Barack Obama has his Scottish tartan officially registered

Barack Obama Tartan
The Barack Obama tartan. Photo: Brian Halley

An Obama tartan commissioned for the former United States president’s recent visit to Edinburgh has been officially registered.

A kilt and pair of trousers made using the tartan were presented to Barack Obama during a charity fundraising dinner which he attended in May.

His own tartan has navy blue to represent the flag of Hawaii, where the first African-American president was born. The flag of Kenya, where his father was born is represented with green on the design, while sky-blue and white are taken from the flag of Chicago, where Mr Obama lives and works.

Brian Halley, a Glasgow based tartan designer at Slanj Kilts, was asked to design the special tartan, but sworn to secrecy over the project.

“When I received the email asking me if I could make a tartan quickly, and who it was for, I felt very excited and honoured.

“I don’t think that there is a more famous man, and I think he has the second most Twitter followers in the world, so it was very exciting.

“I was sworn to secrecy at the time, it was all very hush-hush.

“Apparently he loves the tartan and said he would wear the trousers rather than the kilt as he thinks his legs are too thin. I don’t think his legs are too thin, anyone can wear a kilt.”

– Brian Halley, tartan designer at Slanj Kilts

Now that Mr Obama has officially registered the tartan under his name, he has the rights to it.

The charity fundraising dinner where the former President was presented with his tartan collected £670,000 for charities taking part in the Kiltwalk campaign, including the Maggie’s Centres and Glasgow’s Beatson Clinic.

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