ESO Clothing Guide

Welcome to our Elder Scrolls Online ESO Clothing Guide by Nines!   In this article we’ll cover everything clothing; skills, hirelings, upgrades and of course crafting.  Let’s get started!

Table of Contents


Clothing Passive Abilities

Below is a short summary of the clothing passive abilities. If you plan to become a master outfitter, it is recommended that you fully invest in clothing and assign skill points to all clothing passive abilities. On the other hand, if you are currently working on leveling your clothing ability but have no intent to craft gear until you reach a high veteran level, then it is recommended that you allocate skill points in the following manner:

Must Have

Outfitter Hireling

The outfitter hireling is a must have, your hireling will provide you with clothing materials and refinement materials, tannins, daily via the in game mail. Unlocking each rank as it becomes available will allow you to stockpile refinement and crafting materials for when you decide to start crafting your gear. If you build a large inventory of high quality materials you can easily liquidate them via Guild Stores or in response to zone chat requests. Crafting materials can be an excellent source of reserve gold if you become gold strapped at any point in the game.


Unraveling is a must have for reasons very similar to the Outfitter Hireling. Unraveling will increase your chances of extracting clothing ingredients and high quality tannins from the deconstruction of unwanted gear and from the refinement of raw materials. Deconstruction of gear is an integral part of leveling up the clothing skill and the earlier you unlock Unraveling, the more opportunity you have to extract clothing ingredients and high quality tannins.


Stitching plays a key role in researching armor traits. Researching armor traits is by far the most tedious portion of clothing and the passive abilities here will greatly speed up the trait researching process.


It Depends

Keen Eye: Cloth

This one is up to your personal preference, Rank 1 is very beneficial in terms of gathering fibrous plants. Keen Eye will make fibrous plants glow which makes them easier to spot while on horseback or while running through the environment. It is important to note that this does not provide any benefit for medium armor materials as those materials are found off of Mobs. Allocate skill points to Ranks 2 and 3 based on how useful you find Rank 1.

1-1) Jute - No Glow  1-2) Jute Glow


Tailoring is important if you plan to use item creation as a method to level your clothing skill, see The Simple Way below. If you do not plan to use item creation as a method of improving your clothing skill then you can pass on skill point allocation. If you go this route, it is important to have a basic idea of when you plan to begin crafting your own gear, this way you can start unlocking the passive abilities before they are needed which will allow for a seamless transition from leveling to crafting.

Delay Until you Plan to Craft

Tannin Expertise

If you do not plan to craft until you reach Veteran Ranks then you can pass on allocating skill points to Tannin Expertise. While it is a very important passive ability, it is not necessary for leveling your clothing ability. At lower levels it can be beneficial to have the extra skill points to allocate to strengthening your character.   Just as with Tailoring, plan ahead so you can begin unlocking the passive abilities before you plan to begin crafting your own gear.


The Clothing Passive Ability Summary Table (24 Total Skill Points)

2-1) Clothing Passive Abilities Part 1 2-2) Clothing Passive Abilities Part 2

Clothing Leveling


The Simple Way – Natural Leveling and Basic Tips

If you want to keep things simple and limit your gold cost, then you will want to focus on leveling the natural way. To do this, there are a few basic suggestions:


  1. Deconstruction – Deconstruct all armor except for those you intend to research or keep. This will provide the main source of Clothing experience.
  2. Sell all “Ornate” Items – The extra gold received from selling these items outweighs the experience gained from their deconstruction. 3-1) Ornate - Clothing
  3. Deconstruct all “Intricate” Items – Intricate items provide an excellent amount of crafting experience. The experience gain from their deconstruction far outweighs the gold received from their sale. 3-2) Intricate - Clothing
  4. Harvest all raw material nodes – Paired with the Unraveling passive ability, this will allow you to extract clothing materials and tannins to use for crafting armor.
  5. Creation – craft the following items with the clothing materials you have available:

3-3-M) Creation - Medium Armor 3-3-L) Creation - Light Armor

Crafting these will provide the largest experience per clothing material. Note: At higher levels it will become inefficient to craft lower level Sashes using Jute through Kreshfiber (Light Armor) or Belts using Rawhide through Topgrain Hide (Medium Armor), a basic rule of thumb is to only craft with the most recent clothing materials you have unlocked via the Tailoring Passive Ability.   Ironthread, Silverweave and Voidcloth (Light Armor) and Iron Hide, Superb Hide and Shadowhide (Medium Armor) can be effectively used at any clothing level. Clothing materials you have outleveled should be sold for gold via merchants or the guild store.

