Original France WWI Named Pilot Armée de l'Air French Air Service Officer’s Uniform Set With Tunic, Trousers, “Cape” and Kepi - 4 Items
Original Items: Only One Set Available. At the start of the First World War, France led the world in aircraft design and by mid-1912 the Aéronautique Militaire had five squadrons ("escadrilles"). This had grown to 132 machines and 21 escadrilles by 1914, the same year when, on 21 February, it formally received a budget under the Ministry of War. On 3 August, Germany declared war against France.
Now this is an absolutely stunning uniform set. This was the standard issue for a WWI French Pilot. Horizon blue French Air Service service coat, single breasted with all five brass buttons down front. The collar tabs feature beautiful gold bullion “winged star” insignia with the color retained very well. The right side of the uniform features a lovely “B” hallmarked Pilot’s Wings Badge with the colors retained very well. The badge was issued in the final years of the war, while the “B” hallmarked badges were used up into 1925. These badges in their own standpoint are very rare. The Sam Browne belt featured on the tunic is in wonderful condition and rests on the integrated belt hooks on the tunic quite nicely. The Sam Browne is a leather belt with a supporting strap that passes over the right shoulder, worn by military and police officers. It is named after Sir Samuel J. Browne, the British Indian Army general who invented it. The leather is moderately worn and does have cracking in the finish but it is still quite solid. The interior left pocket has what appears to be a name and possible unit, but unfortunately the script in which it was written has made it difficult to read, making for a fantastic research opportunity.
The kepi is a nice World War One era French Infantry Officer kepi in excellent condition. This is the lower height style kepi they first started using after phasing out the floppy or "bummer" type kepis. This style was only worn for a short time during WWI into the early 1920's.
This example kepi is high quality and most likely a private purchase. It was issued to an officer with a bullion cross design to the crown. Interior has a leather sweatband with no maker’s mark present. The included trousers and black cape are in wonderful condition with minor moth nips present and no extensive damage. The trousers do have “Constumery” stamps present, but these are 100 percent genuine. Many costume providers and companies often purchased real items to add to the authenticity of whatever was being portrayed at the time.
An incredible example of an extremely rare uniform set. Comes more than ready for further research and display!
Collar to shoulder: 3.5"
Shoulder to sleeve: 26”
Shoulder to shoulder: 16.5”
Chest width: 17"
Waist width: 16.5"
Hip width: 25.5”
Front length: 32"
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