Talk:Star Trek uniforms

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Uniform colors[edit]

I would like to see us have a table with what color each division wore in each series. I say this because it gets quite confusing during the movie years. It may also just be easier to show what type of uniform and what color, so we could also include special forces, engineers, security, and cadets. I may start working on this myself, and if anyone wants to help, let me know. TEG 06:28, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

Please just be sure to include citations to reliable, secondary sources, e.g. the Encyclopedia. As it stands, this article's sourcing is awful, but if you're going to add new content, it would be nice to see you set a high bar for us to bring the rest of the article up to. --EEMeltonIV 14:30, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

MBR and her son used to run "Lincoln Enterprises" with Gene's blessing and lust for profit. I think it began when the fan mail came in and the cast & crew were giving things to fans instead of selling them. LE could be considered the ultimate source. They sold the original fan uniform patterns, and I remember this: (by the 3rd season, by the time they had things figured out) GOLD was command, not command and anything else, just command. RED was services and BLUE was sciences. Also see Bjo Trimble, the fan who saved Star Trek and was the original Trek encyclopedist.

The command shirt was originally green, but came out gold on camera because editing and networks did not understand that SPOCK was supposed to be green and color corrected. See Nimoy's Books I am Not Spock, and I am Spock for confirmation. Kirk's additional green shirt was that color green on purpose, for the "Enemy Within" (the one with two Kirks). Early Starlogs will also confirm that Spock was color corrected. (anyone watching the original not remastered show will see Spock turn from greenish to yellow to pinkish within the same scene)

That it was meant to be green should be in the article if sources can be cited. Besides color correction of Spock's makeup, I recall that the yellow color was caused by an unintended interaction of fabric, light, and film, peculiar to velour and the dye used. It is said the green dress uniform actually matches the color of the standard uniform but was a different fabric that didn't color-shift on TV, and the same may be true of the wrap-around tunics. In other words, all the yellow shirts in early episodes were made the same color as the green dress uniform. It's logical but it needs clarification and a good sources cited.
Also needed is clarification when did costume designers accept that gold was the color being broadcast and subsequently did the color become gold intentionally. Obviously it was gold intentionally by the time they switched from velour to polyester in the third season, due to the cost of replacing velour which shrunk in the wash. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:40, August 25, 2007 (UTC)
Actually no, since the remaster it is even clearer that the nylon fabric was actually green, showing up that way more consistently than the velour uniforms. The decision was made for The Animated Series, once it was clear that's how the fans perceived it from the syndication and subsequent popularity of TOS. TNG actually made an effort to use a greenish shade of yellow, rather than the pure yellow of TAS.--Closettrekker (talk) 04:23, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Movies: White - Command, Gold - Services, Green- Medical, Blue - Sciences, Black - Security, again from Lincoln Enterprises. The address for Lincoln Enterprises is: Lincoln Enterprises 14710 Arminta St. Van Nuys, CA 91402 (818) 989-4978

Is there a reliable source that says in the 2009 movie, 'other personnel wear black one-piece uniforms of a much more "military" appearance, while dress uniforms are red'? Because i got the feeling that the militaristic uniforms themselves were dress uniforms, and that the red ones were for cadets, as no cadet is seen in a black one, and no noncadet is seen in a red one. I could not find a reliable source that says either way, and whoever wrote that portion of the article did not include a specific citation (although they mention Star Trek: The Art of the Film in reference to the admirable uniform in the same sentence). Just looking for clarification. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:19, 27 February 2013 (UTC)

I actually thought that the black uniforms with blue / grey shoulders were intended as wartime uniforms designed to minimize the display of classification colors. They were introduced during the Dominion War and there were one or two episodes where it was mentioned that the J'em Hadar (sp?) were targeting specific classifications of Starfleet officers. Such uniforms would not completely prevent such targeting but they would minimize the appearance from a distance. Any thoughts? Ajcomeau (talk) 18:28, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

(random contribution: sources very difficult to find without watching all of TnG and Voyager) - for those two seasons there are green uniforms in addition to red yellow and blue - these are starfleet's military uniforms.. perhaps it would be better to call them "ground forces" .. anyway, there you go. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:04, 20 September 2015 (UTC)


This needs rewriting according to WP:FICT, even if not deleted. Things to mention

  • different uniforms in The Cage, and also Where No Man Has Gone Before
  • the actual real-life costume designers
  • where we get this blue/red/yellow business from - is it mentioned in dialog?
  • redshirts!
  • the different variants of Kirk's uniform
  • some crossreferencing to insignia
  • variant costumes for other purposes - dress uniform, spacesuits, work gear, etc
  • the way we see in Star Trek: Generations the NCC1701D crew wearing both types of uniforms
    • why, in the real world, was this uniform changed
  • miniskirts
  • miniskirts for men in season 1 of TNG (quickly dropped)
  • Troi's nonstandard uniforms
  • the use of um, "padding", for female actors in the show
    • this is reasonably well-documented in interviews
  • re-appearances of old uniforms in other shows : particularly the TOS uniforms in A Mirror, Darkly and Trials and Tribble-ations
  • no mention of the movie uniforms!!!
  • what material were they actually made of (spandex for the TNG ones i gather. they were usually called "space suits" by the cast and were extremely hot - should be interviews about this)
  • the availability replica uniforms

and that's just if we are keeping to this name. A general Costumes in Star Trek article would have far more topics, particularly about William Ware Theiss's habit of exposing as much female guest star skin as he possibly could without being remotely obscene. Morwen - Talk 12:33, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

