14 Aug 2012

Northern Isles (United Kingdom)

Sometime ago, me and guys at Flags Forum were discussing about a flag for Northern Isles (the traditional name of Orkney and Shetland counties union). In 2014, there'll be a referendum for Scotland independence, but for Shetland and Orkney islanders, it's indifferent be ruled from London or Edinburgh. So, depending if they will leave Union together with Scotland or stay in it, they could need a flag.

Firstly, let's see Orkney and Shetland flags:

Orkney (Since 2007)Orkney (Previous flag)Shetland

My first design was a mix of both counties' flags, this way:

After that, Sammy came with a different way of mix them, therefore I replied with this, with a frontier between Shetland and Orkney flags:

It's OK for me, but some forum members said it had too many colors, so discussion came to other destination: try to emulate Scottish flag, but distinguishing it for show islands unique Nordic identity. Sammy came with three designs, being this two my favorite of them:
with Pictish crosswith shield knot
The two flag above are Sammy's designs.

Meinsauer, another forum member, came with a interesting model using a sun cross:
The flag above is Meinsauer's design.

It's OK, but it's still to similar to Scottish flag. So I used a strategy used before by Nova Scotia: invert blue and white. So I came with them (red is a color well-associated with Nordic countries, for me):

I desisted of using sun cross, because it's, unfortunately, associated with Nazi groups. Therefore, I made a vast search to symbols that represent Nordic heritage in Shetland and Orkney, so I found this Viking ship image in a commemorative badge (400 years of Shetland devolution to Scotland). It resulted in this:

I think this is very appropriated, because it harmonizes Scottish and Nordic heritages, and does anyone dislike cool ships? I'd like, also, to show a flag that Meinsauer did inspired in aforementioned flag.

Meinsauer, another forum member, came with a interesting model using a sun cross:
The flag above is Meinsauer's design.

This is it! Sorry if this post is a bit long.

I'd like to know your opinion about this post, any of the flags in this, or my blog in general. Please, comment.
NOTE: All these flag, except where mentioned differently, are mine. To read a interesting post about this same question, visit Sammy's blog. To see complete discusson, visit Flags Forum.


  1. I think the first two are the most sophisticated. And very good looking. Can't decide between the concentric crosses or the offset corners. I think I vote for #1 since it is Scandinavian but has the more contemporary offset look. Getting into the Scottish cross and the little icons is a bit too fiddley.

    1. I like very much the first two, too, principally the second. But I turned very satisfied when I had the insight to first one. I'm amazed with the effect caused by the contrast of blue and white.

  2. A very interesting post, I have said before and I'l say it again my personal favourite is the blue St Andrew's cross with the Viking ship.


Every comment is greatly welcome!