British Battledress, 1937–1961
The British Army drab Battledress, Serge was introduced in 1937 to replace the khaki Service Dress. Widely issued in 1939, Battledress was worn until the 1960s, when it was replaced by the olive green 1960 Pattern Combat Dress. The Airfix British Commandos above are seen wearing 1940 Pattern Battledress trousers with the newly introduced dressing pocket in front of the right hip.
Painting British Battledress Uniforms
The painting guides printed on Airfix, ESCI, Italeri, Revell and other plastic miniatures boxes list a variety of »drab« colours suitable for painting British Battledress blouses and trousers, ranging from »Khaki« to »Dark Earth«, with Vallejo 70.921 »English Uniform« being a midtone.
- Khaki, Airfix M23
- Battledress Brown, FWP325
- Khaki, Humbrol 26
- Dark Earth, Humbrol 29
- Flat Field Drab (FS 30118), Italeri 4708AP
- Olive Brown RAL 7008, Revell 361.86
- Flat Earth, Tamiya XF-52
- Khaki Grey, Vallejo 70.880
- English Uniform, Vallejo 70.921
- Flat Earth, Vallejo 70.983
Atlantic, Matchbox, ESCI, and Revell British infantry miniatures were cast in a medium brown plastic which lends itself to speedpainted by dipping.
Painting Canadian Battledress Uniforms
Battledress uniforms manufactured in Canada, for the Canadian Army, were a noticeable greenish hue of drab, which may be recreated in miniature by mixing equal parts of Vallejo 70.921 »English Uniform« and Vallejo 70.887 »Brown Violet«, or simply using Vallejo 70.924 »Russian Uniform« as the base colour.
Painting Australian Battledress Uniforms
Battledress uniforms manufactured in Australia, for sale to its Commonwealth Allies, were a greenish drab, too. In World-War Two, the Australian Army wore their own version of Service Dress, adopting British Battledress in the latter part of the Korean War.
The German »Feldbluse M44«, a copy of the practical British Battledress blouse, was issued in various shades of grey, brown, and green, instead of the proper greenish-brown hue of »Feldgrau 44« it was to have been manufactured in.
- Chappell, Mike: British Infantry Equipments 1908–80 (Lond. 1980)
- Jewell, Brian: British Battledress 1937–61 (Lond. 1981)