Because of a) the availability of replica uniforms and b) the ability to make a drawing of the uniforms, if not take a free photo, the screencaps clearly fail criteria #1 of WP:FUC and so have been removed. ed g2stalk 13:42, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
That's a poor decision. Taking photos of a trekkie wearing his gear is nothing like as informative or authoritative as screencaps from the actual series. I don't see when you're describing uniforms used on the series anything could possibly compare to, well, photos of people in the series! Although I had to wonder, were they actually genuine screencaps? Are there really so many scenes where apparently the entire cast lines up in front of the camera? Stevage 14:59, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
no, they weren't screencaps. they were publicity stills. Morwen - Talk 16:12, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
I am all in for most of those changes. I agree article needs work. I reccomend on screen appearances over uniform replicas as what appeared on the show is only official. I also am happy with articles title. Starfleet occupies most of the show. A seperate article about other costumes (such as the bajorans, romulans and cardassians) can be created. Starfleet is the main "entity" everything else is just minor. --Cat out 17:54, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
Actually this is not really true. Theiss's costume designs for random female guest stars are probably the most notable feature of the show. Morwen - Talk 17:58, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
I am not saying it was unnotable (notability is a binary concept in my view something is either notable or it isnt). All I am suggesting is that this article will grow too large just by "starfleet" people which dominated the show. --Cat out 18:02, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
The purpose of the images is to show what the costumes look like (or at least the primary purpose, and the one for which Fair Use is claimed). A drawing, whilst not as "authoritative", or indeed as good as the promo shots, would still serve the primary purpose adequately, conveying the essential information. ed g2stalk 18:48, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
I do not mind free alternatives. Its just that replicas are just not like the ones on the show. Show uniforms costed several thousand dollars each...
Furthermore it is much much easier to identify uniforms with pictures rather than ranting about them for ages.
--Cat out 19:10, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
Nonetheless, it should be possible to illustrate the designs freely and adequately. ed g2stalk 00:25, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
I disagree. What about dress uniforms? Surgical uniforms? Space suits? However I'd like to argue about this after the AfD. --Cat out 12:15, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
I didn't remove pictures of any of those. As I don't know what they look like, I couldn't comment. ed g2stalk 13:07, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
Oh I was speaking long term. The more causal (duty) uniforms were in the article. But there are lots and lots more beyond that. No single wikipedians income can have all that. Some uniforms dont have replicas such as various space suits. --Cat out 13:22, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes, but long term we should try to create free alternatives. Allowing fair use as a temporary measure removes all motivation to create such images. ed g2stalk 17:02, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
No it removes credible citation from the article. Untill free alternatives are avalible, fair use images should be used. I really dont want to talk about uniforms blindly. --Cat out 18:55, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
I just viewed this article for the first time and found it difficult to follow with out picture references. Although free pictures are preferable, screen shots would go a long way to improve readability until they are located.Futurehawk - talk 22:48, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

There's an interview with Bob Blackman here -> [1] Morwen - Talk 17:58, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

Interesting. I'll read it right away. --Cat out 18:02, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
I kinda love ya. That is an excelent source. Semi-cannon, but more than acceptable. --Cat out 18:31, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

I saw a old picture of what was to be a Phase II uniform during a show about the Star Trek auction. It looks a lot like the uniforms used for Star Trek(2009). Was this a mistake or is there more proof that the new uniforms are based on the proposed Phase II. If so this should be added into the article somewhere if it doesn't count as original research. (talk) 07:09, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

where we get this blue/red/yellow business from - is it mentioned in dialog? – There is no definitive in-universe answer for the division color change, which change was actually precipitated by the color which looked best on Patrick Stewart who played the captain. This also explains why Commander Data was assigned to Operations instead of sciences or command, which darker colors combined with the character's pale skin gave him a "zombie-like" appearance. I have read articles stating both of these reasons, but cannot find them now that I try to provide references for Wiki. Will add this as soon as I do.--Closettrekker (talk) 19:20, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

One thing that should be addressed is the way TNG cast have been seen on-screen constantly adjusting their uniform tops, pulling them down, after the change from the one-piece spandex costumes. Most notable is Captain Picard, which is seen doing this in almost every subsequent episode. Was this acknowledged by the producers as being inadvertent or was it just deemed necessary during filming, or was it written in the script? In any case it seems to bring up continuity errors as the change in uniforms was never addressed on-screen but is very noticeable. This move seems very inappropriate for a show that had been very successful and fans of the show find the switch as being unauthentic to the period in which the show was set. (talk) 02:03, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

TAS uniforms[edit]

How about mention something about the TAS uniforms? (talk) 22:08, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

In-world phrasing[edit]

In the section "Star Trek II through Star Trek VI and Star Trek:Generations" the last paragraph switches from realworld POV to fictional POV using dates of the Star Trek universe instead of referencing the production. I think this page should not be about speculations about the ST universe. (talk) 15:35, 20 December 2008 (UTC)


"Both male and female characters wear a micro-skirt version of the uniform in the show's first season (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint"), which many fans found distasteful. After the outcry, the male micro-skirt was never seen again."

