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"FIW - French uniform color" Topic

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Personal logo BobTYW Supporting Member of TMP23 Nov 2006 9:00 p.m. PST

I'm looking for a greyish white for my regular French forces during the FIW. Who if anybody make this particular color or does anybody have a combination they would like to share. Any comments welcome. I'm looking at The Osprey Title "The French-Indian War 1754 -1760" Page 23, for a good example. Thanks


tiger g23 Nov 2006 10:21 p.m. PST

I tend to paint the whole coat grey and use a heavy white wet/dry brush

French Wargame Holidays23 Nov 2006 10:57 p.m. PST


base coat of codex grey
inkwash with thinned black
top coat fortress grey
highlights add white


Supercilius Maximus24 Nov 2006 2:52 a.m. PST

Just out of interest, what's the benefit/advantage of "washing" with ink, instead of just watered-down acrylic?

Militia Pete24 Nov 2006 4:56 a.m. PST

I use Vallejo and have done a mixture of light grey and white. Looks good in MHO.

Dave Crowell24 Nov 2006 5:38 a.m. PST

Ceramcoat do several shades of grey-whites. One of which is almost white in colour. "Soft Grey"

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP24 Nov 2006 7:17 a.m. PST

White prime. Base coat with Testor's Flat Grey. Drybrush with cheap craft white.

marius121424 Nov 2006 3:20 p.m. PST

Black prime. Dry brush with flat haze grey; I use Folk Art from the craft section of Walmart. Varnish with Krylon high Gloss when done. Mine look fine.

French Wargame Holidays25 Nov 2006 2:57 a.m. PST

Just out of interest, what's the benefit/advantage of "washing" with ink, instead of just watered-down acrylic?

for me it gives some depth to the shadows and I am lazy as it saves an extra two highlights


Happy Wanderer08 Dec 2006 4:49 a.m. PST


I have read that the French white was in fact close to a creamy white color rather than a grey white color. Reenactor shots seem to show this type of 'white' as well.

I'm still in two minds as to which type of grey-white this is and how to best represent my French infantry coat color fothe SYW.


Can anyone shed some detailed light on this subject of French grey-white in the FIW.


Happy W

RNSulentic08 Dec 2006 9:00 a.m. PST

The current thinking (in reenacting) goes toward the 'cream' white wool, although I've seen basically grey coated French Marines before. (long time ago though).

Its an interesting question, as most of the earlier reconstructions (like Chartrand) all put them in a more gris than blanc 'gris-blanc' but never seem to show the troupes d'terre this way.

Contemporary illustrations of French I've seen from the seven years war in Europe seem to support the 'creamy' color, but some Watteaus I've seen from the first decade of the 18th century look much more grey.

Remarkable lack of TBG's (tubby bearded guys) among those reenactors. The Indians look especially fit.

ge2002bill Supporting Member of TMP08 Dec 2006 3:54 p.m. PST

Grey, has nothing to do with the color.
Gris blanc (grey white) is a name, not a color.
It could have been called Marseilles/Blanc.
The easiest answer is look at SYW Austrian uniforms.
Same thing.

Luke Mulder09 Dec 2006 5:25 a.m. PST

If it was simply undied and unbleached wool, then there must have been some variation between what different contracters supplied.

Supercilius Maximus09 Dec 2006 8:26 a.m. PST

I've found Liquitex "Parchment" gives a good off-white colour for 18th Century wool uniforms.

Malartic17 Dec 2006 6:30 p.m. PST

"Gray" in the 18th century typically referred to undyed cloth. That said, the cloth used by the French tended to get "whiter" as the century progressed. Officers and sergeants had uniforms made up of better/finer cloth.
There are orginal 18th century uniform coats in the military museum in France. I have not seen them but have seen a post card of a French Officers uniform. It has a yellowish cast which may be due to age rather than an off-white color. My reenactor's French coat is an off white color a bit yellowish but slightly. The sun does lighten up
the color once it is worn out in the field. Perhaps, one of the boards French members can help as well.



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