Official, Authorized Tartan Day Buttons

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Click on the thumbnails below to open a larger version in a new window. All buttons designed by Jack A. Barker except where specifically noted.

The first Tartan Day Button, which was produced in very limited quantities.

Designer unknown.

The second Tartan Day Button, which was also produced in very limited quantities.

Designer unknown.

The 2000 Tartan Day Button, the first one that was distributed nationally.

Designer: Stuart Hoarn.

The 2001 Tartan Day Button was the first one designed by Jack Barker.
The 2002 buttons was the best-selling Tartan Day Button yet. It was the only one that ever had to be re-ordered from the manufacturer.
Ironically, the follow-up to the 2002 button did not sell as well.
2004 was the biggest button, at 2.75"×3.75" (until the introduction of the "jumbo" button in 2010). Due to the higher cost of postage, this big of a button was not created again until online order fulfillment became the norm.
Based on the success of the 2002 design, we did another square button in 2005.
A red-and-blue design (representing the U.S.) is surrounded by a purple-and-green design (representing Scotland). This one didn't sell very to Canada.
It occurred to me that I hadn't ever done a plain old round button. So I designed a round one!
This one caused a bit of confusion. It was meant to celebrate the tenth anniversary of SR 151. But it's the eleventh button. And there are some groups who have been celebrating Tartan Day since before SR 151, of course. And technically, the Declaration of Arbroath was in 1320, which is waaaaay more than 10 years. Oh well, better luck next time.
This button was only 1.75" in diameter (a bit smaller than the 2007 round button), in an effort to keep the prices down.
The 2010 button was a return to the oval shape, with colors meant to invoke the Rampant Lion, one of the symbols of Scotland. This was the last button to be distributed by hand by the Tartan Day Cooperative.
The button shapes available through online ordering are limited, so it was back to a round design this year, but with the exciting new wrinkle that they could be ordered in regular size (2¼" diameter), mini size (1¼" diameter), or jumbo size (4" diameter).
Like the previous year, the button was designed to accommodate the regular, mini, and jumbo sizes. The new wrinkle is that each size has a slightly different design—the bigger the button, the more faux tartan swatches!
After five years, I decided to try a square button design again. This had mixed success, as some folks tried to order a round button from zazzle, resulting in the design being severely cropped. Some folks just insist on putting a square button in a round hole!
Having learned my lesson with the 2013 button, it was back to round buttons for 2014. This was designed to be a "bullseye" of reversing green-and-purple tartan patterns.
If you look very closely at the tartan pattern in the background of the 2015 button, you'll see that it's not a simulated fabric pattern, it's the letters "TARTANDAY2015" repeated over and over in a tartanlike fashion.
For 2016, I decided to focus on the Declaration of Arbroath rather than just another tartan design. The text in the background features the famous phrase, "It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.—Declaration of Arbroath, 6 April 1320." The background is the official blue of the Scottish Flag (or so I'm led to believe).
It occurred to me this year that I'd been meaning to do a "wraparound" design for a long time (the last one was in 2007), but had never done so. So here it is, "Tartan Day 2017" wrapping around an iconic thistle, with a purple-green-blue tartan design in the background.
I've been wanting to add some historical context to the Tartan Day buttons for a while, so this year I used a photo I took of the Robert the Bruce statue in Bannockburn to use as the centerpiece of the button. The background is a red-blue-black tartan pattern.
It occurred to me this year that we've never had an orange button before, so this one has an orange-and-yellow background, with a thistle icon filled with a green-and-purple tartan pattern.
Due to rising prices, I decided to go with a smaller, 1¼" button this year, in order to keep costs down. For the colors, I went with red, white, and two shades of blue.
I cannot tell a lie, this year's button was a "revisitation" of the design from 2020, with a few design flourishes and a different background to make it stand out. Next year, we'll have something brand new!

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Last updated: February 10, 2021.