Skip to main content

It's -5 Degrees Faherenheit (-20.5 C.) in The Grand Duchy of Stollen Today. . .

Seemingly endless white washes followed by a feather touch of the bristles, each application holding a small drop of black paint, to the gaiter buttons has yielded a nut unpleasing effect to this company of Hessen-Darmstadt Leibgrenadiers.  I was extremely careful to run the very tip of the bristles across the raised buttons and, fortunately, made very few mistakes that required fixing.  Some days, the stars align just right!

The Young Master's school district, along with many others in the area, has closed and, in a very rare move, so too has Michigan State University and will be again tomorrow (Thursday).  The university has only closed half a dozen times due to winter weather in its history, so you know it's cold.  My sister tells me that a client of hers, who is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota and with whom she spoke on the telephone this morning, mentioned that is was -27 degrees Fahrenheit there.  

"Zoiks!" as Shaggy used to intone on Saturday morning episodes of the original Hanna-Barbera animated cartoon Scooby Doo, which my sister and I never missed during the 1970s.  "And I would have succeeded if it hadn't been for those meddling kids!"

In any case, the cold provides a perfect excuse to stay warm inside and apply bush to figures.  So, here is where we stand this afternoon with the current batch on the painting table.  You'll see that I have redone the gaiters and garters on the white-clad Hessen-Darmstadt Leibgrenadiers and carefully dragged bristles of black paint over the gaiter buttons.  I've also repainted the breeches and waistcoats of the related officers red.  Next up, the facings and turnbacks.

I also spent some time this morning, after taking care of some online administrative duties for my cancelled classes, looking through my files, copies of various old prints, I have saved into a folder on my computer desktop, for colorful ideas on how I might paint subsequent units of soldiers.  In particular, I am thinking of additional units of combined grenadiers since 30 or infantry figures at a time seem to go reasonably fast.  Lots of room for color if I base these future units some of the uniforms worn by Wurttemburg toops, admittedly outside the confines of the WAS or SYW, as well as Polish Crown Garde, and a few of the lesser states.  In other words figures painted in yellows, light blues, and reds, to provide some additional color beyond the usual dark blue and white.

In addition, there was a Dutch regiment of the mid-18th century, the Walen Infantry, that for a very short while apparently wore Russian uniforms.  If I can uncover some likely flag possibilities, I might just give them to those Minden Russian musketeers I picked up last fall and call 'em Dutch instead of Russians.  We'll see, but I am getting ahead of myself here.  Let's get the current two companies of grenadiers finished first, shall we?

-- Stokes


Peter Douglas said…
Lightweights! We don't close the outdoor skating rinks until it hits -25C, and the schools have never closed in the 20 years we've been in Saskatchewan. My daughter's first snow day was her freshman year in university - when her residence room was across the parking lot from her classrooms.

Enjoy your snow day and stay warm.
Steve J. said…
Hope you don't suffer too much in this extreme cold spell, pictures of which we've seen on the news in the UK. Stay warm and have fun indoors.
Der Alte Fritz said…
Was -24 Fahrenheit Wednesday morning in Chicago and we had a HIGH temperature of -15 Fahrenheit today. Thursday morning will be -27 Fahrenheit
tradgardmastare said…
The Walen infantry sound really interesting! Keep warm and plan some units, perhaps create a minor Duchy’s force on paper to come back at a future date.
Be careful your brushes dont freeze Stokes.

Popular posts from this blog

Post-Christmas Excitement by Post. . . and a Brief Review

Can't wait to retire to bed this evening with this new arrival!
Earlier this afternoon, Digby Smith's Armies of the Seven Years War arrived with the mail.  A quick glance through the book -- after wrestling it from its Amazon packaging -- shows it to be chock-a-block with information on the various combatants who partook in the conflict, their uniforms, standards, etc.  While I've been aware of Mr. Smith's book for a couple of years, I only got around to purchasing it with some of Mom and Step-Dad's Christmas gift on December 26th.  I cannot wait to examine it more closely later this evening, and might hit the sack right after supper with some fresh coffee and the book, leaving the Grand Duchess and the Young Master to their own devices for the remainder of evening.  Weeeeeell, maybe not quite that early. . .  but all bets are off by 9 or 10pm!

Thursday, January 4th

I just wrote my first review for on this book.  It reads:

A highly interesting title on the v…

Back in the Painting Saddle. . .

It's hard to beat the richness of oil-based metallics.  The Minden mounted colonel that I worked on yesterday evening.  He ought to look pretty good when finished.

I spent a pleasant hour or so last night, following The Young Master's bedtime, carefully teasing tiny bits of Winsor & Newton, or perhaps Grumbacher, gold and silver oils onto the mounted Austrian officer, who will oversee the composite battalion of Minden Austrian grenadiers.  They, of course, are the fellows in the foreground.

Those of you with longer memories might recall that these miniatures have been on the painting table since January.  Real life, however, has meant that progress has been at a standstill since late February.  I even put them away in a box for a couple of months to reduce dust and cat fur build-up!  

However, I managed to get my seat back into the painting chair last night, and here we are.  A steady hand, despite the usual after dinner infusion of strong dark roast coffee, meant only one m…

Stuart Asquith RIP. . .

 The now departed author and hobby personality playing a colonial game in 1978.  No hiding the width of neckties from that era!

Another one of the hobby greats, Stuart Asquith, passed away during the weekend.  While we never met (I am on the wrong side of the Atlantic), I was fortunate enough to exchange a couple of short emails with him 10 or 12 years ago when he was involved with a blog about all things Charge!

Said blog was managed by four or five UK hobbyists during the wave of enthusiasm that followed the 2006 Sittangbad and 2007 Mollwitz refights at Partizan in the U.K. just as hobby and imagination blogging took off in a big way.  Sadly, the blog disappeared pretty quickly, but it was a real blast interacting with Stu even if only briefly and in passing.  He was very personable and humble in his emails to me, expressing surprise that a stranger in the U.S. had an inkling of who he was.

Stu Asquith's writing years ago in Military Modeling, various books, and magazines like Prac…