Pilot Ranking Stripes
No uniform is complete without ranking stripes and they can vary from airline to airline depending on preferred color, size and width. Get the all the insights to pilot ranking stripes and how to incorporate them in your uniform.
Show your rank
The modern day pilot look took its beginning with Pan Am introducing new uniforms inspired by naval officers, instead of the earlier airforce-inspired appearance.
The new commercial look showcased the pilot ranking stripes on the lower sleeves.
The same placement as seen on most uniforms today, while modern day pilots also emphasize their rank with shoulder epaulettes featuring ranking stripes.
How to rank
One. Two. Three. Or four stripes.
Not five. Not six. One to four.
Four and three stripes highlight the flight deck:
- The captain wears four stripes
- The first officer is allocated three stripes
Sometimes, you will see a senior first officer with three stripes and a first officer with two stripes. However, most carriers favor the above scenario.
Most airlines also use two stripes to identify the second officer; however, occasionally two stripes may indicate the lead flight attendant.
Pilots in training and flight attendants may wear one stripe depending on carrier.
We rarely create flight attendant uniforms with ranking stripes as we use other insignia or features to indicate cabin crew rank.
Colour it up
Silver. Gold. Champagne. Light gold. Grey. Dark silver.
Options are plenty when choosing color for your pilot ranking stripes.
Our clients often opt for a color designed specifically to their uniform.
Icelandair uniforms come with a custom gold color, whereas Star Air have gone for a combination of gold and silver.
Jazeera Airways use gold braids to complement their pilot uniforms.
The key takeaway is to align the color of your pilot ranking stripes with the look of your uniform to ensure a perfect color match and a professional pilot jacket.
Also, do not forget the epaulettes. They also come in several colors.
Black and navy are common colors, while dark grey is also an option.
The takeaway is to align your preferred colors to make sure epaulettes and ranking stripes match.
Size it up
The same applies for the width of your stripes, as well as the length and width of your epaulettes.
Be careful of making stripes too wide or too narrow – and ensure the size of your epaulettes match the shoulder straps on your uniform shirt.
A lot of thought and consideration should go into creating the perfect look and choosing the right pilot ranking stripes, along with epaulettes, for your next uniform.
The task seems simple. But it can be tricky.
Reach out if you need any assistance.