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Question? Do you have a set Badge placement on Uniform?

twitchy

Veteran (100+ posts)
#1
Does anyone have or know if there is a set place for Badges on the uniform? I like the was scouts are quite set in the placing for these and would like to start something similar at our unit. I have been asked by many parents about this and I'm not sure of the official line. I know that GG has a mix n match approach to uniform so didn't think it was a major issue. But we look such a mess next to the scouts at parades, I was going to suggest something as a unit and bring up with other units at district later.
Any suggestions or photos/guides to parents welcome!
Cheers
 

badgemad4

Veteran (100+ posts)
#2
Guiding has no set placement for badges other than for the promise badge (I believe in the manual there is a description about that, if I remember I'll pop it up here later).

Some units have a suggested placement that they give out but it cannot be enforced.

As such the only set rule is that only official badges and non "fun" badges should be on uniform. This includes ones from places they have been on trips and residentials.

Why not send your feedback to CHQ?
 

fenris

fenris
GuiderPlus
#4
No, we are not to suggest layouts. Each girl is meant to choose for herself whether/where to display her badges. This can be on a uniform garment, on a camp blanket, in a keepsake box, in a picture frame or wherever she wishes. It is intended to encourage the individual to make decisions for herself, and express her own taste.

Hence, it always saddens me when I see unit sending out 'suggested layouts'.
 

Pixielation

Brown Owl (x2)
#5
It's interesting that you say that it is intentional to make the girl make the decision and keep suggestions out of it - where does that come from? Since I become a leader I've looked in a variety of places to see if there was any guidance, and found only the guidelines for promise and union flag. The brownie adventure book states that they can put them wherever they like, and that is what we say to them too - but we still point out some logical places to put them by getting other girls to show how they've done it.

Knowing that the first adventure badge is only one part of a three year badge - and as such is designed to take up a lot of space is another pointer that we share when parents ask where badges should be sewn. And as we have no gilets in our unit at all (at the moment) all badges are sewn onto brownie hoodies by those who choose to sew them. (We have no skorts either, but I always thought that was a very odd garment to be sewing badges onto!)

So I do have a sketch of a brownie hoodie (and a gilet) with badges on them as a suggestion for parents.

It's also a bit confusing that the brownie adventure book tells the girls that most Brownies wear their promise badge on the right side, where the official guidelines are left side.
 

caroline68

Regular (50+ posts)
#6
The Promise badge placing is hugely confusing! The website (Old version and new!) states: 'Promise badges - wear on the left-hand side where they are closest to the heart. Girls should be given a metal pin Promise badge on making her Promise not a woven trefoil badge.' (there is an addition for Brownies, that they may also wear it on their sash!)
Whereas our Leaders' wear has a reinforced bit for our badge tabs on the right and almost every photo online and in the Guiding magazine shows girls of all sections wearing their promise badge on the right.
I agree with Twitchy that the Scouts look smarter with a set badge placement. Three years ago before the new Guide uniform came out I heard my son's cub leader say how smart they had been at Remembrance Sunday and that the Guides hadn't even turned up in uniform! They were in uniform, but the old one was so varied and bland it was easy to miss. I did put the cub leader right!
I suggest to my Rainbow parents that badges are sewn on the polo shirt, starting along the bottom hem and working upwards. When I tell them they can go anywhere, they give me such an odd look, or ask so many questions it is much easier to give them a suggestion!
Surely the point of a 'uniform' is that every section should look the same and have some 'uniformity'?
 

Tawnyowl51

Veteran (100+ posts)
#7
I simply suggest they start at the top of whatever the badges are going to be sewn onto and work down. But increasingly I don't even see any sewn on at all, on any item of uniform. I do wonder what drawers they get pushed to back of
 

MummyOwl

Brownie Leader
#8
I'm afraid that we ignore the advice from HQ and we have a set place for badges to go (to a point). The badges they get when they make their Promise (inc Promise badge) go on the top left side of their gilet; "special badges" (e.g. Jubilee, Queen's birthday, World Thinking Day) go on the right front pocket; everything else goes on the back.
This way, the front of their gilets look smart and "uniform" but the back is a carnival of colour and fun!
Most people (from experience) like to have some order to the badges...
We also do pint out that if the girls have made the effort to earn the badge, and we have made the effort to buy them and award them, they should be sewn on and celebrated. Most get sewn on by the following meeting!
 

