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  • Square neckerchiefs?

    From a usefulness and distinction point of view I'd like to see my newly formed troop opt for an "old school" square neckerchief instead of the flimsy decorative ones most troops wear. Does anyone here wear one? Does your troop wear them? How might I convince the boys it's a good idea? Ultimately it's up to them, of course.

  • #2
    A square necker is far more practical.

    I wear one, but only on outings where I actually use it for more than decoration.

    Stosh

    Comment


    • #3
      Not only are the square ones historical (BSA used them for decades), they are far more practical, as Stosh said.

      The modern triangle neckerchief is okay if you want to roll it up and look sharp, but it's too small for anything useful in the field and the material is non-absorbent.

      Selling points for the square: usefulness (much larger size for cravats, bandana, etc.); comfort (the troop can pick whatever material and pattern they wish...something with natural fibers); style (tough to roll a big square one to the nth degree, so wear it loosely like yesteryear)...and the scouts might actually wear them!

      I'm in a hurry and must run, but there is a thread here from a few years ago that gave instructions on how to make your own homemade larger neckerchiefs...good stuff. Pick the material, cut, sew...something can be done in-house.

      Comment


      • #4
        You made my day. I still wear my old square BSA from back in the day!

        Here's a link with much useful info that Kudu provided.
        http://www.inquiry.net/uniforms/neckerchief/index.htm

        also
        http://www.scouter.com/forum/uniform...r-an-old-troop
        http://www.scouter.com/forum/uniform...t-neckerchiefs

        Comment


        • #5
          My Honor Scouts all wore Myer Flags as their necker. It added yet another element of usefulness to the necker.

          Stosh

          Comment


          • #6
            I'd love to see my home unit adopt square neckers, in fact I'm shocked the Wood Badge neckers aren't square. Everything should have multiple uses, and the square necker is not just an ornament.

            Comment


            • jblake47
              jblake47 commented
              Editing a comment
              I'm planning on making square neckers for everyone in my new troop along with training on how to make the full use of them.

              Stosh

          • #7
            Square neckers are definitely more useful, but they can also be more difficult to wear neatly. The BPSA uses them, but from group photos it looks like a lot of kids (especially younger ones) have a hard time with them. It's twice the amount of fabric, so it is harder to get it all neat and tidy.

            I have one, but I'm personally not a fan. Despite the more limited uses of the triangle one, I still prefer it.

            Comment


            • #8
              I agree that the square necker is far more difficult to look neat around the neck. However, once the triangular necker became more of an accessory, the idea of a messy looking necker went by the wayside. But if one is only interested in looking good and not necessarily need to be practical, the pockets, epaulettes and such could disappear in a heart beat. No more sewing pockets shut to put on rank badges, etc. The pants could lose the belt loops and look more like dress pants, and of course the extra pockets and flaps could disappear as well. The zip-offs would go away, no dress pants have zip-offs.

              How far does one want to go to look nice vs. be practical. Personal opinion will play itself out on that issue. Heck, there are a number of scouts and scouters out there that think a t-shirt and blue-jeans is good enough.

              Stosh

              Comment


              • EmberMike
                EmberMike commented
                Editing a comment
                I think it depends on your definitions of "practical" and "useful." Also depends on exactly what you think a square necker might be useful for. It has some first-aid uses and other emergency situation applications. But for the most part the usefulness of it compared to a triangle necker is based in unusual circumstances.

                When, by comparison, the example you use of pockets being sewn shut, that's an issue of usefulness that I think could play out on a daily basis. As a scout or as a leader, those pockets are very useful for various flat objects, papers, Totin cards, blue cards, etc. I think the utility of pockets is far greater and far more frequently used than that of a square necker.

                So in this case, I have to stick with my opinion that I'd prefer everyone look a little neater in uniform vs. having a slightly more useful (in fairly unlikely situations) neckerchief.

              • jblake47
                jblake47 commented
                Editing a comment
                If the square necker was for emergency use only vs. decorative addition to the uniform, I would agree with you. But I use my necker to keep the sun off my neck, and because I don't view it as all that necessary for decoration, I soak it down with water on a hot day. That evaporation on the back of the neck is a god-send. I have also wrapped up ice and put it in my hat to keep cool on a hot day. On cold days, I cinch up my woggle to keep the old air out, I fluff up the necker as much as possible to catch as much air insulation as possible. I have also used it to hold small items I collect on a trek as necessary, tying the four corners together and tucking in my belt.

                I have used it as a hotpad when I'm grabbing hot fry pans out of the fire and a napkin while dining. If served really hot food in my mess kit, It goes on the bottom of my mess kit so I can hold it in my hand.

                I use it as a washcloth in the morning and a towel the rest of the day. I have used it to lay over a jac shirt pillow when sleeping. It's a lot more comfortable that laying my face on a wool jacket.

                I think a lot of people are afraid to use their neckers as anything other than decoration unless it's an emergency. There's a ton of camp chores and personal hygiene that an extra camp towel, bandanas, hot pads, would invalidate if people would make use of their neckers as a practical part of their uniform and not just decoration.

                Stosh

                Stosh

                I guess I make more use out of neckers than just for emergencies only vs. decoration.

            • #9
              There are different views on this. For me function is important, and any tool that helps us "be prepared" is a good one.

              Comment


              • #10
                YAY! In our 1st Committee meeting for our new troop we began a discussion about neckerchiefs and getting them made locally since we are in the Far East Council. I suggested the square cotton necker and my reasons for it. My ASM agreed wholeheartedly. The committee went right along!

                Comment


                • jblake47
                  jblake47 commented
                  Editing a comment
                  So, now the question is: after all the adults had their say-so, what do the boys think?

                  Stosh

              • #11
                The boys had no problem with it at all. They seemed to like the idea of the usefulness and uniqueness.

                Comment


                • #12
                  Set the example. Adult leaders should wear them too. I see quite a few at my RT wear none, or merely WB beads under collar. Rarely the full necker. District Committee opted for 36" triangle neckers for District level folks. I wear it, fits and looks good. Now if all the District level folks would wear them...

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Question for those using the square neckers: Under or over collar? If you're using the square neckers out of tradition, traditionally they'd be work over the collar, a look that is pretty uncommon in the BSA today.

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      We plan to wear it over the collar.

                      Comment


                      • jblake47
                        jblake47 commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Square neckers go over the collar whereas the triangular neckers are generally perceived as ornamental and under the collar holds it in place somewhat better. I wear all my neckers over the collar as do my boys.

                        Stosh
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