The union jack gives testament to our historic ties to England, and the four stars of the Southern Cross represent our place on the planet.
But there are winds of change afoot, and a new flag is being discussed and will be voted on soon.
How do you feel about a flag change?
I have no strong feelings either way. I like the current flag. I like it's historic significance, but I also think it says a lot about our small country that we are discussing a change. Does this mean we're feeling independent enough to assert our growing autonomy?
In thinking about this debate, I keep coming back to the Canadian flag. It is arguably, one of the most recognisable flags in the world and was chosen as the official flag in 1965. Previously, it also emblazoned the majestic Union Jack. In using just red and white and a large Maple leaf, we all know which country this flag belongs to. It's simple, but it stands out. I would hope that New Zealand would adopt similar guides. Simple and bold.
Whatever the reason, the changing of the flag has generated a lot of debate and quite a bit of creativity. Any New Zealander is free to submit ideas for a new flag, and I have been perusing some of them and decided to list a few of my favourites.
1. Design by Martin Caie from Auckland
I like this one a lot, because it is simple, keeps traditional colours and stands out.
It's a little too similar to the flag of the State of Texas.
2. Designed by Martin Hermans from Auckland
4. Designed by Simon Aiken from International
PROS: My husband likes this one - he thinks it's original and quirky. Me, not so much, but I appreciate the design originality. It incorporates the Southern Cross, the red, white and blue, has a nod to Maori tukituki (slightly stretching it there), and is forward thinking in the digital code.
CONS: Not really visually identifiable as kiwi.
5. Designed by Andrew Sims from Auckland
PROS: I really, really like this flag. It would be instantly recognisable. Probably in my top favourites.
There are dozens of flag designs that have been submitted, and you can view them all here. What I think would be a good idea for the government to do once the final designs are chosen for the vote, is to make the flags up and fly them from a mast, as that would give us a better idea of how it would look at official occasions. What do you think?
Which one do you like?