National VFW Uniform
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) for many years, like many veterans organizations of the time and historically, specified a uniform for its members. Originally that uniform was the "current" Army Service uniform with VFW buttons. The rank insignia of the army was used to denote offices within the VFW. While the American Legion still has an official uniform, the VFW does not. Two portions of the old uniform regulations survive. The description and specification of the VFW cap, in Section 803 of the Manual of Procedure, describes the only required and specified uniform item. Additional sections of Article 803 specify how American flag patches are to be worn and how the VFW letter and post number pins are to be worn. The shirt or jacket upon which the pins or flag patches are to be worn is not specified. At the National level and throughout the VFW, there is an unofficial uniform of a "social" type. Even this uniform is rarely worn by the National leadership in recent years.
- VFW Cap
- Navy Blue blazer with VFW Cross of Malta on the pocket.
- White dress shirt
- VFW tie
- Grey trousers
- Black belt
- Black shoes
- Black socks
Nevada VFW Uniform
The Department of Nevada often wears the "social" uniform discussed above at social functions such as the banquet ending the Department Convention. For most official visits and similar functions, the Department of Nevada has an unofficial "service" uniform which can be worn with or without service ribbons and badges. VFW Post 12093 has found that the wearing of service ribbons and badges is beneficial when appearing in public at recruiting and other events.
- VFW Cap
- The VFW "Uniform" shirt is widely worn for internal events but is not suited for wear with ribbons and badges due to the embroidery.
- Their are a number of suppliers of unembroidered "Security Uniform" and "Pilot" shirts which are less expensive than the VFW Store and better suited for wear with ribbons and badges. Below is a list of suppliers which you may find useful:
Military Uniform Regulations
In the context of veterans organizations uniforms, each of the various military services say the same thing in their unique style. Ribbons, medals, badges and all other service insignia are forbidden to be worn in any other manner than the service uniform regulations prescribe. Retirees are still subject to military law and regulations but those not receiving compensation from the DoD are not. Service regulations, for all the armed services, specify that the wearing of service ribbons or medals and badges is authorized on veteran organization uniforms if worn in a similar manner as on the equivalent armed service uniform. They further authorize the wear of veteran organization membership ribbons or badges for active duty on their military uniforms when attending veterans organization events as a member or proceeding to or from such events. By logical extension, such ribbons and badges are therefore authorized on such veterans organization uniforms.
Remember that the VFW uniforms are "unofficial" and so not documented. The information here is gleaned from asking questions of our visiting officials, observation and other research. The truth is you are very likely to see anything. The resulting problem for those of our comrades still under arms or at least under the UCMJ is that the reality of a VFW Uniform can be effectively challenged should one of our members be "called on the carpet" for violations of service uniform regulations.