Minecraft armor trims update – how to find and use smithing templates

Minecraft armor trims are being added with the upcoming 1.20 update, but can be tested in experimental features now, here’s how they work.

Minecraft armor trims: A player character stands in customised armour alongside two more sets of armour, displayed on armour stands

Minecraft armor trims and smithing templates are a new feature coming to Minecraft in the 1.20 update later this year. A Minecraft armor update is something fans have been after for years. Not only is armour customisation finally here, but it’s also challenging and adds a new use to the existing smithing table.

Minecraft is one of the best PC games of all time, thanks, in part, to its regular content updates. In order to play with the new Minecraft armor trims in Java Edition, as well as any other upcoming new features, you need to turn on the experimental features data pack in the latest Minecraft snapshot. Once you’ve done that, you’ll notice a difference to the smithing table interface. Previously used for turning Minecraft diamond into Netherite, which is still one of its uses, the smithing table now has additional slots. These slots can only be used when a template, item, and precious resource are all placed within it.

All Minecraft armor trims and smithing template base materials

Minecraft armor update

The Minecraft armor update adds patterns to your armour, a feature that has no real use other than looking super cool. You could always use it to tell apart your different armour sets if you have some with alternative Minecraft enchantments equipped, or to differentiate your own on a multiplayer server, though.

The trims are made from precious materials such as Minecraft copper, amethyst, or lapis lazuli, and the colour of the trim matches that of the resource used. The only thing you can’t do at the moment is add, say, a diamond trim to diamond armour, but a recent developer tweet suggests this could be added before the full rollout.

All Minecraft armor trim resources:

  • Amethyst – purple
  • Copper – copper
  • Diamond – cyan
  • Emerald – green
  • Gold – gold
  • Iron – silver
  • Lapis Lazuli – blue
  • Netherite – slate
  • Redstone – red
  • Quartz – white

Minecraft armor trims: The Smithing table recipe for a diamond chestplate with a copper spire trim

How to add Minecraft armor trims using a smithing table

To customise your armour, place a smithing table and click the use button on it to open the smithing interface:

  • Place a smithing template in the first slot.
  • Put your selected piece of armour into the second box.
  • Insert an ingot or crystal into the third item slot.

You will then be able to remove your new piece of decorated armour, and all three original items will be consumed.

Minecraft Netherite upgrade

How to upgrade diamond to Netherite

As mentioned above, the way in which you upgrade your diamond armour and tools to Minecraft Netherite has now changed – and it’s more difficult. So, if you’ve got survival worlds you plan on taking into the 1.20 update, we’d recommend trying to get that gear upgraded immediately.

The process is pretty much the same as before, aside from the fact that you now need the Netherite upgrade smithing template as well as your item and a Netherite Ingot. If finding enough Ancient Debris for a Netherite Ingot didn’t already take enough work, there’s another incredibly rare resource required. You also need a separate template for every item upgraded, as it will be consumed upon use. Ugh, right? Luckily, as we explain further down, you can duplicate the smithing template, but it’s still going to be a long and expensive process to upgrade to Netherite.

Minecraft smithing template duplicate recipe in a Minecraft crafting table

Where to find smithing templates

Smithing templates cannot be crafted, and can only be found in specific locations around the world which relate to their specific design. Since they are pretty rare, you’ll be pleased to hear that you can duplicate smithing templates – but of course it’s not cheap. Before you use the smithing template, you can combine it in a crafting table with seven diamonds and its base material as per the image above.

Every Minecraft smithing template location and base material:

Template Location Base material
Coast Shipwreck Cobblestone
Dune Desert Pyramid Sandstone
Eye Stronghold End Stone
Rib Nether Fortress Netherrack
Sentry Pillager Outpost Cobblestone
Snout Bastion Remnant Blackstone
Spire End City Purpur block
Tide Ocean Monument (Elder Guardian drop) Prismarine block
Vex Woodland Mansion Cobblestone
Ward Ancient City Cobbled Deepslate
Wild Jungle Pyramid Mossy Cobblestone
Netherite upgrade Bastion Remnant (guaranteed in treasure rooms) Netherrack

Mojang Studios is asking players to test this new update out and give them feedback on how easy it is to locate these smithing templates in survival mode. So, switch on experimental features, dive into a new survival world – perhaps using one of our favourite Minecraft seeds, and get hunting. You’ll be showing off your armour drip in no time, so make sure you have the Minecraft armor stand recipe to hand, and you’ll be ready to shine when the Minecraft 1.20 release date rolls around.