[[quoteright:305:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/dragoon_leader_2066.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:305:The enemy will ''cower'' before [[NapoleonicWars General Ange d'Hautpoul]]'s gold brocade!]]

->'''Merrill''': [[LampshadeHanging Your armor is very shiny, Sebastian. Doesn't that make you an easier target?]]
->'''[[BadassPreacher Seba]][[PrinceCharming stian]]''': [[ChurchMilitant The Light of the Maker is my armor, Merrill. I am not afraid.]]
->'''Merrill''': [[DeadpanSnarker Maybe you could ask Him to make His Light less shiny? Then you wouldn't need as much armor.]]
-->-- ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII''

->''In time of war it suits the enemy to aim his guns at adorned shields, ornaments, silver and gold cloaks, silk shirts and all similar things. [[DefiedTrope Whether one possesses a jacket or not, it is best to wear a narrow-sleeved shirt with faded colours.]]''
-->-- Haile Selassie, former Emperor of Ethiopia

You've just entered your country's military force. And everyone seems to have great dress uniforms. Really fancy, with actual silk and gold.

What? Those are ''combat'' uniforms?

Yes, some fiction has characters wearing combat uniforms that are more appropriate for dress uniforms.

Okay, history does make this TruthInTelevision, like the Prussian military uniforms, but in combat it still counts as an ImpracticallyFancyOutfit. But they look nice, so artists love to use them whenever they can, especially in {{anime}}, {{manga}}, and VideoGames. (And not to mention paintings and relief scultures, this trope is very much OlderThanDirt!) The design of the clothes determines if it falls into ImpracticallyFancyOutfit or ImpossiblyCoolClothes.

In literary genres, where we do not actually get to look at them, these are generally the mark of [[BlueBlood aristocrats]], the MilesGloriosus, the ArmchairMilitary, and the GloryHound. On the other hand, the serious soldiers are more practical and drably dressed, and certainly regard looking splendid as a much lower priority. Only their dress uniforms embody the trope -- if then.

Their personal weapons may or may not involve BlingBlingBang. The [[NiceHat hat]] is often a CommissarCap. Officers and senior enlisted may carry some [[StaffOfAuthority stick or baton indicating their rank]], and expect their [[ChestOfMedals chests to be covered in various jangling medals]]. Futuristic settings can even have PoweredArmor or HumongousMecha in this style.

This can overlap with ImpossiblyTackyClothes, when the work is making a TakeThat to this trope, or dealing with cases where the uniforms are purely for showing off wealth rather than conveying a kind of aristocratic dignity. Historically many successful mercenaries have tended to dress in elaborate and expensive ways, given that this was one of the few reliable status symbols they could spend their money on, and such get-ups are much more likely to be regarded as tacky and unsophisticated.

A sub trope is one where an individual disdains the awarding of such medals and ribbons and refuses to wear them. This is always an indicator that the person in question is a real badass, especially in comparison to a villain (who will usually play this trope straight).

There is a surprising degree of TruthInTelevision and even FridgeLogic in this. Note that in real life, Uniform Regulations are serious business, and in many militaries it is an offence not to wear what a person is authorised to do so. [[note]]"authorised" here meaning "you WILL wear it" not "you may wear it".[[/note]] Also, as the RealLife section notes, from ancient times to even recent history this trope was the standard for high ranking military officiers. This was partly out of pride, but also because a highly decorated commander does tend to bolster his men's confidence, and makes a trusted commander easy to locate and rally to in battle. The fact that this makes it easy for snipers to figure out who to shoot at is making even this a DiscreditedTrope, however, and instead [[TimeMarchesOn turning it into]] a sign of SuicidalOverconfidence in a commander. While modern uniforms tend to be more subtle, the stylishness and tailored fit of uniforms is still considered, as this can be a powerful MagicFeather. Looking in the mirror, the wearer sees a good looking soldier. They wouldn't go to that much trouble making a nice uniform only to send the wearer on a suicide mission. Maybe he does stand a chance of [[BecomingTheBoast pulling of that stuff he bragged about wanting to do in boot camp]].

A SubTrope of CostumePorn.

Compare ErmineCapeEffect, CostumePorn, PimpedOutDress, StylishProtectionGear, HighlyConspicuousUniform, GoldMakesEverythingShiny, KickingAssInAllHerFinery.

