Ok, Morg, first thing you need to know about the uniforms you're getting is that they are made of some kind of polyester blend. This means you can melt them with the iron if you're not careful. On the working blue uniform this leaves shiny sections which make you look all jacked up. Just use lots of steam.
Basically, what you're going to do is put two creases down the front and three in the back, and iron a crease down each sleave as well.
Things to avoid:
- "Railroad tracks" - where you go over the same crease twice, but the second time you're a bit off, so now you have two parallel lines
- Having creases that are pointing off in some weird direction. They should be straight up and down and should line up with the creases in your pants.
So. To start: here is my working blue uniform, which I have just got out of the laundry.
To make the creases in the front, first fold the front right side in half so that the pocket is cut in half vertically.
Make sure that the crease is exactly in the center of the pocket, and iron it in.
When people look at you, they are going to notice the creases on your pocket and above your chest the most, so it's important not to screw this part up.
Next unfold the shirt and lay it flat on the ironing board. Find a point on the bottom edge which lines up with the crease you just made in the pocket (it is easier to just measure over from the middle edge with your hand, or guesstimate.
Next it's time to affix your medals and ribbons and other such chest candy to your uniform. I recommend you get some backing because it will keep your decorations from just sagging there and making you look like a dirtbag. They sell litte polystyrene strips at the NEXT, but cardboard or even some wadded up paper works just fine.
Make sure that the warboard (your rack of ribbons) is centered 1/4" above the left pocket. This is about as wide as a ballpoint pen, or another ribbon. Ditto for your nametag above the left pocket.
I didn't go over pants because, frankly, if you don't know how to iron pants by now, I can't help you Just make sure that you avoid making railroad tracks. The pants will probably have permanent creases in them so you only need to make sure they're not wrinkled.
1. Get some shirtstays if you can find some. These are basically like elastic garters which attach your shirt to your socks. They are kind of uncomfortable to wear, will tear hear off your legs (not that I'm implying you have hairy legs, Morg), and if they detach from your socks, will inevitably snap you right in the yam sack. Or, in your case, the bacon sammitch area. But, on the plus side, you look a lot sharper if your shirt stays tucked in.
2. If you find out you're about to get inspected, first thing you do is buff your shoes off on the back of your pants, then tuck your shirt down to your knees.
I will try to make a shoe-shining guide next. If you have sharp creases and shiny shoes, nobody is going to fuck with you.
Good luck with the Sea Scouts thing, and get us pics soon.
Your gig line is the line made by the bit of shirt your buttons go through, your belt buckle, and your zipper. Basically, they all need to line up. On males the left side of the belt buckle lines up with the edge of that line.
Irish pennants are when you have stray strings and so forth hanging off of your uniform (almost always on the seams). These can be trimmed with scissors but it's usually easier to simply burn/melt them with a cigarette lighter.
They are called corfams and they are for metrosexuals and pinko commie queers. They are always shiny but everyone knows you're just wearing plastic shoes. A good pair of polished leathers looks ten times better any day.
Also, you don't get personal awards that much in the surface fleet. You should, but all the credit usually goes to your division chief. It's typical to get a NAM for an end-of-tour award unless you're a fuckup. Instead, most Surface types get lots of unit commendations which fills out their warboard. I will have two and 2/3 rows in a bit once I get my pistol and rifle ribbons.
Corfams cost about $70 a pair. Leathers cost about $40.