Friday 26 April 2013

Gadzooks and Prithee! Tis well I packed my Prancing Pantaloons.

Is it just me or does anyone else feel that Cavaliers have really let themselves go, the last thirty years?
In happier days.
I was recently painting up some of the Hinchliffe Prince Ruperts Cavalry Charge figures. In case anyone doesn't remember or wasn't born yet these were pretty much state of the art when released in 1979. In fact I went straight to the Hinchliffe shop and bought mine the week they were released, I then put them in a box until I had time to do them properly.
So when I got them out again, last month, I was rather taken aback by the amount of feather plumes, lace embroidery and gold brocade which adorned them. I had forgotten that modern research had completely changed the English Civil War wardrobe.
Back then the well dressed horseman had a brightly coloured felt hat adorned with several ostrich feathers. Now of course, he wears something shapeless his Gran has knitted for him, (and lets be frank, she's not the most talented in the sewing basket.)
Prince Rupert, as the latest research shows
 that he really looked.
And not just garments but the colours have changed too. Goodbye to the yellow, scarlet or purple regts. Those are just the flags, any clothing issued will be in Grey or Venetian red, a shade so dull as to make rust appear positively psychedelic.

Thats if you even get a get a uniform, Parliament issued many thousands but always forgot the trousers. I can see that the absence of keks would be a shock to the new recruit but must everyone of them have come straight from digging out the dung pit without changing? Surely one or two would have been caught out wearing their best and brightest.
Charles II is unimpressed by the neglect of the English trouser
trade during his absence.

I have several hundred horsemen kitted out according to the latest word from Partizan Press and a more shabby dull and depressing group you will struggle to find. Enough! No more!

Break out the Royal Blue and Post Box red. Red feathers and gold edgings shall abound, it is time that Cavaliers made a comeback and the Revolution starts here.
A contemporary Dutch Cavalier, self portrait 1657 - not so shabby?