See also CustomUniform, ModestRoyalty.
----
!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''LastExile'' does reserve them for officers.
* As just about all the ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'' shows.
** There are even a few HumongousMecha examples from ''Gundam'', like [[http://www.mahq.net/mecha/gundam/msv/ms-06f-dozle.htm Dozle Zabi's Zaku II]] or [[http://www.mahq.net/mecha/gundam/msv/ms-07b-mquve.htm M'Quve's Gouf]]. Taken to an extreme with the [[http://www.mahq.net/mecha/gundam/gihrensgreed/ma-08s.htm Zabi Family Custom Big Zam]], which is basically a [[http://www.mahq.net/mecha/gundam/msgundam/ma-08.htm Big Zam]] with the same gold etching as Dozle's Zaku.
*** However, it should be noted that these are not actual combat models but more of a ceremonial design. It also did not appear in any of the anime or manga, just AllThereInTheManual.
** There is also the higher-ranking officers of [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamUnicorn "The Sleeves"]] that have the nice uniforms and rather decorative embellishments on their mobile suits, [[http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4060/4444044172_3d565b6220_o.jpg especially]] the [[http://moetron.com/newimages/20090408_sinanju.jpg Sinanju]].
*** This is what you get if you have lots of gold but no one willing to sell you actual military supplies.
** Subverted with the Hyaku Shiki from ''Anime/MobileSuitZetaGundam'' and the Akatsuki from ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEEDDestiny''. Both are painted in brilliant gold (in fact, the Hyaku Shiki is the trend setter for gold mobile suits in ''Gundam''), but there are good reasons behind their colors. The Hyaku Shiki's scheme is a result of being covered in Anti-Beam Coating, as well as acting as a [[DidYouJustFlipOffCthulhu middle finger]] to the Titans (i.e. [[MCHammer try and touch this]]), made possible through [[RedBaron "Quattro Bajeena"]] being the pilot. Meanwhile, the Akatsuki takes its predecessor's special feature UpToEleven, in that its gold armor is actually an advanced beam reflection system.
** ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam00'' has the mobile armor Alvatore; its gold plating may be plain compared to the aforementioned designs from the other series, but it also has lavish pop-up window designs in its cockpit viewscreens! Also, it has been noted that [[spoiler:the Alvatore's mobile suit component, the Alvaaron, has the Corner family crest on its chest. Strangely it does not show on any of its depictions]].
* The Black Order uniforms from ''DGrayMan''. Fanciness partially justified though, as the Exorcists intentionally make themselves targets.
* The Britannian military in ''CodeGeass'' probably counts -- [[LadyOfWar Cornelia]] and the [[PraetorianGuard Knights of Rounds]]' uniforms in particular. To be fair, though, most of the time they fight inside mecha, and wear appropriate suits while doing so. Footsoldiers have appropriately helpful attire.
* [[SuzumiyaHaruhi Haruhi and the SOS-Brigade]] wore [[http://randomc.animeblogger.net/image/Suzumiya%20Haruhi/Suzumiya%20Haruhi%20-%2011%20-%20Large%2022.jpg those]] in the DeepImmersionGaming scenes of "Day Of Sagittarius". Fancy!
** That's relatively tame for the high-ranked naval officers they were played as. On the other hand, it would still be more practical to wear a spacesuit, battle damage and all.
* The Headliners of ''TheFiveStarStories'' wear fairly elaborate costumes, unsurprising considering the manga is basically Mamoru Nagano's giant love letter to [[BlingBlingBang weaponized bling]]. No as crazy as some of the other examples, though as the Headdliners mainly serve as pilots for HumongousMecha. The ordinary ground troops typically wear more sensible uniforms with design elements borrowed from recent real-life military gear.
** The [[HumongousMecha Mortar Headds]] [[http://www.gearsonline.net/series/fivestarstories/mh/kog/calvary1.jpg themselves]] also fit this trope to a T.
** In his and (of all people) KunihikoIkuhara's collaborative two-volume light novel ''Schell Bullet'', however, his love of bling manifested itself rather more spectacularly (it helps when your co-author is also a fashion model). Junior Navy officers wearing ''capes'' as a part of an everyday uniform? Infantry grunts with an Italian Renaissance-inspired headgear? ''Quilted'' body armor? True, modern body armor has quilted layers, but they are usually concealed, as quilts present a weak points. Knee-high boots? Two-inch heels (for ''men'', mind you)? What are you smoking, man, really?
* Averted -- barely -- in ''TrinityBlood'', by virtue of the fact that the members of the AX are not ''technically'' soldiers (although they ''are'' a ''para''military organization. Some of the female members of the team might better qualify as wearing [[ImpracticallyFancyOutfit Impractically Fancy Habits]] (see also NunsAreMikos and GirlsWithGuns).
