At a small workplace in Blackburn, Victoria, the fingers of Evangelia Ertϋrk continue, as they have done for 50 years, to craft Colours for the ADF.

This year, the Colour Evangelia is working on is the Queen’s Colour for the Royal Australian Air Force, to be presented on the centenary of the foundation of the RAAF.

Employed by Spear of Fame, a company of which she is also a Director, Evangelia is continuing centuries of hand-making of Colours and related heraldry items.

One of the highlights of her career was embroidering the Royal Australian Navy Queen’s Colour, the only RAN Colour to be presented by the reigning monarch.

Another was the creation of the Australian Army Centenary Banner, the first full 3D embroidered banner in the world, where every embroidery silk goes right through the underlying felt padding.

In June, the Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld, presented Evangelia, via video conference, with a plaque commemorating half a century of quality work for the ADF. 

Evangelia’s work is second to none and we are very proud to have her work feature so prominently in our centenary year.

Air Marshal Hupfeld said the making of the Queen’s Colour for the Air Force’s centenary could not be in better hands.

“Evangelia’s work is second to none and we are very proud to have her work feature so prominently in our centenary year,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said.

The Sovereign’s Colours are a development of the banners carried by nobility in medieval times, as are all Standards, Colours and Guidons used by the world’s armed forces today. 

The banners carried in medieval times were, in themselves, an advance on the ensigns and standards used by the Roman Legions, Greeks and Egyptians to name a few. 

The RAAF was the first Commonwealth Air Force to have Colours and Standards awarded. 

King George VI agreed in principle to a King’s Colour for the Air Force and approved the design in 1950.

The Queen approved a new design for the Queen’s Colour for the RAAF in 1982 and presented that Colour on March 5, 1986, at RAAF Base Richmond.

Established in 1993, Spear of Fame took over work previously performed by the Commonwealth Government Clothing Factory and Evangelia continued her career, begun in 1970, at the Clothing Factory.

In recognition of her outstanding work and dedication, Evangelia was awarded the Order of Australia in 2003.

The new Queen’s Colour for the RAAF will be presented at a Colour Parade in the national capital on March 31, 2021. 

Planning is under way for the commemoration of the Royal Australian Air Force’s formation in March 1921 and further information is at www.airforce.gov.au/100