After crafting your Sashes or Belts, you have two main options. If you are playing this game solo then you can sell your crafted items and keep the gold received. The other option is to trade your crafted items with another player trying to level their clothing skill. In this scenario, you will trade your Sashes or Belts for their Sashes or Belts and then deconstruct the crafted items you received from the other player. Deconstructing another players crafted gear provides a great source of crafting experience. It is very important to note that you can not effectively deconstruct crafted items with the character that originally created the item. The experience in this situation is very limited, assuming you do not find a partner to trade crafted items with, you are better off selling what you created to a merchant.

The Advanced Way – Power Leveling and Efficiency Tips

The advanced way retains the same basic principles as the simple way. The key difference here is the focus on the experience needed to level and the experience gained from deconstruction and crafting different pieces of gear.

As of Version 1.4 (Released 9/15/2014) Elder Scrolls Online uses the following Master Experience Table for all crafting professions:

Master Experience Table

Master Crafting Clothing TableExperience to level up is the amount of experience required for that current level, for example Level 50 requires 211,320 experience. Running Total Experience is the total amount of experience required to go from level 1 through the completion of the current level, for example, to go from Level 1 to Level 50 it would require a grand total of 3,879,215 experience. The Master crafting table can be used in tandem with the crafting and deconstruction tables below.

To determine the highest crafting experience per clothing material, the Jute (Light Armor) and Rawhide (Medium Armor) Gear line was analyzed [Crafted Jute (Light Armor) Detailed Experience Analysis Table] and [Crafted Rawhide (Medium Armor) Detailed Experience Analysis Table]. After noting that Sashes (Light Armor) and Belts (Medium Armor) provided the largest experience per materials, every level Sash and Belt was analyzed [Crafted Sashes (Light Armor) Experience Analysis Table] and [Crafted Belts (Medium Armor) Experience Analysis Table]. Also, you will gain significantly more experience if you are able to trade your crafted items with another outfitter and deconstruct the items they crafted, this is by far the best way to level Clothing [Deconstructed Sashes (Light Armor) Experience Analysis Table] and [Deconstructed Belts (Medium Armor) Experience Analysis Table]. The most efficient pieces to craft have been highlighted in the following tables.


Crafted Jute (Light Armor) Detailed Experience Analysis Table

4-2-Light) Craft Experience Analysis - Jute

Crafted Rawhide (Medium Armor) Detailed Experience Analysis Table

4-2-Medium) Craft Experience Analysis - RawhideCrafted Sash (Light Armor) Experience Analysis Table

4-3-Light) Crafted Sash Experience Analysis
Crafted Belt (Medium Armor) Experience Analysis Table

4-3-Medium) Crafted Belt Experience AnalysisCrafted Gear Power Leveling Example:

If you are a level 41 Outfitter and wish to reach level 42 by crafting gear you will need 141,800 experience (See Master Experience Table). To obtain this, the most efficient way would be to craft VR 10 Void Cloth Sashes or VR 10 Shadowhide Belts which net 2,168 experience per piece. In total you would need to craft 66 VR 10 Sashes or Belts [141,800 experience for Level 41 / 2,168 per VR 10 Sash or Belt]. In order to craft 66 Sashes or Belts you would need 924 Void Cloth or Shadowhide [66 Sashes or Belts * 14 clothing material per piece]. It would cost anywhere from 4,620 – 7,392 gold to purchase the clothing materials in order to level up based on the price of refined material stacks from guild traders, which at the time of publishing ranged anywhere from 500 – 800 gold for a stack of 100 materials.

