What Is A Queen’s Tam?

by Dani on November 29, 2010

in Asked and Answered, Traditions


Ever wonder what a “Queen’s Tam” is? If you haven’t, you should, as you’ll be faced with fugly sightings of these things day in and day out from the moment you arrive on the Queen’s campus.

A tam, officially known as a Tam o’ Shanter by no one other than wikipedia, is a Scottish style hat. Simply put, it’s a beret like hat. The Queen’s Tam is a navy blue beret, with a giant red pom pom and the queen’s colours knitted in a checkered pattern around the bottom edge.

Other ideas:


Frosh are given a “Queen’s Tam” during their first week of school. Most people wear Tams during football games, Homecoming, or other Queen’s celebrations, often accompanied by a pair of Queen’s coveralls (a beer cup does nicely as an accessory as well).

BooHoo the Bear, the Queen’s Mascot, often wears a Tam.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessie B November 29, 2010 at 3:37 pm

Some international students who are arriving in Kingston from warmer countries without a warm winter hat will often resort to wearing their Frosh tam until they are able to make the trek to Princess Street to buy a hat!

Ally January 24, 2011 at 5:55 am

The tam pom pom colour depends on the faculty. I wish I knew all of them, but Red is ArtSci, Maroon is Commerce, Gold is Engineering, I THINK White is Nursing, and there are others that are half and half colours etc.

Bonnie C February 13, 2011 at 11:40 am

I think it should be noted that only ARTSCI’s get the tams with the red pom pom and that each faculty has it’s own colour of pom pom on their tams. If not, people might think that the red pom pom version is the only Queen’s tam.

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