fenris

fenris
GuiderPlus
#9
I'm afraid that we ignore the advice from HQ and we have a set place for badges to go (to a point). The badges they get when they make their Promise (inc Promise badge) go on the top left side of their gilet; "special badges" (e.g. Jubilee, Queen's birthday, World Thinking Day) go on the right front pocket; everything else goes on the back.
This way, the front of their gilets look smart and "uniform" but the back is a carnival of colour and fun!
Most people (from experience) like to have some order to the badges...
We also do pint out that if the girls have made the effort to earn the badge, and we have made the effort to buy them and award them, they should be sewn on and celebrated. Most get sewn on by the following meeting!
Afraid I find it really disappointing that you are not willing to be girl-led, and are instead imposing adult's wishes. Does smart matter so much that they are matching, or would it not be more valuable to encourage the girls to make decisions for themselves, in areas where there is no 'wrong' answer, to help them become accustomed to thinking for themselves and not just following the herd/conforming without thinking? From small decisions like this, we can encourage them to think independently over bigger things as they move through Guiding.
 

ker-stee

SGP Enthusiast
GuiderPlus
#10
We have a number of girls who don't sew their badges onto their uniform because they know that it will have to be passed on or sold once they leave Brownies so they don't want to be putting holes in it. We made some special memory boxes at Brownies one week and I know a couple of girls keep their badges in there.

I'd feel terrible if I forced someone to sew badges onto someone when they really didn't want to.

I find that most girls follow each other anyway, we're not telling them where to put things, the parents and girls are pretty much just looking at each others uniforms and doing it like that.
 

MummyOwl

Brownie Leader
#11
I'm sorry you feel that way, Fenris & Kerstee. We HAVE asked the girls what they want - and they are very happy with the ways things are. Each to their own. Why don't we agree to disagree?
 
#12
I have a suggested layout that I send to parents IF they and their daughter ask.

My pack like displaying their badges on their hoodies (much to non -sewing parents chagrin) so I always say to the parent that there is no set way, the idea is the girl decides, Flossie bounces up and says she wants them like the other girls...
 

fenris

fenris
GuiderPlus
#13
I'm sorry you feel that way, Fenris & Kerstee. We HAVE asked the girls what they want - and they are very happy with the ways things are. Each to their own. Why don't we agree to disagree?
Because it runs against Guiding's policy in this area. Guiding have made it clear that the individual is to choose not the unit, therefore that is the policy we should be following and enforcing, whether it fits with our personal preferences or not.
 

Burghilly

Veteran (100+ posts)
#14
But as Guiders are we not also here to 'guide' or make gentle suggestions? If for some reason a Guide took it into her head to sew her badges in an inappropriate position or design on her uniform would you leave her to it,saying it's her individual choice?

Pixielation makes a good point when she mentioned the Brownie Adventure badge that comes in 3 pieces and does take up a lot of room. It looks really good when all three pieces are sewn to form the segments of a circle and I think it's worth pointing this out to parents so they don't have to re-arrange badges they've sewn on.

I also agree with MummyOwl. If you've gone to the effort of earning the badge it's worth displaying. If you 're likely to re-sell your uniform and don't want to sew badges on then I think the idea of having them in a picture frame is lovely.

Camp blankets can look really good too, but in reality only get dragged out a couple of times a year and I think of them more as something nice to look back on when you've left Guiding.

Keeping badges in a tin? Don't see the point - display them (somehow!) loud and proud!
 
#15
We always have parents asking where the badges should be placed, and we only have set positions for the unit name badge/promise badge/county badge on sashes, or if the Brownie does not have a sash, on either their shirt or jacket. We also have a District badge and this is sewn onto the sleeve of their shirt. We also suggest set places for all other guiding badges, but make it clear this these positions are suggestions only, and not compulsory, and the badges can be kept in special tins, or wherever the Brownie wishes, although I do agree that if the girls have gone to the trouble of earning the badges it is nice to see them displayed on their uniform. All non-guiding badges, such as challenges we have taken from this forum, do not go on their uniform, but displayed on their camp blanket.
 
#16
If for some reason a Guide took it into her head to sew her badges in an inappropriate position or design on her uniform would you leave her to it,saying it's her individual choice?

I must admit I'm curious to know where on a Guide's top would be inappropriate and what sort of inappropriate design one could make of the badges. I have to say if a Guide were clever enough to come up with something so innovative I'd let them keep it. :)
 

Burghilly

Veteran (100+ posts)
#17
I just feel that sometimes a little guidance or suggestion can go a long way. While some girls are happy to be given a totally free hand there are others that actually like and 'need' a bit more structure, or may even feel bamboozled by all the options - camp blanket? hoodie? gilet? front? back? arms ( left or right?) ??? - at the risk that the hard earned badge might just end up in the back of a draw.

