Purchasing mess dress advice

#1
I have been lucky enough to be offered a commission in The Royal Regiment of Artillery. Conveniently, I have my tailors day on Saturday but I have been requested to hand in my tailors list of required clothing etc on friday. Thus I was wondering if any Gunner Officers here could

A) tell me what I need to buy
B) tell me how to get the best deal and who with?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Many thanks.
 
#2
Maverick00 said:
Thus I was wondering if any Gunner Officers here could

A) tell me what I need to buy
B) tell me how to get the best deal and who with?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Many thanks.
You won't appreciate this help: ask the Gunner officers where you are (currently the largest concentration of Gunners outside the RSA), I would think they are far more likely to know than any random arrser.
 
#3
Maverick,

If you are a standard size I would get down to the YO's shop at Larkhill (Tel Clk on 94322 5636 or 01980 845210). They have SD, Mess Kit and hats. I wouldn't buy new if you can get away with it, especially with SD changing in the near future. I would hold off on anything like a Side Hat until you know if your future unit wears them. Some units still wear Blue Jerseys with Barrack Dress, but again wait until you find out at YOs where you are heading. Stephan's appear now to produce the SD shirt of choice (off white) but your issue ones will do until you can check with your Adjt. A silk knitted tie will be required as will a decent beret from the RMAS tailors (not Gieves the Thieves). Don't be fooled into buying 2 pairs of SD trousers as you will not require them that often. Mess wellies are worth buying new, but YOs shop might have a bulled pair that fit. A Blues Jacket can always be borrowed if your unit wears them for duties. I would not buy a new SD or No1 dress hat if you can get a second-hand one (Gunner Mag, E Bay if YOs shop is out). By the way I have a No 1 hat in VG condition going cheap. PM me if interested.

Hope this helps.

uqfegd

pp
 
#4
Agree with all above but bear in mind that the RMAS Gunner rep or SI YOs may require you to 'prove' you have SD and mess kit and may not accept a second hand set - its more to make the tailors toe the line with quality than to check up on you. Official RA tailor in RA dress regs is Goldings; they made mine 20 years ago and its still going strong although the arrse of my mess overalls have mysteriously shrunk in that time... Definitely buy second hand hats if you can.
 
#5
Having had recentish experience with Goldings, I would advise you to find somewhere else - they took several months longer than originally planned with my stuff, and some of the items wern't up to standard, and had to be sent back a couple of times, the regimental tailor was distinctly unimpressed with the quality of a couple of items as well.

Regards

Tango
 
#6
Not a Gunner myself but Goldings do appear to have got more expensive of late. When I went to RMAS they were one of the cheaper options but a recent quote for a No1 Dress hat from them has left me laughing hysterically.
 
#7
Current quote by Goldings:

Service dress jacket & trousers 754
Mess kit 842
Mess kit rank 15
No 1 hat 98
Wellington boots 180
Spurs 32
Marcella dress shirt 33
Silk bow tie 22
Braces 34
Beret and badge 35
Khaki tie 22
2 suit covers 14

Total 2122 (conveniently exactly what I get for my allowance)

Thanks so far for views, keep them coming!
 
#8
Maverick - if you are inside leg 36, chest 44 and waist 36 then buy my mess kit! Whatever you do, don't buy from Gieves the thieves.
 
#10
You are getting your pants pulled down over the cost of your mess dress and George boots. Go any where as but where you got that quote from. I was very lucky, I got given a mess dress jacket which fitted me nearly perfectly so I only spent around £150 on the rest of it (trousers, boots, shirt, bowtie and medals) and this does include tailoring and mounting of medals.
 
#11
I looked a messdress.com and prices for mess dress and wellington boots are almost exactly the same. As usual at RMAS I have very little time to research in any depth about who has the best offers. We (the cadets in my intake) are well aware that this is blatant daylight robbery but due to the lack of time and lack of experience there seems to be little we can do about it.

I wanted to buy my No.1 tunic as well as a sword, but that would set me back another 1,000 so that's another issue. My Gunner rep advised that I wouldn't need No.1's for a year or 2 yet but I doubt my financial situation will have improved by then.
 
#13
On a semi-related, semi-thread-diversionary tack, can anyone please tell me the correct orientation of pips on the shoulders of mess dress jackets? I'm confused as to which direction the blue portion of the pip should be facing.

 
#14
Interceptor said:
Cuddles said:
Maverick - if you are inside leg 36, chest 44 and waist 36 then buy my mess kit! Whatever you do, don't buy from Gieves the thieves.
Are you a horse?
Nay!
 
#15
Cuddles said:
Maverick - if you are inside leg 36, chest 44 and waist 36 then buy my mess kit! Whatever you do, don't buy from Gieves the thieves.
A gunner with a 36" waist? Not ruddy likely :cyclopsani:

dpm
 
#16
DPM said:
Cuddles said:
Maverick - if you are inside leg 36, chest 44 and waist 36 then buy my mess kit! Whatever you do, don't buy from Gieves the thieves.
A gunner with a 36" waist? Not ruddy likely :cyclopsani:

dpm
I had them taken in when I transferred to the Signals...
 
#17
Beware Goldings - more than happy with the quality of my mess dress, but my SD jacket has shoulder pads straight out of the 1980s. Yes, he charged me the exact same amount as my allowance, however, he made out that he dropped the prices to do this. He also tried to sell me a load of stuff that I didn't need (long welly boots and spurs etc - George boots sans spurs is standard for my regs - and the boots are issued!) Luckily I was a SNCO before commissioning and had a copy of dress regs and could compare notes. He did offer some guys a 'deal' on a suit if they bought all his kit. Didn't offer it to me though! Oh and DON'T let him con you into taking his credit agreement - he should wait until you have the uniform allowance for you to pay him. But he will try, and I did get ambushed with that con and took the bait - d'oh!
 
#18
Maverick00 said:
Total 2122 (conveniently exactly what I get for my allowance)
There is a quasi-formal negotiation of the kitting-out allowances between the G1 world and the military tailors. The differences in allowance take into account things like the astonishing cost of making women's service dress hats and stuff. Highlanders are the exception to the rule: the cost of kitting out a highland officer is way more than the allowance (high though it is).

The amounts negotiated are, the tailors say, absolutely rock bottom prices. How the tailors still manage to throw in a free suit I'll never know.
 
#20
If you want good tailoring i recommend Samuel Brothers, i can't fault them for quality. But if you want it on time, with the correct invoice so you can claim your tax back and not having the suit you ordered (twice) lost at the factory, i would go with someone else.
 

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