How to get inspiration from other coat of arms by Tomas Bragesjö

Inspiration from Ryssnäs-släktens coat of arms and introduction

In this article I was going to show how one can be inspired by older coat of arms when creating a new one. I start by showing how two burgher coat of arms got inspired by the arms of Ryssnäs-släktens coat of arms and ends up with coat of arms that originated in the County of Cheshire's coat of arms. The coat of arms listed here has also a thematical look in form of wheat sheaf ("garb" in heraldy terms). Remember one can be inspired by the thematical part or main parts of the shield or the crest, but dont use everything like quartering the shield.

All images here was drawed by Eduardo Pazikas.


Ryssnäs-släkten is a farmer's family from Borås that has been documented since the 17th century. It is named after the farm Ryssnäs in Viareds parish and is one of Sweden's largest documented families that regularly publishes family books. Their coat of arms was composed in 1955 by the Finnish heraldry Gunnar Clemens. The coat of arms is based on a family history. The legend tells the family's ancestor, Nils Nilsson, was on a business trip in Russia, a fire occurred in Borås in 1681. He then hurried home by crossing the ice in a sledge, bedded in hay to keep warm. The crest consists of a horse's head of silver between two wings divided in silver and blue and in blue and silver respectively, and symbolizes the Wrangel cavalry regiment since the oldest known members where first farmers (frälsebonde) under house Wrangel and later supporting farmers (rusthållare) for the regiment.

The coat or arms is the model for at least two new coat of arms: Bragesjö and Holm.


My shield has nothing to do with the Ryssnäs-släkten. I am part of Ryssnäs-släkten via distant women's path on my grandmother's side. My coat of arms is based on god Bragi from Norse mythology with cups which symbolizes Bragarfull which together with a wave becomes Bragesjö (Bragi-lake, or as one say in English - the lake of Bragi). There is a small connection to Västergötland in that my grandfather's father Johan Alfred Johansson grew up in Skaraborg county but Borås is in Älvsborgs county. I do not use Ryssnäs-släktens shield straight off as a crest. However, I use parts of the elements from Ryssnäs-släktens family shield as crest and marking of distant kinship. One can be inspired by and used elements found in other shields without saying that you are the sole heir to that shield.

Picture of my primary working place in my appartment


Fredrik Holm's coat of arms as Freemason show that he is a member of Ryssnäs-släkten. The wool scissors show that he lives in Borås. He shows the staff a career choice. Note that the shield is not divided into formal individual fields so it is a new coat of arms and not an alliance coat of arms.

Inspiration from Cheshire

All images here was drawed by Eduardo Pazikas.

The county of Cheshire is a ceremonial county in England. The county main city is Chester. The County's coat of arms consist of three sheaves of gold in a blue field with a sword of gold in the middle. That coat of arms has affected the design if several coat of arms in the county.

House Grosvenor

Perhaps the most well-known coat of arms used in the county of Cheshire is the Grosvenor family, which later became the Duke of Westminister. The Grosvenor family's coat of arms arms came after a dispute over the right to another coat of arms where the Scrope family and the Grosvenor family were found to use completely identical coat of arms which were discovered by chance in 1385 and where Scrope won so Grosvenor was forced to change the coat of arms in 1389. It was also found that the Carminow family also used an identical coat of arms, but that family belonged to another "heraldic nation". The Grosvenor family was then given a shield originally used by the Earls of Chester, with whom they had the same origin and with which they were very closely related. It was then possible that the Earls of Chester's coat of arms shield had changed significantly since that version of the shield. The coat of arms shield has the main motive of the county but with only one sheaf.

Lecester of Tableys

The Grosvenor shield has also found its way into a field in Lecester of Tabley's coat of arms.

Hugh de Kevelioc

Hugh de Kevelioc, Earl of Chester, used a coat of arms where the shield was in blue field sheaves of gold arranged three, two and one. The coat of arms shield is a modification of the county's coat of arms shield but with several sheaves and no sword.

Roger de Lacy

Roger de Lacy, Constable of Chester, used a coat of arms in which the shield is split in blue and red and with three sheaves of gold, one per field and one between the fields. Clear influence of the county's arms shield but all new with the division into a red field.


The Hatton family is from Cheshire and their coat or arm shield have in blue field three sheaves arranged two and one as well as a spar of gold in the middle. It is the County' coat of arms shield but shield without the sword and with a spar of gold instead.


Mainwaring of Newton and Mainwaring of Kermincham are from Cheshire and their coat arms shield are inspired by the county's coat of arms shield with the three sheaves of gold in blue field.

About images here

Eduardo Pazikas drawed the images used on this article according to my directive, I showed the pictures from Internet sites of the images of coat of arms instead of giving him a blazon. I can not confirm that all coat of arms listed here are real and used on the Cheshire part since I found these coat of arms using Google. Eduardo Pazikas drawed the images here in high resolution pdf format, these are only small web images at this article. The images was originally created for use on an article for Svenska Heraldiska Föreningens magazine Vapenbilden. The editors switched and the new editor did not accept the article so I recycle it here translated into English.

Further reading

I have written articles for both Svenska Heraldiska Föreningens magazine Vapenbilden and also for Svenska Heraldiska Föreningens homepage.

I have also written som articles in English for use on this site that is not going to be published else where. Some articles are translations and slight modifications of articles I wrote for Svenska Heraldiska Föreningen.