I guess our job as Guiders is to be able to recognise those who struggle with decision making - how ever small the decision might be - and if they feel more comfortable with being give a gentle badge-placement suggestion then so be it.

I guess our other job as Guiders is to help and encourage those girls with decision -making so when it comes to bigger issues they have the confidence to make their own choices.

Personally I think badges look great on hoodies and I also think everyone putting them in the same place would look great across the Unit. For me it's a matter of pride in appearance and pride to wear our Guide uniform and what we represent. Now we have the new red and blue uniform maybe Guides can be proud to seen in it, rather than the old navy uniform which seemed to be designed to blend in and be as anonymous as possible.

P.S. - girls in our unit are free to put their badges where they like. Personally, I still think they'd look better down each arm like the old days! but then that's just me!!:)
 

fenris

fenris
GuiderPlus
#18
But as Guiders are we not also here to 'guide' or make gentle suggestions? If for some reason a Guide took it into her head to sew her badges in an inappropriate position or design on her uniform would you leave her to it,saying it's her individual choice?

Pixielation makes a good point when she mentioned the Brownie Adventure badge that comes in 3 pieces and does take up a lot of room. It looks really good when all three pieces are sewn to form the segments of a circle and I think it's worth pointing this out to parents so they don't have to re-arrange badges they've sewn on.

I also agree with MummyOwl. If you've gone to the effort of earning the badge it's worth displaying. If you 're likely to re-sell your uniform and don't want to sew badges on then I think the idea of having them in a picture frame is lovely.

Camp blankets can look really good too, but in reality only get dragged out a couple of times a year and I think of them more as something nice to look back on when you've left Guiding.

Keeping badges in a tin? Don't see the point - display them (somehow!) loud and proud!
But we're not Guiders, nor have we been for some years now, we are Leaders. And we're meant to promote girl-led Guiding. Maybe you feel the adventure badge looks better sewn in a circle, maybe I feel the sections look better sewn one above the other, maybe Flossie likes to add them to the next available space on her uniform trousers as and when she earns them. Whose opinion matters in regard to Flossie's uniform - yours, mine or Flossie's? After all, when the three Adventure Badges were first launched, one of the things advertised about them was that there was flexibility to arrange them in a circle, a stack, or any other formation - so no way is 'right' or 'wrong'.

Some girls like to display their badges on uniform, and some don't. Some prefer to add them to their keepsake tin - does the fact that you or I might not see the point of doing so mean that they are wrong, or does it perhaps mean that we are wrong? Some girls start a camp blanket in Rainbows and carry it on through all the sections, some don't. Some girls are scared of making the 'wrong' decision, and would rather let someone else do their thinking for them. Is this fear of deciding for yourself something we should encourage, by just letting them duck out of ever straying from the herd, or should we take this opportunity, where there is no 'wrong' answer, and no unpleasant consequences whichever path they follow, to push the girls to dare to decide for themselves, by not providing easy ways out? Not put off the experience until there are far bigger and more critical decisions to face? Even if their decision is "I want mine like Senga's, rather than like Izzy's", that's still making a choice, and thinking for themselves which option they prefer.
 

Burghilly

Veteran (100+ posts)
#19
I enjoyed reading your post Fenris. I am a new ish leader and one of the reasons I joined a forum was to exchange chat and opinion.

Moving on from the 'small' decision making required for placing badges - how does decision making happen in your unit for the bigger things, for example what you'll be doing each week? And does it take ages!!:)

Do you as a Leader have a say in what happens? Either from a practical point of view or monetary point of view , or simply from a time required to plan or carry out the activity?

Do you make suggestions or highlight activities you've seen or come across that you think the girls would like to hear about?

As a Leader I do my very best to facilitate - to enable to girls to do what they choose, but at the end of the day I work , have 2 young children and all the usual responsibilities that go with running a home ( like lots of other people !) For my own sanity and to provide the girls with the absolute best possible guiding experience I have to have some input into what we do.

Does girl- led mean 100% of the decisions are made by the girls?

(Apologies All - this is a bit o/t from badge positions but thought I'd carry on with the decision making theme. Will start a new thread if more appropriate. Thanks)
 

MiniMoates

Veteran (100+ posts)
#20
As the girls progress up through the sections, the level of decision making should increase, Rainbows 10%, Brownies 25%, Guides 50% and Senior Section 75-100% (increasing as they grow). We start the term off with a planning night and see what they want to do, PL's sit with one of the leaders and come up with a plan from the Patrol ideas. We guide their decisions, for instance, no campfire on meeting grounds, so maybe we could do trangia cooking instead etc. We have patrol led nights and we also have nights planned by the leaders with Guide input for theme etc.