* In ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'', even the lowliest foot soldier apparently gets outfitted with one of those snazzy uniforms, and they're not just for show -- in [[Anime/FullMetalAlchemist the 2003 anime adaptation]], we see Amestris soldiers going into ''battle'' wearing them.
* What about France from ''Manga/AxisPowersHetalia''? Even his own allies tell him "you're too flashy, moron!"
** This is TruthInTelevision. There's a reason the pretty red and blue colors were changed into something more drab during the course of UsefulNotes/WorldWarI...
** BlingOfWar + NiceHat + MaskPower + a ''kilij'' scimitar = Turkey.
* Apparently the guiding principle of TheEmpire in ''LegendOfTheGalacticHeroes''; its highest-ranking admirals sport full capes (in unique colors!) and field marshals' batons.
** Their insignia is literally ''embroidered'' on the uniforms. In ''real silver thread''. It goes from rather simple patterns for junior officers to the ornate tapestries just short of the flak vest for admirals. You see, the Empire really dug that ceremony thing.
* Just about every important military character in ''GlassFleet'', though Michel and Vetti's are the most noticeable. Justified in that ''GlassFleet'' is the French Revolution [[RecycledInSpace in space!]]
* Not exactly war, but ''Anime/RevolutionaryGirlUtena'' clearly has this in mind with the duelist outfits. Hell, half of the time Anthy uses her powers is to add frills and tassels to Utena's CustomUniform and [[RuleOfCool just generally make her look more awesome]].
* In line with historical practice around the time of the French Revolution, ''RoseOfVersailles'' features some fancy uniforms, especially on the lead character. Even the 'dregs of the army' (the French Guard, which Oscar commands at the end of the series) gets their share of bling.
** Also features in the sequel ''Eikou no Napoleon: Eroica''. It backfires spectacularly on the Mamluks, the most blinged one by virtue of wearing large amounts of gold jewels when going at war, when Napoleon tells his men that, just for once, he'll recognize their right of [[RapePillageAndBurn sacking]] and ''why'' the Mamluks are so shiny. [[CurbStompBattle The Battle of the Pyramids ends in a French triumph]].
* Somewhat justified in ''Manga/OnePiece''. A lot of the really blinged out Marines in the series have Devil Fruit powers which turn both them and their clothes into some kind of element. The one that doesn't, Sengoku, drops the bling when using his powers (though said [[LivingStatue powers]] provide [[UpToEleven a whole different bling]]).
* Played both straight and subverted among the [[MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha Time-Space Administration Bureau]] aces and specialists. While their [[CustomUniform personal]] [[InstantArmor Barrier]] [[PoweredArmor Jacket]] occasionally has blings, frills or [[SpikesOfVillainy spikes]], they also have modestly designed regular military uniforms.
* Takuto from ''Anime/StarDriver'' really knows how to dress in combat, as demonstrated [[http://images.wikia.com/stardriver/images/archive/9/91/20101025014849!STAR_DRIVER_Kagayaki_no_Takuto_-_01_-_Large_24.jpg here]]. Please note, that's not an exaggeration, that's ''really'' what he wears during combat.
* In ''Manga/GhostInTheShellArise'' Batou's [[ForcedIntoTheirSundayBest JMSDF dress uniform]] [[http://mangapark.com/manga/ghost-in-the-shell-arise/s2/c6/22 looks significantly more blingy]] than the Major's JGSDF one, though the latter probably just didn't go all the way (like [[TheStarscream Kurtz]] with her AbsoluteCleavage).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* ''Film/{{Thor}}'': Loki's green-and-gold armour is magnificent to behold. It's more stylish than Thor's or Odin's, which is not surprising considering that Loki is a master of deception, so appearances are important to him.
* ''Squaring the Circle'', the [[BasedOnATrueStory true]] story of the Polish uprising of the 1980s, had a Polish general trying on an ornate dress uniform and asking his secretary, "Do you think it looks too... South American?"
* Most of the ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'' movies featured a ''relatively'' restrained form of this, a tailored and padded maroon-and-black uniform with gold and silver insignia, adding up to a vaguely nineteenth-century look. Again, this wasn't handled too crazily -- enlisted personnel wear an eminently functional jumpsuit, Starfleet is overwhelmingly a "[[SpaceIsAnOcean naval]]" force, and the few times we see ''authorized'' ground combat, officers exchange the heavy, stiff jackets for a black sweater similar to some RealLife military cold-weather gear (specifically, the [[TheyChangedItNowItSucks much-missed]] "woolly pully" of the British Army). In an amusing postscript, ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' reveals that the "monster maroons" lasted for over seventy years, while most Starfleet uniform designs are only in service for ten to twenty. Perhaps they were good for pulling {{Green Skinned Space Babe}}s?
