Thursday, 24 February 2011

Uniform rethink

Imagine these chaps in yellow and we are close.
Sometimes delays that (at the time) seem disastrous prove - in fact - to be fortuitous.  Happily some suppliers' inefficiency has had exactly this outcome for Beimbach-Schönau!

In late 2010 I decided to document the uniforms of the 1740 army.  In part this was tailored to the figures I was awaiting from Northstar.  I had decided that their Austrians were just the ticket for my military due to the State's close proximity to Wien.

Whilst waiting and waiting (plus some waiting and a bit more waiting) for the delivery, I designed my colour combinations and worked on a whole host of elaborate schematics.  During what turned out to be an epic struggle to get my goods, I came to the conclusion that the uniforms didn't "feel" right.  This was due, in part, to my preference for the somewhat simpler "cuts" of uniform.  Additionally the different styles (Hungarian, German and Grenz) seemed to over-power a relatively small military comprising only 13 Regiments of foot.  Finally, it seemed an uninspired and predictable choice.  I want a distinctive force not an Austro-clone!

As this is an ImagiNation and my painting progress had been stymied by late deliveries, I found myself in a serendipitous position - with lots of unpainted Austrians that could be quickly resold.  So I took the plunge and decided to go with a Russian/French look.  Thus the uniform plates will be redone -  laborious but necessary.  The regimental histories, standards and facings are going to remain largely unchanged.

Simple yet attractive!
The general rule for the mid-C18 is that "German and Foreign" Line Regiments wear a French style coat (either open or closed) with the Senior Regiments wearing a Russian coat.  There will be a couple of anomalies in the "Freiwillige" Regiments and these will be noted where applicable.  The "Grenzer" Regiments will be far more "wild and wooly" as I think this appearance better differentiates them from their more "civilised" brothers-in-arms.  Grenadier Regiments will also rear their mitres (or fur caps!) and will constitute the elite "Leibgarde zu Fuß"

Happily, I have plenty of mid-C18 French figures and these will now be worked on to create the first painted units.  In fact dedicated readers will recall IR.10 von Klingenbach (WIP) was already exhibiting a Gallic flavour and is close to pre-painting completion!

However, this will not commence immediately as today I will be working on getting the first fort building completed...


  1. One of my favorite quotes is "A plan gives you something to deviate from."

    So let us hoist a glass to salute fortuitous deviations such as the one you have just made.

    Most happy salutations to you, sir.

    -- Jeff

  2. Fortunate serendipity... sort of.

    Looking eagerly forward to discover and enjoy the new 'vision' of your 13 infantry regiments!

  3. I think my Imagi-Nation is quite close to you geographically (in the Balkans, between Austria & Turkey)

    FWIW I am using some Old Glory Albanians and Turk Nizam-i-Cedit as "Balkan" style light troops and my 7YW French as my "European" troops - but must say I am really taken by the Perry Zouaves as a potential source of my main "Native" infantry and they they may interest you as your Balkan Irregulars too.

    The only thought I did have is if you keep your uniform whirte (or cream) you can re-use your army as French (they do have one yellow coated Regiment, the Royal Lorraine)

  4. I think we may well be neighbours!

    I too have been thinking of those lovely Zouaves - The canteens and kit may just be pushing plausibility for a mid C18 setting though. Shame. There are some rather nice Dixons figures that will make great Grenzers but presently I am favouring some of TAG's offerings - I have just to persuade them to sell me a 24-man pack devoid of archers!

    Very true about the French in white but their performance in the SYW was so abysmal I don't think I would every "play" them!