Deconstructed Sashes (Light Armor) Experience Analysis Table

4-4-Light) Deconstructed Sash Experience AnalysisDeconstructed Belts (Medium Armor) Experience Analysis Table

4-4-Medium) Deconstructed Belt Experience AnalysisDeconstructed Gear Power Leveling Example:

If you are a level 41 Outfitter and wish to reach level 42 by crafting gear you will need 141,800 experience (See Master Experience Table). To obtain this, the most efficient way would be to craft VR 10 Sashes or Belts which net 2,168 experience per piece and then trade the piece to another outfitter in exchange for a VR 10 Sash or Belt that they crafted. Deconstructing a VR 10 piece from another crafter would net 4,647 experience per piece. So your experience gain would be 6,815 which is calculated as the 2,168 for your original VR 10 construction + 4,647 for the deconstruction of the traded VR 10 piece. In total you would need to craft and deconstruct 21 traded VR 10 Sashes or Belts [141,800 experience for Level 41 / 6,815 per VR 10 Crafted + Deconstruction of Traded Piece]. In order to craft 21 VR 10 Sashes or Belts you would need 294 Void Cloth or Shadowhide [21 Sashes or Belts * 14 clothing material per piece]. If you were to purchase the crafting materials, it would cost anywhere from 1,470 – 2,352 gold to purchase the materials in order to level up based on the price of refined material stacks from guild traders, which at the time of publishing ranged anywhere from 500 – 800 gold for a stack of 100.

Crafting and deconstructing traded Sashes (Light Armor) and Belts (Medium Armor) is by far the best method for leveling up your clothing as the experience gain is approximately 3 times more, and the cost is approximately 3 times cheaper, than simply constructing clothing items on your own.

These methods can be used to evaluate the investment you would need to make to power level your clothing skill. The ultimate decision of whether the gold cost is worth it is an individual decision and is based on your desire to reach level 50 and your availability of gold.

Researching Traits

Researching traits in Elder Scrolls Online will allow you to access and craft some extremely powerful player crafted gear; however, researching traits can take a significant amount of time. In regards to researching, it is very important to allocate skill points to the clothing passive ability Stitching as soon as possible, as it will significantly speed up the researching process. Below is a breakdown of how Stitching Ranks impact the research times:

5-1) Researching - Base - Clothing 5-2) Researching - Stitching Rank 1 5-3) Researching - Stitching Rank 2 5-4) Researching - Stitching Rank 3 5-5) Researching - Stitching Rank 4This example will detail the time it would take to research 6, 8 or 9 traits for Light Armor or Medium Armor. In order to keep things simple, the research times will be based on the Stitching Rank 4 table.

5-6) 6.8.9 Research Times - ClothingDue to the long research times, it is recommended that you focus on either Light Armor or Medium Armor, whichever you wish to use for your character, this will allow you to create the best crafted armor sets. Alternatively, you could take the “generalist” approach and make your priority to research 6 traits on all items then researching traits 7 – 9 afterwards. This approach will allow you to craft a large portion of the set armors, although you would delay your ability to craft the excellent 8 trait armors.

It can become very cumbersome to remember which traits you have already researched and which items you need, as a result, here are a few add-ons I find very helpful:

 Helpful Addons


AI Research Grid by StormKnight, CrazyDutchGuy

As seen below, this add-on will give you a short and concise view of the known traits on your characters. The top right drop down box will allow you to switch between your multiple characters known traits. The ingot, wood and cloth in the upper left will display Blacksmithing, Woodworking and Clothing respectively. The green check marks mean you have already learned the trait, the red X mark means you do not know the trait and the hourglass means you are currently researching the trait. The bottom bar highlights which styles you a have learned and can craft.

5-7) AI Research Grid - Clothing

Craft Research Timer by aTo

As seen below, Craft Research Timer is a small box that tracks the time remaining on trait research. This can be set to appear only when you are in the in-game menu and will keep you from having to go to crafting stations or check hand scrawled notes to determine if your trait research has completed.

Craft Research Timer by aTo





Research Assistant by ingeniousclown, katkat42

Research Assistant is a great tool, it allows you to set your Blacksmithing Character, Clothier Character and Woodworking Character which is fantastic for players who craft on multiple characters. This add-on will display colored boxes next to your gear and let you know whether it is something you should deconstruct because you have already learned the trait or if you need to keep it to research or transfer it over to a crafting alt. In the example below, I can tell that my clothing crafting character has not researched the Aegis of Meridia, Research Assistant notes this with the red box. The gray boxes have already been learned and can be sold, deconstructed or put to other use. It is important to note that the color of the boxes can be changed in the Research Assistant settings, so be sure you review and understand what each color means as it relates to the settings on your machine.

