Number 1 Dress
|Proudly displaying the Battle Of Jubilee ribbon|
An order of dress rather than a specific uniform type that usually refers to the generic dark blue dress uniform worn by most corps and regiments in the British Army - albeit with minor embellishments and differences appropriate to unit.
The basic No. 1 Dress uniform is based on the 'patrol blues' uniforms worn by officers prior to 1914 as an informal 'undress' (as opposed to formal dress) uniform. This particular order of dress is still used in the Household Division.
'Blues' as we know them today were introduced after WW2 for ceremonial duties in lieu of the various brightly coloured full dress uniforms of regimental pattern that had generally been withdrawn from use prior to the Great War. Full dress uniforms, however, survived in the Household Cavalry, Guards, RHA and various regimental bands and are still in use today.
Thus for most soldiers - who are not Guards or bandsmen, and will never get to large it up in red - 'blues' are the poshest thing they will ever wear. This doesn't apply to the Porridge Wogs, as they wear green doublets and trews/kilts (as appropriate). The Rifles also do not wear blue 1s, as they are chosen men and thus wear rifle green outfits. Nice.
None of this applies to the Irish or cavalry, who are a law unto themselves and wear all manner of bizarre dress concoctions when it comes to parties, abortions, weddings, funerals and barmitzfahs - all suitable occasions for the Number 1 Dress uniform... if there's anything uniform about it.
The above, however, pale it to insignificance when compared to the Legion of Frontiersmen. Whilst nothing to do with the army, they have adopted surplus 'blues' as their default outfit and have gilded the lilly to the point of absurdity. What a bunch of cnuts.