Different Cap Styles

  1. Can someone/anyone tell me the difference or the meaning behind the different sytles of caps? Some look like dixie cups, others have huge wings - some are small & compact w/ small wings? Is it RN vs. LPN styles or what?

    I know the ribbons mean something - like 1 stripe means ____? And 2 means ____?

    thanks Justjenn

    PS We get to wear caps in our LPN program - but they are very small & just fit on the back part of your skull. I like the smaller winged style myself
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    About justjenn

    Joined: Mar '03; Posts: 217; Likes: 3
    Paralegal - not for long.


  3. by   petiteflower
    If I understand correctly each nursing school has their own design for caps (or used to) Here the LPN cap has the school colors on it and the RN cap has the black stripe.
  4. by   nowplayingEDRN
    That is correct petite....Each nursing school is different and usually the stripe on the student nursing cap matches the school color and upon graduation, the coloured stripe gets changed to a black stripe.
  5. by   CCL"Babe"
    Our cap had no stripes. The first day of school they spent a long time teaching us how to fold or pleat them. The folds were held together with straight pins, and the cap was held on by hat pins. Students wore the same caps as graduates/RNs. You had to starch the things.
  6. by   OKNURSE
    Yes, Petiteflower is correct about each nursing school having their own cap. When I was in nursing school in a very large metropolital area, we could tell which program the nurse had graduated from by the style of her cap.
  7. by   Audreyfay
    The cap I had when I graduated from nursing school had a gold stripe on it. When I graduated, they gave me a black stripe to put next to it. I remember a black stripe always meant RN, whether or not another color stripe was next to it. Some student nurses caps were all white, some had a colored stripe on it. As far as I was cocerned, the LPNs had either an all white cap or one with a colored stripe on it. They were fun to look at. Not much fun to wear.
  8. by   P_RN
    Here are MANY links to various uniforms, caps, capes and tv costumes.

    Here is a Canadian site on the history of caps.

    Also do a search on Cap here in allnurses.com as we have had MANY discussions about this very subject.

    PS my cap was a 3" generic with a 1/4" black band. I always wanted one of the really unusual ones
  9. by   prmenrs
    When I was selecting nursing schools, I checked out what the cap looked like--if I didn't like it, I didn't apply!

    Five years after I graduated, caps were GONE!! NO one wore them anymore. I still have my freshman cap, and 2 others in the top shelf of my closet. Unless it's Nurse Week, that's where they stay, too.
  10. by   ARBY
    When I went to nursing school (I think Clara Barton was one of the instructors:roll ) we had a white cap with 1 stripe following 1 side of the cap, we got 2 stripes for a 2nd year student and 3 for our last year (diploma program). Then when we graduated we took all the stripes off and just wore white caps.
    When we moved to TX, white caps usually signified LVN's so I put a black stripe on mine. At that time we had to wash and starch our school cap so I got a cap out of a uniform catalogue. It was kind of JAZZY compared to my school cap. When I moved back to OH and returned to the same hospital I graduated from most staff assumed I wouldn't know my way around.
    One of my instructors made a comment about it one day but I told her , "I believe it's what you have IN your head rather than ON it that counts"
    When I got married I made my own wedding dress and headpiece. For the headpiece I used the pattern for my school cap but didn't turn the brim back...it made kind of a "Juliette" cap and was quite pretty in fabric and lace.
  11. by   NRSKarenRN
    Prior caps thread:


    New link re historic caps updated 11/9/16
    Nursing History Museum Cap collection
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Nov 9, '16