All About Cub Scout Patch Placement

Become a Pro at Cub Scout Patch Placement

Cub Scout patch placement can be very confusing–especially for a new Cub Scout family. In this article, we’ll cover the basic Cub Scout patches and badges so that you can get your son’s uniform ready for his first Cub Scout meeting!

If you're a new Cub Scout family, you may be stumped as to where all those Cub Scout patches, badges and other "bling" need to go on your son's uniform. This article will give you a good overview.  

There are four places on a Cub Scout uniform to put patches or badges.

  1. Left sleeve of the Cub Scout shirt
  2. Right sleeve of the Cub Scout shirt
  3. Left pocket of the Cub Scout shirt
  4. Right pocket of the Cub Scout shirt

The "bling" can go three places.

  1. On the Cub Scout's belt
  2. On the Webelos "colors"
  3. On the Webelos cap
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Cub Scout Left Sleeve Patch Placement

Cub Scout Patch Placement
Boy Scouts of America

Your Council shoulder emblem is placed at the top of the left sleeve along the shoulder seam. It is position 1 on the diagram.

The small Veteran Unit Emblem is worn at position 2a below the Council shoulder emblem. The number on the emblem represents how many years your unit has been chartered. It is available for Cub Scout packs that have been chartered at least 25 years. It is not a required patch, so some eligible packs may not wear it.

Your pack number is below the Veteran Unit Emblem in position 2. The image shows a two digit pack number, but packs could have a unit number that is from one to four digits. Hint: If you’re sewing patches on yourself, sew the numbers together first then sew the connected numbers onto the uniform. This is easier than sewing each number individually onto the shirt.

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Right Sleeve Cub Scout Patch Placement

Cub Scout Patch Placement
Boy Scouts of America

The American flag is at position 1 on the right sleeve of the Cub Scout uniform. Flags are pre-sewn onto new uniforms. The flag may have been removed if you purchased a used uniform. If it is missing, you can buy a replacement flag patch at your local Scout Shop or online at Scout Stuff.

The den number patch is at position 2 just below the American flag. In some packs, the Cub Scout's den number will remain the same the entire time he is in Cub Scouting. Other packs assign a den number to each rank, which means the Scout's den number will change each year as he moves through the ranks. For example, when he is a Tiger, his den number may be 2, but it may change to 3 when he becomes a Wolf. A new den number would need to be sewn on each year.

Your pack can wear the Journey to Excellence patch if it earned the bronze, silver or gold level. Journey to Excellence is the Boy Scouts of America's performance measurement and recognition program. If you pack qualified, the patch is placed in position 3, below the den number on the right sleeve. The top of the patch is located 4" below the shoulder seam.

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Left Pocket Cub Scout Patch Placement

Cub Scout Patch Placement
Boy Scouts of America

The World Crest signifies that the Boy Scouts of America is part of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. It is centered between the left shoulder seam and the top of the left pocket.

The badges of rank are sewn onto the left pocket. The order is:

  • Bobcat Badge – 12:00 Position
  • Tiger Badge – 6:00 Position
  • Wolf Badge – 9:00 Position
  • Bear Badge – 3:00 Position
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Right Pocket Cub Scout Patch Placement

Cub Scout Patch Placement
Boy Scouts of America

If the Cub Scout earns the Outdoor Activity Award patch is worn on the right pocket flap. Boys can earn this award annually. For each year after the patch is earned, Cub Scouts will receive a pin that is pinned onto the Outdoor Activity Award patch.

Cub Scouts may receive patches for attending events or participating in other activities. Some event examples are Cub Scout day camp, district or council campouts, or designated Scout nights at sports games. Some activities are selling popcorn, placing flags on veterans' graves on Memorial Day or collecting food for the BSA's Scouting for Food food drive.

Patches such as these are considered "temporary" patches. They may be worn on the right pocket, but a Cub Scout can only wear one at a time. When a temporary patch is replaced, the old one may be sewn on a "brag vest" similar to this one or it can be saved for making a memory shadow box.

The Recruiter Strip recognizes those boys who recruit a friend to join Cub Scouts. If your son earns it, sew it just below the right pocket.

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Adventure Loops and Pins

Webelos Colors
Sherry Smothermon-Short

Cub Scouts work on adventures to advance throughout their ranks. The younger Scouts, (Tigers, Wolves, and Bears) earn an “adventure loop” for completing one. Adventure loops are designed to be hooked over the Cub Scout belt. Boys may wear as many earned loops as they would like even if they are working on the next rank. For example, Bears can wear Tiger and Wolf adventure loops if they want.

Instead of adventure loops, Webelos are awarded adventure pins. Webelos may wear their pins on their cap or on Webelos colors.

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Proper Cub Scout patch placement can be confusing even for tenured families. Bookmark this page so you'll have easy access the next time your Cub Scout earns a new patch.