moment.



By Stewart Christie 20 Apr, 2017

We spent the day with Dominic Le Moignan, a London based Actor and Creative Director up Arthur's Seat to test out the performance of his bespoke three-piece in a rifle green barathea.


By Stewart Christie 13 Apr, 2017

Scottish comedian and formally BBC Radio Scotland presenter, of 18 years', Fred MacAulay is a long standing and valued Stewart Christie customer. We spent the afternoon asking him a few questions about the comedy circuit and his lesser known passion for outdoor pursuits.

By Stewart Christie 13 Mar, 2017
Edinburgh model and Britain's Next Top Model contestant Simone Murphy, wishing to embrace her Scottish heritage and to celebrate her family tartan in a modern way, visited the Stewart Christie & Co. team at our Edinburgh workshop to be fitted with our first ever pair of Tartan Trews for ladies.
By Stewart Christie 28 Feb, 2017
We talk tweed, tailoring, tartan and music with the legendary Scottish, BBC Broadcaster, Journalist, Author, Musician, punk-at-heart and valued Stewart Christie & Co customer — Vic Galloway
By Stewart Christie 02 Feb, 2017
Parker Fitzgerald is a Photographer and owner at Ransom Limited. Parker recently married his now wife Melissa, in the US, wearing a bespoke Stewart Christie & Co. suit, commissioned from a distance, for his wedding
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