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I am SO excited to share this project with you today! This mom, who I'm calling Navy Bean, really wanted a uniform to make her look and feel like a part of her troop, yet also distinguish her as a leader. The Badge Fairy to the rescue!
The "official" options for Girl Scout leader uniforms are quite lacking. There are *some* instructions, sure: "For adult members, the unifying look is an official Girl Scout scarf (or tie for men) worn with official membership pins and combined with their own navy blue business attire."
That's pretty vague, but the first major problem is that there is no specific required garment, like there is for girls who get a sash, vest, or tunic! They do offer some options, but dang, $50 for a cardigan, and that's before you buy any of the insignia? Holy heck! (The dads do have some nifty items, like a tie tack and cufflinks!) And not only that, but the suggested insignia options aren't really unifying. They make sense in a Girl Scouts of USA way (say if one works at HQ), but not in a troop leader way. I'd love to think girls would be inspired by their leaders wearing uniforms, if nothing else.
Anyway, Navy Bean had a few specific requests - to incorporate her service insignia, to display her council and troop info, and to do it all in a way that does reflect what instruction is given. I think we hit the mark -- well, we don't have the scarf (yet)...
Here's the official guideline, with the text blown up:
Most regular troop leaders, like Navy Bean herself, don't have most of the items listed. The tab and its bits are easy to come by. The lower left (facing the picture) items are mostly a result of many years with Girl Scouts, including as a girl. The Personalized ID Pin (basically a nametag) is generally for GS employees and service unit leaders, not regular troop leaders. But the top left -- neither Navy Bean or I know what those items are, which means they are not accessible to most troop leaders, and therefore can't really be part of a what a "standard" adult leader uniform requires.
But that spot is ripe for substitution with official items that do create a unifying look with the girls in the troop, and importantly, keep the spirit of belonging. For example, all girls at all levels have a very similar basic set of insignia on their right shoulder and chest:
With that in mind, I pulled from the stash and combined with what Navy Bean had sent to put together some ideas.
She and I agree that the modern style numerals (left) go better with the other pieces than the older ones (right). Good thing, because I only had the 6/9 and 0 left over from another project. The 213 is the right number! The troop crest is the shooting star. She also wanted to see examples of the ID set vs the round council patch. I think I like both, but the ID set definitely looks more official:
Here, we can see some of the awards that Navy Bean has earned. This is where girls and adults alike should wear them. The rainbow pin is the final bridge that can be earned - Bridge to Adult award for girl scouts who graduate high school as active girl scouts. She also earned a Daisy Pin award from her council for outstanding volunteer service. The pink diamond is the 2017 Cookie Pin. Which makes sense for her to wear, because Navy Bean is also the troop's cookie manager, as shown by the green bar in the middle of her tab.
The official guidelines state that the Volunteer Pin be worn above the tab. There is a general one that just says volunteer, but there is also one for each level. Navy Bean chose the Brownie volunteer pin as her girls are Brownies. The other pins are the WAGGGS, which is also worn by all girls, and the membership pin. This one is the traditional style. After at least ten years in scouting, Navy is entitled to wear the 10 Numeral Guard. And it's done!
What do you think about fun patches, or some other pins?