Research Assistant by ingeniousclown, katkat42

Trait Summary Comparison Chart:

Below is a summary table of the different traits available in the game. All modifier percentages are based on normal quality items. As the gear is modified to Fine, Superior, Epic and Legendary, the modifiers will increase.

6-1) Armor Traits - Clothing

Detail Data:

Below is the detail information on the Armor Traits:

7A-1) Quartz - Sturdy - Clothing 7A-2) Diamond - Impenetrable - Clothing 7A-3) Sardonyx - Reinforced - Clothing 7A-4) Almandine - Well-fitted - Clothing 7A-5) Emerald - Training - Clothing 7A-6) Bloodstone - Infused - Clothing 7A-7) Garnet - Exploration - Clothing


Item improvement plays a key role in creating the best gear possible. Refined items provide extra armor and increased trait percentages. The Clothing passive ability Tannin Expertise plays an important role in item improvement. To keep things simple, this information below is based on the Shadowspun VR 14 Jerkin and Tannin Expertise Rank 3.

8-1) Improvement Table - Clothing 8-2) Normal to Fine - Clothing 8-3) Fine to Superior - Clothing 8-4) Superior to Epic - Clothing 8-5) Epic to Legendary - Clothing

If you are planning on crafting Legendary gear, it is recommended that you acquire the necessary number of improvement materials to give a 100% chance for item improvement. If you do not have your improvement chance at 100% there is a possibility that the attempted improvement will fail and destroy the piece of gear.

8-6) Improvement Warning Message - Clothing

Now that you’ve learned how to make your armor, lets go look at the special crafted sets you can make! Read more


  1. Gold Making Guide for The Elder Scrolls Online on March 14, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    […] Clothing […]

  2. DaveThePig on May 24, 2015 at 2:18 pm

    Hi Deltia, really loving your guides. Im new to eso, and i wanted to make a crafting characteor to make stuff for all my other characters. What level do i need to be around with him, as i dont want to be leveling him up to VL 14 just to do crafting ??

    • Deltia on May 25, 2015 at 9:31 pm

      All you need is 9 skills, level doesn’t matter.

  3. Thorgrum on June 5, 2015 at 7:08 pm


    Great site ive been watching your vids for sometime now mucking around on your site. Simple question: do traits stack?

    So if I craft 7 pieces with divines will I get a 24.5% mundus stone increase? (3.5*7=24.5) Thanks !

  4. Opcf_nightmare on July 6, 2015 at 1:53 am

    question on clothing I’m VR 1 and just started all I’m doing to lvl clothing is stealing from davons watch and deconstructing my clothing lvl is 23 is there any way to increase the exp gained i have no friends even close to VR ranks and they haven’t even started crafting yet so i can’t do the trade thing as mentioned above, so should i just keep stealing and crafting or just go and do quests and deconstruct the items i get along the way? #DK #bestcharever lmao

  5. Steve Meikle on July 31, 2015 at 8:36 pm

    I am also new to ESOL. It is a great game. I am at level 16 but do not know the recipes for any clothier pieces above the base of homespun and raw hide. Do I get to know hide and above by finding books or items while adventuring? Or do they appear when I have enough clothier skill level points (skill level is now at 8)? Or do I spend points on tailoring and the others from when I advance levels player level or find the shards or complete quests that give player skill points?
    nothing I have looked at seems clear on this. IOW where do I find or acquire recipes for clothier work above the base level

    • Deltia on August 1, 2015 at 2:24 am

      Hide is from killing animals at or around your level. Books are found in the area, though to learn traits you research items.

  6. Clumzyoshi on September 16, 2015 at 11:01 am

    Hey, im still fairly new to ESO, just trying to get my head around the crafting system, im researching medium armour things in order to craft nights silence, question is can i make weapons from the same set? Or is there something to research in woodworking i want a bow..but as far I’ve not found many traits while using bows…looked all over the internet for something to explain it better, your site has alot of information but none makes sense to me as of yet, lvl30 nightblade.. About lvl 20 in all crafts…be great if we could team up or something ☺️

    • Deltia on September 16, 2015 at 12:20 pm

      Yes, medium and light are all in clothing.

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