The design of the signature scarf was inspired by the floor tiles laid along the walkways of the Main Building. The tiles are original to the Main Building, the oldest building on the Main Campus, which was completed in 1912.
The terminology for this particular type of tile is “Unglazed Encaustic ( or Inlaid)”. They are ceramic tiles in which the pattern or figure on the surface is made of different colours of clay. The pattern appears inlaid into the body of the tile so that the design remains as the tile is worn down.
Encaustic or inlaid tiles enjoyed two periods of great popularity. The first came in the 13th century until Henry the Eighth’s reformation in the 16th century. The second was the early 19th century and lasted until the 1920s. During both periods, the tiles were made across western Europe, though the centre of production was in England.
These surviving encaustic tiles in the Main Building are one of the best examples of the use of such materials in Hong Kong with regard to the design and intactness.