A scarce original early Second World War first pattern British Army denim battledress blouse in worn condition.
Introduced at the beginning of the Second World War as a replacement for the earlier fatigues issued in the Great War and inter-war periods, it closely followed the design of the Battledress introduced in 1940 but was made from denim and had removable buttons.
This jacket is an early issue example which was only made prior to 1942 when it was superseded by the austerity pattern. The most obvious feature of the first pattern jacket is the pleated chest pockets. The material is also a different hue to post-war manufactured items. A huge stockpile of these jackets was left behind in France following the evacuation from Dunkirk. They fell into the hands of the Kriegsmarine who used them throughout the rest of the war.
The jacket has had a period buckle stitched to it to fasten the waist rather than the usual removable style. It has a split to it but still functions and appears to be a period modification. This has been reflected in the price.
The jacket is fitted with a set of original revolving shank buttons, some of which are mis-matched. Smaller diameter buttons have been used for the epaulettes which is a nice feature. All the buttons are held in place with the correct metal split rings.
The original label is still present inside the jacket but has been washed out. When laid flat it measures -
Chest - 22 1/2"
Waist - 17"
Inside arm - 16 3/4"
Outside arm - 23 1/2"
Shoulders - 17 1/2"
Length - 21 1/2"
The jacket is in good condition but does show some signs of wear and use as well as laundering. Overall it displays well however and looks to be very wearable. This is a vintage, pre-owned item so may have some other small issues commensurate with age.
A hard to find early war example which has a great look to it!
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