My memory of the early Next Gen eps is hazy but I think I would definitely recall if Picard or the other male characters were wearing microskirts. Grcaldwell (talk) 20:00, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

They never had any of the male leads wear them, but check Memory Alpha's equitable article and I think there's a screenie for evidence. — pd_THOR | =/\= | 02:04, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
Correct; none of the main characters wore the "skant" uniform, but it was seen many times on background characters. [2]Sings-With-Spirits (talk) 21:17, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
I always thought of it as a "tunic". More gender-neutral. Boneyard90 (talk) 18:25, 1 July 2013 (UTC)

"Star Trek prop authority"[edit]

Someone recently added as a reference in several spots. The blog author's profile indicates he's some sort of automotive technician. Is there any compelling reason to think this self-published source meets the "authority in the subject" exception at WP:V? --EEMIV (talk) 19:24, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

That has no semblance to a reliable source and you have my support to commence orbital bombardment. — pd_THOR | =/\= | 23:04, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Merge proposal[edit]

The content at Starfleet ranks and insignia is overwhelmingly in-universe, but the insignia and trappings of custume-ry seem appropriate for inclusion in this article. With some trimming of both original research, trivia, and redundant information, it seems plausible that the tiny details of Starfleet rank pins & insignia can be covered in the overarching article about Starfleet uniforms. --EEMIV (talk) 21:02, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Most of the images could not be migrated from the ranks article, as they largely fail WP:NFCC as they are now, but I think that combining them would be ideal. There's tons of information on the development of the various costumes (some of which is in the film articles I've worked on, plenty more elsewhere) so I think addressing them together would be best for both topics. Der Wohltemperierte Fuchs(talk) 21:40, 13 October 2010 (UTC)
  • Support - The two articles are on very similar topics. They would look better if they were together. --Alpha Quadrant talk 21:46, 14 October 2010 (UTC)
  • Support. Furthermore, I support your suggestion at WT:TREK for the title change to a more out-of-universe title that comprises all of Star Trek's costuming. What would be sustained by trimming both articles down to only that which is cited to reliable secondary sources? — pd_THOR | =/\= | 16:37, 2 November 2010 (UTC)
  • Oppose. These are two major topics. I can see how rank and insignia would fit into the Uniforms...However will the substance (by which i mean the key details of the history etc) of the rank and insignia article be maintained should it be merged? I believe the pictures in the article are incredibly important to illustrate the descriptions. The pictures may not be the best, but they do the job. I believe that should the article be merged, it should first be improved upon, better descriptions etc, and then EVERY word of text be merged into the uniforms section, and should that happen, they might have well have been kept seperate. Bailo26 (talk) 01:42, 22 April 2011 (UTC)
  • Support - These are not distinct topics, they are closely related. Merge with distinct subsections. CanadianEditor (talk) 23:26, 9 September 2011 (UTC)
  • Support - This isn't Memory Alpha, these two articles are far too similar to be kept apart, even if the merging resulted in an excessively large article. I would also support a more out-of-universe title, such as 'Star Trek Costuming'.Euchrid (talk) 01:54, 15 March 2012 (UTC)
I have been bold and started merging. There was quite a lot of discussion of badges and insigne here already so the article did not double in size as I'd feared. It would be really interesting to get a disussion of the practical problems of costuming an SF series (no zippers!), what a designer does to portray the future ( wasn't there a David Gerrold book that described the problems as "in space, everyone wears long johns"?), etc. This would I think be far more encyclopediac than our somewhat obsessive list of "In Episode 11 of Season 4, freeze-framing shows a background character wearing his Starfleet badge upside down", etc. Writing a trainspotter's catalog is unfortuntely much easier than finding sources that talk about *why* the costumes were made the way they were. --Wtshymanski (talk) 15:45, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
Swell -- thanks! --EEMIV (talk) 17:41, 31 October 2012 (UTC)

Propose renaming page to "Star Trek costumes"[edit]

This seems a more reasonable title.--Amadscientist (talk) 06:45, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

  • Oppose. This article covers the uniforms that the characters wear. Costumes would include things like masks, make up, and full-body costume that affect alien features. These are distinct and different. Morganfitzp (talk) 00:13, 13 May 2016 (UTC)
    Maybe so, but "costumes" is grounded in the real-world, while "uniforms" is not. --Izno (talk) 01:52, 13 May 2016 (UTC)

Collecting references[edit]