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How to Order Thin Military Ribbons for Someone Else

Thin Military Ribbons for Others

Ordering thin military ribbons for someone else isn’t hard to do if you use USAMM’s EZ Rack Builder. However, it is important to be prepared with proper documentation to ensure you get the order correct. Check out our military ribbon chart for the correct order of precedence.

Documentation like DD Form 214s or a service member’s personnel jacket can help you build a rack of thin military ribbons for someone else. In fact, one or both of those documents can make this possibly hard task very simple to pull off.

In case you’re wondering, there are plenty of reasons why you might order thin military ribbons for another person. For starters, someone in your unit might be permanently changing stations (PCS) and as a token of appreciation maybe the team chips in and buys them a plaque with thin military ribbons on them. This is a great way to capture a nice snap shot of someone’s career in a particular moment in time.

Similarly, maybe someone in your unit is retiring and the unit wants to give them an awesome, career-capturing shadow box that includes thin military ribbons. These are wonderful gestures that can include the service member’s final military award not only on the thin military ribbons rack, but also as a medal in the shadow box.

While there are certainly a multitude of reasons why you might buy thin military ribbons for someone else, for the sake of simplicity, we will use the PCS and retirement as an example for this blog post.

Who Can Help You Get Thin Military Ribbons for Others

Unit leaders are critical in helping manage going away and retirement gifts because they can help ensure gifts are accurate. If a unit is recognizing a service member who is getting reassigned, that service member’s first line leader can ensure that thin military ribbons that are being included on the plaque or in the shadow box are correct. They can meet with the personnel non-commissioned officers (NCO) and ensure that what is in the service member’s personnel record or jacket is what is reflected on the thin military ribbons rack.

Similarly, a personnel NCO can help check the awards and decorations of retiring service members to ensure all awards and decorations are included in the thin military ribbons rack that is assembled for the retirement shadow box.

It is important to note that regulations prohibit the unauthorized access and review of personnel files. These documents are protected, so it is key to work with unit leaders and the personnel team. Do not expect to be given someone’s personnel file or access to review their records. However, you can work with the unit leadership team and the personnel section to determine what awards and decorations the service member will have earned that should be included in the thin military ribbons rack.

How to Order Thin Military Ribbons

Using USAMM’s EZ Rack Builder to order thin military ribbons is simple. Simply navigate to the ribbon rack builder page, and then select the "Start a New Rack" button. Once you do that, the ribbon rack builder will take you to a landing page where you can select your service. USAMM’s ribbon rack builder has the ability to build racks for the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Space Force, Coast Guard, Public Health Services and the Civil Air Patrol. You can order military thin ribbons or standard ribbons for these branches.

Once you select your service branch in the ribbon rack builder you will be asked to specify features of your ribbon rack. Again, you have the option to select thin military ribbons or standard ribbons. You will then have the ability to select your rack options. The ribbon rack builder allows you to pick how much space between ribbon rows (flush or 1/8 inch). The ribbon rack builder also allows you to choose if you want your ribbons aligned to the center or to the right. The ribbon rack builder allows you to choose if you want the rack of thin military ribbons to be three or four ribbons wide. Finally, select what type of backing you want on your ribbon rack. The ribbon rack builder allows you to choose magnetic or pin backing for your military thin ribbons.

The EZ Rack Builder allows you to then move on and select your ribbons and accompanying devices. As the rack is built in the ribbon rack builder, you can see and image of the rack as you digitally build it. Once you are done adding ribbons and devices, review the rack, and then add it to your shopping basket. It is super easy to use USAMM’s EZ Rack Builder. This great ribbon rack builder allows you to build a rack whenever you want, 24/7. And USAMM will ship it to you lightning fast.

Thin Military Ribbons

While there is nothing wrong with gifting a thin military ribbons rack, it might be more hassle than it is worth if you’re trying to surprise someone or show them that you support their military service. In this case, you might be better off buying someone a gift card which will enable them to build and buy their own thin military ribbons rack.

USAMM sells digital and hard plastic gift cards that can be loaded at various monetary levels. These can help the service member in your life offset the cost of their thin military ribbons.

And remember, USAMM builds custom racks of thin military ribbons for the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and Space Force. USAMM is also proud to build racks of thin military ribbons for the Civil Air Patrol and the U.S. Public Health Service.

Comments on this post ( 2 )

  • Nov 10, 2023

    Adam Perez, please give us a call or write customer service at

    — Steve

  • Nov 10, 2023

    Good Morning. If I just purchased my rack and received an award or went to another NCOPD school, would I be able to update my rack? Or would I have to buy an entirely new rack? Also, i ordered the magnet backing. Would that impact anything regarding my question?

    — Adam Perez

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