A new flag design that fits like an old pair of jeans

The Daily Telegraph, Tuesday, 28 January 1997, p.5.

Ausflag unveiled a new design for the national emblem yesterday... and it was promptly turned on its side and hijacked by a major jeans manufacturer. Just Jeans reckons the proposed flag is a dead ringer for its own emblem, once rotated.

The Ausflag design – among several flags it floated yesterday to inspire debate - dispenses with the Union Jack but keeps the traditional red, white and blue colours. It features a white Southern Cross on a blue square, with thick red bars on left and right.

Just Jeans′ logo has the words "Just Jeans" in white on a blue square, with thick red bars top and bottom. "Imagine it – every time someone looks at the new Australian flag, they′ll think of Just Jeans and vice versa," said Carolyn Johnson, from Just Jeans′ advertising agency, Clemengers.

Ausflag co-chairman Nick Greiner said the design was the result of a survey conducted by AGB-McNair. It found that of those voters who wanted a new flag, most favoured retaining the "quintessentially Australian" Southern Cross and traditional colours. The flag was unveiled at Sydney′s Town Hall and it and other designs were sent out on the Worldwide Web by Ausflag, the bi-partisan organisation whose motto is "our own flag by the 2000 Olympics".

While it lacks strong Aboriginal influence, Ausflag co-chairman Nicholas Whitlam said the Southern Cross could be seen as a link to indigenous culture. The AGB-McNair poll found 66 per cent of voters would support the use of elements of the Aboriginal flag but 75 per opposed the Aboriginal flag replacing the current national flag.