Tartan design marks pandas' arrival
Published 24/01/2012 | 12:33
A special tartan commissioned to mark the arrival of two pandas in the UK has been unveiled at the zoo where they live.
Tian Tian and Yang Guang jetted into Edinburgh on a specially-chartered flight from China on December 4 last year.
Edinburgh Zoo commissioned the tartan from local company Kinloch Anderson to mark the bears' arrival.
The design features black, white and a little grey to reflect the colour of the pandas' fur, green for bamboo and three red lines to represent China. It was unveiled at the zoo to tie in with Burns Night and Chinese New Year.
Deirdre Kinloch Anderson, senior director of Kinloch Anderson, said: "Tartan is one of Scotland's greatest icons. Careful attention was given to create a tartan with a meaningful background, with relevance both to the zoo and also to China - and importantly a tartan that people find attractive.
"We hope that this tartan will fly the flag for Scotland and that tartan merchandise will leave the zoo gift shop for homes not only in Scotland but all over the world."
She said the three red lines are at the heart of the design to indicate that the pandas are in the hearts and minds of the Scottish and Chinese people, while three is China's lucky number.
The tartan has been approved by the Scottish Registrar of Tartans and merchandise featuring the design will be available at the zoo gift shop and online from early April.
Hugh Roberts, chief executive of Edinburgh Zoo, said: "We're delighted with the panda tartan designed for us by Kinloch Anderson.
"This significant and highly exciting project symbolically demonstrates the coming together of Scotland and China's heritage and culture - making it the perfect way to commemorate the gift of two giant pandas that China bestowed upon Scotland."