** TOS' dress uniforms are in the three primary colors but lavishly trimmed with gold braid and cute little triangular decoration ribbons for extra bling.
** Averted in ''Film/StarTrekIntoDarkness''. Starfleet's dress uniforms are simple and utilitarian; even their rank insignia has a matte finish. The closest they get to bling are the black uniforms and sky blue sashes of the honor guard.
* Parodied in the Three Stooges short "You Nazty Spy!" where Curly, playing Field Marshal Gallstone, is covered in medals, including one on the back of his pants.
* Just before the Battle of Cowpens in ''ThePatriot'', the French Major Villeneuve puts on his elaborate white, sky blue and gold uniform (which we had never seen before). Benjamin Martin gives him a look, and Major Villeneuve says, "If I die, I will die well-dressed."
* In Sergey Bondarchuk's ''{{Waterloo}}'' (1970), we see only the flashiest-dressed troops, including Polish Lancers of the Guard, carabiners and Prussian cavalrymen, even though their historical presence in the campaign was smaller or non-existent at the actual battle.
* In ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', Deputy Commissioner Foley wears his full dress uniform while leading the police charge against Bane's forces.
* In TheAlamo (2004) Davy Crockett lampshades this aspect of Santa Anna at one point, calling him a peacock.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* ''Literature/TheSongOfRoland'' features golden armor, a trope as old as ''Literature/TheIliad''. Where the Roland poet goes above and beyond, though, is when Moorish lords charge into battle ''in golden helmets encrusted in gems and decorated in flowers'', both of which go rolling to the ground with each sword blow to the head. Roland also carries a gilded and bejeweled horn, Oliphant.
* While more subdued and practical that most, ''Literature/HonorHarrington'''s Manticoran naval uniforms (especially officers' ones) still have more than enough gold braid, buttons and other bling for others [[LampshadeHanging to comment on]] in the books themselves. Havenites' uniforms were (in contrast to Manticoran black and gold), rather nondescript grey, and those of Grayson were copies of modern US Air Force blues. None of these, however, are worn in an actual combat situation outside of unforeseen events, with the standard uniform being [[LatexSpacesuit skinsuits]].
* In ''Going Under'', the third book of Justina Robson's ''QuantumGravity'' series, the protagonist Lila Black is given a set of tailored combat armor from a famous demonic fashion designer. The description in the book must be read to be believed, but it features every color in the rainbow, lots of intricate decorations, magical amulets covering every surface, and a stylishly form-fitting bodice.
* While the majority of [[TheEmpire Imperial]] [[PuttingOnTheReich officer uniforms]] look like [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ImpVeers.jpg this guy]], with a few more colors and some different rank cylinders, the Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse introduced the Grand Admirals, whose gear is... [[http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Image:Vadergrandadmirals.jpg a bit fancier]]. The most infamous of them, [[TheThrawnTrilogy Thrawn]], apparently preferred this uniform without the epaulettes and fancy trim, at least when he wasn't in the Emperor's presence.
** As of the XWingSeries, pilots endlessly complain about their [[http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/starwars/images/4/46/Fel-Wedge.jpg dress uniform]], which was designed without actually consulting the pilots. It's actually agreeable enough as an outfit, but the lack of decent pockets and the fact that it shows off any excess body weight -- pilots being image-conscious -- are detriments to its wearers.
** ''Darksaber'' featured one Imperial warlord who had so many medals (some likely concocted for prestige) that he cobbled them together into a makeshift dagger. He still died.
* In ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' before the final battle at Chichen Itza, Lea fulfils the tradition of Faerie Godmothers creating magnificent CostumePorn clothes. As she says, she 'never got the chance to indulge'. She and Susan dress Harry up in all sorts of things, but settle on a gold embossed magically enhanced suit of conquistador armour. He complains that he looks like the Games Workshop version of a Jedi Knight. It's still awesome.
