Product Focus: Scotland Forever! Pocket Square

Scotland Forever! is an 1881 oil painting by Lady Butler (also known as Elizabeth Thompson), an artist that specialised in painting battle and military scenes. It portrays the charge of the Royal Scots Greys at the battle of Waterloo. It is named after the battle cry of the soldiers, who were shouting "Now, my boys, Scotland forever!” as they attacked the enemy. More than a quarter of them died during the battle, and another quarter were left wounded.

 

Scotland Forever! over time became an iconic representation of heroism and valour, and there have been many reproductions of the work over time. Both Tsar Nicholas II and Kaiser Wilhelm II were given copies, and during the First World War, the work was used by both the Germans and the British for propaganda purposes, with Germans changing the Scots Greys into the Prussian cavalry.

Founder Insight

"A spectacular work of art that has unsurprisingly become an instant best seller for us. Since we launched we’ve always found that a military theme has been hugely successful for us and incredibly popular with our community. Scenes like ’The Death of Major Peirson’ and ‘Battle of Trafalgar’ have been with us since Day 1 and still sell well globally, while our pocket squares to commemorate both Nelson and Wellington have been particularly well received additions to the collection.

While researching these areas, we inevitably spent a lot of time looking at the Battle of Waterloo, a subject that is especially prevalent in British art history, and this led us to the painting in question. The combination of the drama and excitement of the scene itself as well as the beautiful colour blend allows for the perfect pocket square, allowing a variety of fold options with the added impact of when you pull it out of the pocket. The border itself was designed with the original painting in mind, matching the colour scheme while delivering a slightly more modern frame design compared to some of our more traditional squares. This means you can also deliver a striking fold when showing the points from the pocket."

Elliott Rampley, Co-founder.

The Composition

This painting is one of the most famous images of the Battle of Waterloo. It was exhibited at the Egyptian Hall in Piccadilly the same year it was painted, and donated a few years later to Leeds Art Gallery where it can still be found. The painting is 101.6cm x 194.3cm and was completed in 1881.

Scotland Forever!

The Artist: Elizabeth Thompson

Elizabeth Thompson, or Lady Butler, (1846-1933) was a well-known artist who produced many paintings portraying battles and military scenes. Unlike many other artists, she commented in 1922 that she did not use paint for the glory of war, but to portray its pathos and heroism.

Some of her most notable paintings such as The 28th Regiment at Quatre Bras, or Scotland Forever! portray battles from the Waterloo campaign, and mainly show British soldiers, exhausted, fighting an enemy who is almost never represented in the scene. Even though her most famous work show battles and soldiers, she never actually observed a battle herself, but would observe her husband's regiment during training, while often standing in front of the charging horses to accurately capture their movement. She also had copies of the soldiers uniforms made in order to be able to paint them with as much detail as possible.

What Makes Our Pocket Squares Special?

1. We believe that 40cm is the minimum size for a high quality pocket square. Any smaller and it will slide down inside your pocket with any movement of your jacket, while it limits the number of folds you can achieve as there is not enough volume to hold it in place. It goes without saying we would never advocate any form of pocket square holder. All our pocket squares are either 42cm x 42cm or 40cm x 40cm.

2. We use the finest mulberry silk with our silk and wool/silk pocket squares. The quality of the fabric can be seen in the texture and the level of detail and vibrancy of the finished product. All our pocket squares are printed in Macclesfield, England, an area renowned for silk printing for the past 200 years.

3. We take the utmost care in printing our pocket squares, which results in truly remarkable levels of detail. Faces, objects and colours are sharp and well defined to give a truly stunning finish. We also take exceptional care with the colour bleed, so the print is almost as crisp on the back as it is on the front, allowing for an unlimited number of folds.

4. The art of hand rolling pocket squares is a unique craft and truly makes each piece individual and unique. We feel that the precision and care taken by our skilled artisans gives each square its own unique character, finish and feel. To create the finest rolled hems, the edge of the silk must be softy turned over with a handheld needle and then small stitches are inserted approximately one half to one centimetre apart around the edge, creating a supple yet prominent border.

Complete the look

Below are some tie selections that pair beautifully with this pocket square.