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Glossary of Terms


Accoutrement is a general term referring to the equipment worn by a soldier that is in addition to his or her clothing and weapons. In terms of Wyedean’s products this means anything that can be fixed or attached to a uniform.


An aiguillette, from the French word meaning a small needle, is an ornamental braided cord, usually manufactured from a gold or silver metallic yarn, typically worn on a ceremonial military uniform to denote an honour.

View our aiguillettes.

Badge – Hand Embroidered

Hand embroidery, as the name would suggest, is embroidery done manually by hand. An image is formed on a badge by the sewing and embroidering of small metallic threads, beads and pearls. Hand embroidery is slow and painstaking but the results are visually arresting.

View our hand embroidered badges.

Badge – Machine Embroidered

Machine embroidered badges are mass produced using an embroidery machine which builds up the image on the badge by stitching many different coloured threads over and over. Machine embroidery is much cheaper than hand embroidery due to its speed and efficiency.

View our machine embroidered badges.

Badge – Woven

Similarly to machine embroidery, a woven badge is mass produced on a weaving machine but the design on the badge is intrinsically part of the badge itself. It is woven as one with the backing material, whereas with machine embroidery, the design is actually stitched onto a separate piece of material.

View our woven badges.


A braid, also known as a plait, is a complex pattern that is formed by the twisting or interlacing of three or more strands. Braids have a multitude of uses but can be used, for example, to embellish sleeves, cuffs, trouser legs or caps.

View our braids.


A brassard, also referred to as an armlet, is a detachable piece of cloth or material that is worn around the upper arm in order to denote a unit, role or rank.

View our brassards and armlets.


A busby is the English name for the Hungarian shako, which is a military head-dress made of fur that was originally worn by Hungarian Hussars. Not to be mistaken for a bearskin cap, a busby is still worn ceremonially by the Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh guards.

Busby Line

A busby line is a type of cord or braid that is wrapped around the busby and attached to a body line. Its purpose is to allow its wearer to easily retain the busby in the event of it falling or being knocked off his head.

View our busby lines.

Cap Tally

A cap tally is a piece of black nylon webbing complete with gold woven text that is worn on the peaked cap of a sailor in the Royal Navy to denote his or her ship. An example might be HMS Queen Elizabeth for the recently-commissioned warship.
View our cap tallies.


A chevron, or service stripe is a piece of insignia used to denote the wearer’s rank. The number of chevrons (also referred to as bars) and the colour of the chevrons and backing cloth denote the rank, division and force.

View our chevrons.


Epaulettes are ornamental shoulder pieces used to denote ranks within armed forces. Usually limited to ceremonial dress, epaulettes often feature hanging fringes which decorate the shoulder. Epaulettes can also be referred to as shoulder boards or shoulder marks.

View our epaulettes.


Frogs, or frogging is an important decorative feature of military uniforms, in particular that of the cavalry or Hussars. Frogging refers to the narrow cord or braid that is stitched horizontally in intricate patterns to the ceremonial jackets.

View our frogging items.


The word gorget stems from the French word gorge, meaning throat, and was traditionally a narrow band of material wrapped around the throat to offer protection as part of the wearer’s armour. In more recent times it has evolved to become a gorget patch that is used as an item of rank insignia and worn on the collar.

View our gorgets.


A haberdasher is a person who sells small textile articles for sewing such as buttons, ribbons, laces, tapes, webbing and zips. The articles sold by a haberdasher are referred to as haberdashery.


A lace is usually a delicate fabric made of yarn or thread that is made either by machine or by hand in a web-like pattern. Laces can take on many different forms and patterns and can be knotted, crocheted or made using a needle and thread.

View our laces.

A lanyard is a cord or strap that is worn around the neck or shoulder that is traditionally used to carry a pistol, sword or whistle. Different colour combinations and braid patterns denote the wearer’s qualification or regiment.

View our lanyards.


An olivette is a wooden toggle, similar to the buttons on a duffel coat. Traditionally used on a frock coat, olivettes are usually covered in crocheted worsted yarn.

View our olivettes.

Rank Badges

Rank badges are items of military insignia used to denote the wearer’s rank. For field officers these generally take the form of a badge or patch, but for officers in full dress they take the form of epaulettes.

View our rank badges.


Ribbons are similar in form to laces, webbings, braids and tapes, but in terms of their military application, are usually reserved for decorating and identifying service medals. Medal ribbons are usually mounted on small metal bars and worn in place of medals.

View our ribbons.

Sam Browne Belt

Typically a wide, brown, leather, waist belt that attaches to a thinner shoulder cross-belt that fastens diagonally across the right shoulder. Traditionally used to carry a sword and in more recent times a pistol.

View our Sam Browne belts.


A sash is a large colourful ribbon or webbing band that is worn across the body from either shoulder to hip (shoulder sash), or around the hips (waist sash). Shoulder sashes are for ceremonial duties whereas a waist sash is often used for more practical purposes.

View our sashes here.


A shemagh, also known as a keffiyeh or kufiya, is a traditional Middle-Eastern head-dress that is fashioned from a patterned square scarf. Made of cotton, it is usually worn to protect the face of its owner from sand and dust.

View our shemaghs.

Ship’s Badge

A ship’s badge is a crest or plaque on a hardwood backing shield, that features the official crest of a commissioned unit in her majesty’s fleet. These items of memorabilia are usually given as gifts during formal presentations or awards.

View our ship’s badges.

Stable Belt

A stable belt, as the name would suggest, is a belt that is an item of military uniform that was traditionally worn by cavalrymen when cleaning out stables or tending to their horses. In the 1950s, however, their use spread to all branches of the armed forces adding colour to otherwise drab uniforms.

View our stable belts.

Sword Knot

A sword knot is a type of ribbon or lace, usually taking the form of a loop, that is attached to the hilt of a sword attaching it to the wearer’s wrist. Sword knots can be made from, for example, gold or silver metallic lace, leather or braided cord.

View our sword knots here.