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Article: KU in Watercolor: A Special Announcement

1912 Jayhawk Die Cut Sticker

KU in Watercolor: A Special Announcement

We are SO  excited to announce that we are *officially* licensed by The University of Kansas to carry KU goodies full of Rock Chalks and Jayhawks in their full crimson and blue glory!

For those of you who don’t bleed crimson and blue, we are very sorry to hear it, but we know you’ll still want to keep reading for a little history lesson of our favorite university over here at The Singing Little Bird.


Jayhawk sticker on water bottle


What Is a Jayhawk?

Some may think it’s funny that KU’s mascot is a fictional bird, but we sure do love our Jayhawks! While the Jayhawk itself is technically a mythical creature, the word was coined around 1848 and was inspired by two real birds–the blue jay, a noisy, quarrelsome thing known to rob other nests, and the sparrow hawk, a stealthy hunter. The message here? Don’t mess with us. The term "Jayhawk" was originally used to describe Free State supporters during the "Bleeding Kansas" period in the 1850s.



We Bleed Crimson and Blue

Red and blue? Yes we do!! Crimson and blue were adopted as the official colors of KU in 1896. The short and sweet reason? It was to recognize a few donors from Harvard and Yale. Originally, these colors were not so popular among the KU folks, but we think the colors are quite striking and so very fun to wear to represent our school.

The Chant of Jayhawk Nation: Rock Chalk Jayhawk

KU’s campus is known for its limestone buildings and the limestone formation on Mount Oread. Way back when in 1886, a professor of chemistry needed a cheer for his science club. He submitted the chant, “Rah Rah Jayhawk, KU,” but an English professor suggested that “Rah Rah” be changed to “Rock Chalk” because it rhymes with “Jayhawk” and is symbolic of the limestone on campus. The words “Rock Chalk” are now used to sign off emails by Kansas folks, to end speeches, and to connect with someone when you see them wearing a KU shirt on the other side of the country. 




Now that you’re up to speed on some of KU’s traditions, we want to share our favorite KU memories and traditions!

Liesel Anne (Founder, Artist, Designer)

As a fourth generation Jayhawk, Liesel loves the sense of tradition at KU. Her favorites are the Waving the Wheat, listening to the steam whistle blow all through town, and hearing the Campanile ring every hour. Being a Jayhawk brings such an incredible sense of community that rivals many other groups and organizations. She loves that Lawrence rallies around the University and that you can find many other Jayhawks around the world to connect with. Fun fact: Liesel lived in the same ROOM as her grandmother did in college! Talk about a family legacy.

Macy Burkett (Marketing & Business Relations)

Macy grew up loving the Jayhawks. Her dad went to law school at KU and has shared the school’s fun traditions with her ever since she was a little girl. Despite Macy graduating with her undergraduate degrees from K-State (her dad was not happy about that - and we will try to forgive her ourselves ;) ), she returned to KU for her master’s degree and is currently pursuing her PhD there as well. Macy’s favorite KU memory is attending her first KU basketball game with her dad and sister in 2005. After that, she was hooked! 

Grace Fike (Order Fulfillment & Graphic Design Specialist)

Grace is the Singing Little Bird’s resident K-State Wildcat. (eeeeek! Again - we have grace and forgiveness in our hearts ;) ) She still has some great Jayhawk and KU memories, though! Grace has fond memories of taking her engagement photos at Potter’s Pond and watching fireworks on the Campanile hill. Her kids love the Jayhawk statue in front of the Kansas Union and have been known to photobomb lots of other people’s photos in front of the statue. :) 

Have we convinced you to Hail to Old KU yet? We hope so. And we hope you enjoy our new KU goodies. Check out what we have now up on our shop below and there are many more to come! 

1 comment

I just got a thank you note from my cousin’s daughter on your darling paper! I started shopping and saw you are in Lawrence! What a small world and can wait to fill my basket and support your lovely business!

Erin U 95 G 2000

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