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Weekly Discussion: Sash(ay) away

What would be your preferred cross section badge display?

  • I wouldn’t want a standardised display

  • Sash, set placement

  • Sash, no set placement

  • Hoodie, set placement

  • Hoodie, no set placement

  • Gilet, set placement

  • Gilet, no set placement

  • Waistcoat, set placement

  • Waistcoat, no set placement

  • Top (no/set placement)

Results are only viewable after voting.


Veteran (100+ posts)
Since roughly the start of the millennium there has been no set places to put badges. Not just in terms of a six-badge-should-be above-a-sixer-badge but in terms of what the badges are actually on. Some like this approach others...don’t. And this can be for a variety of reasons. In areas where uniform might be passed through multiple girls before finally being retired, tell tale unpicking marks might shorten the life run of a uniform. Others crave some sort of order and guidance.

One question that has come up with the new programme is if there is going to be set badge placement again.

What is your preferred way to display badges, if you like them displayed on uniform at all, if there was to be a cross section method of display. For TSS assume the new Ranger section instead, as it seems to be that there isn’t going to be a new section as such for 18-25. I’ve tried to cover several options, but there is a maximum amount that it’ll let me put! Waistcoat refers to a US style rather than a gilet like the current Brownie one.


Veteran (100+ posts)
Sashes never really stay on, so it is probably time hey were consigned to the uniform history pages. I think most items of uniform can be passed on for another girl, so sewing them onto hoodies looks good, but isn't very environmentally friendly - and then what do you do with the unpicked badges. Lots of my girls now stick them onto hoodies, which last about 2 washes before they stat peeling away.
The waistcoats like the American uniform might be worth looking at. they can be lightweight and easy to sew onto - unlike cardboard sashes, they would not keep coming off and they could be kept as the memory. It would be interesting to get the views of American leaders about the waistcoat.

I have read that uniform is not changing ( except TSS) when the new programme comes in, but it is an interesting conversation topic thanks


Veteran (100+ posts)
Personally I like gilets. They can be popped on top of most clothes, t shirt in the summer, hoodies in the summer, PJs on camp… When girls grow out of their uniform in the last few months of being in the section it also normally still fits.
I can see the appeal atheistically for sashes, but practically they do little, they slope off, can quickly run out of room if badges aren’t added neatly/have an enthusiastic owner. They also aren’t really suitable for older Guides or any Ranger age.

I’d like an official suggested badge placement, perhaps with versions for uniform variations (hoodie, gilet etc). Mainly because it looks IMHO neater and it’s quicker to see who has what. To some extent I think having set placement can help put emphasis on the importance of badges, I think for some “do what you want” translates into “because it doesn’t matter”. But not enforced.

With the new programme coming in I can see that there might be suggested placement as from what I can understand there are going to be badges similar to the old Guide “Little House” emblem (one larger badge shows that several smaller ones were earned). Wearing all of them might start to look cluttered…

Who knows what will happen, remembering at one stage in Guiding history it was going to be that badges were Velcroed on!…


Veteran (100+ posts)
I have read that uniform is not changing ( except TSS) when the new programme comes in, but it is an interesting conversation topic thanks
Uniform isn’t changing as a whole (aside from for Rangers) but some pieces such as the current Brownie leggings design are being retired in the near future. I can see potentially certain parts of uniform being phased out without replacement in the future, such as cycle shorts and the pinafore, due to low sales and an overall trend to move to a more streamlined uniform selection with less mix and match.


Veteran (100+ posts)
Noooooooooo ... not sashes!!!!!

Sashes are dreadful. They are too thick to stitch into, the pins bend, the weaving thingies come apart, they're too small for a section's worth of badges, they slip down off the girls' shoulder so girls get fed up with them and take them off (then go away and leave them behind). Plus they're no good for anyone with a bust.

My preference would be gilets. They are more forgiving size wise. When bought big by a small girl, they do not look daft, and when getting small on a growing girl they still look ok.

BTW, when my daughter left Brownies, I cut her gilet open at the shoulder seams and stitched it completely flat onto her camp blanket.


Brownie Leader
Staff member
My sash from when I was a brownie is a much softer material. I don't know if that's just age, but in comparison to today's offerings it seems much more workable.

I suggest to my new Brownies parents that they soak the sash, then wash using plenty of conditioner, only stitch through the top layer and offer velcro to go on the weaving nonsense. None of that should be necessary.

I gave up promoting the gilet as most parents seem to be nostalgically attached to sashes. However sewing is a dying skill - most of mine send their sash off to Grandma at half term!!


Veteran (100+ posts)
Australia has sashes, with recommended badge placement. Our girls wear them most weeks. They look smart, and the girls enjoy showing off their badges.
Our sashes stay on fairly well, as they’re pinned together at the bottom with a large safety pin. But the real trick is to have the pin close to the body, essentially at the waist, rather than at the end of the sash. They also have a sort of notch at the top, so they sit closely into the collar. The fabric is just a heavy cotton, similar in weight to school trousers, so reasonably easy to sew through.
Maybe uk sashes just need a refresh?


Brownie Guider
I managed to persuade most of my unit to get gillets by buying them cheap off ebay. They are easier to wear and you can get lots more badges on them than the sash. My girls look really nice when they all wear them together. A set placement would mean they looked even nicer I think, as they would all match. Also, a set placement would make it easier for me to see who had which badge.

I really like the US vests and their placement; they have the official badges on the front and everything else on the back. They are also unlined and lightweight, so shouldn't be an expensive extra piece of uniform.

I hope that the new badges get a bit smaller in size. Every new badge seems to be even bigger, and so you can't bet as many on the uniform.


Veteran (100+ posts)
Standardise place for putting badges please. I agree with an earlier comment- if badges are worth earning it devalues them if nobody then cares where you put them - including stuffed in the back of a draw at home.

A gilet would be good as you can get a lot of years wear out of a gilet- even when they don't quite fasten at the front you can still wear them open.


Beginner (10+ posts)
I have fond memories of my brownie sash, and I don't remember ever having problems with it falling off. Badges were smaller then, so you could fit more on. It always felt like a big landmark when you filled up the front and started on the back. I think a standardised placement would be good.
Our unit mainly puts badges on their hoodies, a couple of the older ones still have a gilet from the old uniform. There's a few who put them straight onto their camp blanket.