Orders of Dress

Below are detailed the various orders of dress, as described in Standing Orders for 1819 - 30, which are the earliest that we have yet discovered. These are accompanied by notes of any differences we now use, either because the equipment differed in our period, or because the unit does not have access to some items. We can be confident that these standing orders are close to what would have been in use a few years earlier, as they were written by Lt.Col. Thackwell to replace a set that had been lost.

The wear of summer dress is to commence on the 15th Apr., that of the winter on 1st Nov. - it will be as follows:- Officers are to wear the regn. Sabre on all parades and mounted duties, and on occasions of dress the Mameluke hilted sword.

Review Order

Officers and men to wear dress jackets & sash with the pelisse slung, chaco cap & dress plume - the men wear best overalls & the officers scarlet Cossacks with gold lace appointments. Full dress saddlery complete. The leather behind the cap is on no account to be turned down in wet weather.

(Differences; If it is possible to turn out the whole party uniformly, Buckskin britches and Hessian boots will be worn, and pelisses are not worn by Light Dragoons)

Review Marching Order

The same, officers and men having the valise on.

Levée & Drawing Room

Full dress of the officers as above except that scarlet pantaloons with long laced boots & Tassels & regn. Plated spurs are to be worn. At balls the same except that scarlet Cossacks and ankle boots are to be worn - no variation, winter or summer.

At dinner or evening parties - pelisse buttoned with scarlet Cossacks - in summer jacket & sash & all dress appointments except pouch belt.

(Differences: officers will not use Cossacks and ankle boots, but always pantaloons and Hessians. As, for our purposes, such events are "all ranks", the men will wear buckskins and Hessians on such occasions. For all ranks, at dinner the jacket may be worn unbuttoned, with an appropriate waistcoat, the sash then being worn over the waistcoat, beneath the coat. Pelisses were only worn by officers, and only as a matter of personal choice)

Marching Order

Chaco covered with plume - men in full dress, best overalls to be packed up for change at station - officers wear undress jacket & pelisse, plain horse furniture & appointments with valise - sash to be worn with undress jacket.

(Differences: As generally the men will have only one pair of overalls, these will have to be worn.)

Light Marching Order

Pelisse buttoned - in summer jacket and sash - best overalls and plume to be left in quarters - in this dress all parties turn out in sudden emergency, to assist Civil Power etc. - all mounted escorts to be in this order.

(Differences: Some ceremonial escorts will be in the Review Order, and pelisses are not worn by Light Dragoons.)

Field Day Order

Officers and men have pelisse buttoned, & jacket and sash in summer, chaco cap and plume, shabraque left in quarters.

(Differences: Pelisses are not worn by Light Dragoons.)

Field Exercise Order

Men wear stable jackets and forage caps - officers undress caps - Cloaks, carbines, pistols, pouch belts, and head collars are carried on all the above occasions.

(Differences: Carbines and pistols will depend on availability, and the degree to which we can achieve uniformity.)

Riding School Order

Men in undress jackets with swords, but without cloaks or collars. When officers attend the riding school neither bearskin or shabraque are to be worn.

(Differences: On some occasions, swords will be ordered no to be worn.)

Watering Parade

Officers and men in white trousers in summer, and overalls in winter - if wet, overalls always - officers to have plain saddles.

(Differences: Standing orders do not mention saddlery, but judging from contemporary illustrations, and Mollo, the horse should have only a bridoon bridle, and a folded blanket held on by a surcingle. Blankets should be folded uniformly.)

something relevant...

Full Dress Parades on Foot

Pelisse, best overalls, chaco cap & plume - In summer white trousers, jacket and sash - officers to wear undress, with overalls or trousers, chaco & hair plume. On Sundays - same dress during the day for officers and men outside barracks.

(Differences: Pelisses are not worn by Light Dragoons.)

Stable Dress

Undress jacket, overalls & forage cap with shoes - in summer trousers (for stable duties trousers always except in very cold wet weather) -This is the common dress off duty, and for afternoon parades - officers wear the undress pelisse - in summer, jacket and trousers - chaco covered, without plume, to be worn - swords are also to be worn - forage cap to be uncovered on all parades, on other occasions, if wet, it may be cased.

At Mess

Pelisse & undress jacket in summer, and dk grey overalls with silver lace.

(Differences: Overalls to be blue grey with red stripe. Generally this will be superseded by the dress detailed under levée & drawing room.)

In England the barrack guard is to mount in full dress - but at sunset the old overalls, undress jacket, forage cap & shoes to be worn --the full dress to be resumed in summer at 6am, & at sunrise in winter.

On escort duties, the men are to wear full dress with shoes and overalls, but without swords.

Except on Sundays, the orderly officer is to wear the chaco cap covered - on mounted duties the same cap as the other officers - with the plain pouch belt. He is not to be seen without his sword, and is not to wear the greatcoat on duty.

Leathers shining with a clear brown gloss.

Sheepskin white.

Cloak about 38ins long. To be 1½ins. Below the holster pipe ends.

End of the shabraque to be doubled upon the croup in marching order.

Sword to hang with top of hilt 6ins. From left elbow.

Cap to be worn over the forehead - chaco worn straight - forage cap obliquely over right eye. (In this instance they refer to the busby as the "cap", which had been retained for officers for court wear in the post Napoleonic reforms.)

'Tach to hang so the man at attention can touch it with his middle finger.

Researched by Capt Potts - E Troop, the 15th, or King's, Light Dragoons (Hussars)