As legend has it, during Alexander III reign from 1249 to 1286 there was an army of Vikings from Norway under the leadership of King Haakon, who were intending on conquering a party of sleeping Scottish Warriors and Highlanders on the coast of Largs in Ayrshire.
In order to move more quietly and get nearer to the Scotsmen, the Vikings removed their footwear and unfortunately, for one of King Haakon’s men, he stood on a prickly purple plant and yelled in pain, awaking and alerting The Scottish Warriors and The Highlanders of the advancing Vikings. Leaping to their feet, the Clansmen charged into battle and after the ferocious Highland Charge, their Norse foe was defeated with a terrible slaughter.
Needless to say, it was the Scots who had won on that day and from that moment, the thistle became known as The Guardian Thistle and was adopted as The Symbol of Scotland.
When I first started collecting patches, it was the 2X3 wearables that were my favorite. They are small & functional...perfect for hats, jackets, bags, etc.