"Plaid du Québec" — not just for the lumberjack bros.
We were today years old when we found out that regions outside of Scotland can bear their own official tartan. The Gaspésie region already has its own, a tasteful blend of blue, pink, black, white and yellow. But the province of Quebec has yet to have one.
Quebec Women's Institute member Linda Janes sought to change that, launching a petition to give the "Plaid du Québec" pattern official recognition in the province. According to MNA Claire IsaBelle, the petition garnered over 1,000 signatures both online and in print.
Together with IsaBelle, Janes hopes to give Quebec a tartan of its own.
The petition, which was presented to the National Assembly on February 17, pointed out that Quebec has deep Scottish roots. Scottish settlers began coming to Canada as early as 1622 and, according to IsaBelle, tens of thousands of Quebecers have Scottish ancestry. Quebec is also the only province to not have its own official tartan, so at this point, it's perhaps a bit strange that it doesn't have one — especially since Quebec has designated April 6 as Tartan Day.
As it turns out, Quebec has had an unofficial tartan for decades. "Plaid du Québec" is a tartan pattern recognized by the Scottish Register of Tartans. It was designed in 1965 by a company called Rotex Limited to include all the colours of the shield on the Quebec coat of arms.
The tartan consists of a deep blue, red and green, with gold and white stitching. The blue represents the background of the top field of the provincial shield, where there are three gold fleurs de lys, representing, according to the Ministry of Justice, the population's majority French lineage. The red in the tartan represents the background of the middle field, where a golden lion stands guard as a reminder of the province's connection to Great Britain.
The forest green in the pattern represents the green maple leaves in the bottom field of the crest, which symbolizes Canada. The gold stitching represents the gold details throughout the crest, and the white stitching represents the banner at the bottom of the coat of arms with Quebec's motto: "Je me souviens."
The National Assembly's Committee on Culture and Education will consider Janes' petition on March 17.