** Susan has a magical costume which seems to be a wry nod to the habit of female heroes armour being more for FanService than practicality. Sure it's sexy - as Sanya remarks on seeing her, 'sometimes I love this job' - but Lea shows its effectiveness by having her servant shoot Susan. The bullet is flattened and Susan doesn't even feel it. It also lets her turn invisible at will.
* In Creator/DanAbnett's Literature/GauntsGhosts novel ''His Last Command'', the Dev Hetra, being NewMeat and {{Blue Blood}}s, are very fancifully dressed. They in fact scorn Ludd because his clothing is rumpled after running over a battlefield to reach them.
** Earlier in the series, contrasting the Ghosts' uniforms to those of [[BlueBlood aristocratic]] units always shows the Ghosts' as more subdued. (Better for subterfuge at any rate.) Conversely, one mark that they can integrate with the Belladon soldiers is that the Belladons take their advice about darkening their insignia so it doesn't show up on the battlefield.
** Also, the first novel features a regiment with very shiny armor, that can be made unshiny when required.
* In JamesSwallow's ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' Literature/BloodAngels novel ''Red Fury'', when the Blood Angels and Flesh Tearers meet, one of the Blood Angels suspects that -- with the Flesh Tearers' unadorned power armor and the gold filigree, rubies, votive chains and other adornment on the Blood Angels' -- the Flesh Tearers take them for peacocks.
* The Literature/InheritanceCycle has Fadawar, who wears golden armour, although this may simply be a ceremonial dress uniform (although, it says a lot for his strength that he can walk about in it).
* Averted in the Literature/{{Lensman}} novels. Most of the Galactic Patrol wears flashy dress uniforms, but the uniform of an Unattached Lensman is plain gray leather with no ornamentation at all.
* Ras the Exhorter in Literature/InvisibleMan applies this trope heavily after becoming [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Ras the Destroyer]], though rather than using gold and such, he wears "the costume of an Abyssinian chieftain." The narrator mocks him for it, but at least the spear comes in handy.
* In LoisMcMasterBujold's ''Literature/VorkosiganSaga'', combat takes place in the normal spacesuit/armored suit, but the noncombat uniforms are impressive. Barrayar has "undress greens" (typical daily wear), "dress greens" (fancier, for formal occasions such as parties or weddings), and most formal of all, "parade red-and-blues" (for major governmental functions such as the Emperor's Birthday; high collar, tall boots, and ''two'' ceremonial swords). Plus, Vor are allowed to wear their medals with their House colors. In ''Memory'', MilesVorkosigan, off to talk to the Emperor, pulls out all of his medals and puts them on with his House colors, for effectively the first time. Even he hadn't realized what a collection he had. (The Emperor's reaction upon seeing him: "Good God".)
** The "House colors" are a riot. Sixty districts, each with a different pair of heraldic colors, and wearing them at major occasions. Vorkosigans are lucky, with a restrained brown and silver, and some (such as the Vorpatril blue and gold) are bona-fide impressive, but some...
--->'''Kareen''': How do you think you'd look in a House cadet's uniform of chartreuse and scarlet, like poor Vorharopulos, Mark?\\
'''Mark''': Like a traffic signal in boots.
* In Creator/EdgarRiceBurroughs's ''[[Literature/JohnCarterOfMars The Chessmen of Mars]]'', Tara says of the warriors of Gathol, "You fight in platinum and diamonds?" and while Gahan of Gathol does his best, she is left less than impressed; he must [[KingIncognito disguise himself]] as a mercenary in plain clothing to win her favor.
* Commander Vimes of ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' fame hates this trope; he refers to it as "Gilt by association." The "traditional" uniforms for the Commander of the Watch and the Duke of Ankh-Morpork, His Grace Sir Samuel Vimes [[OverlyLongGag (Blackboard Monitor)]] are shiny and feathered and have tights; there is basically nothing in that description that he does not object to. He put his foot down about the tights and the feathers in the end, thankfully, but still has to put up with shiny armour with knobbly bits that would probably be worth Sweet Fanny Adams in actual combat.
** ''Discworld/{{Jingo}}'' has him saying to his butler "And into this land of sand-colored dust and sand-colored rocks and [[ShapedLikeItself sand-colored sand]] you, Willikins, will march with your red and white uniform? And you don't see anything wrong with this?"
* In Neil Rutledge's TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} story ''Small Cog'' -- played with, with enthusiasm. The forces were on a ceremonial duty when the attack came. On one hand, this let them get to their current position in time to defend. On the other hand, they were in ceremonial uniforms. The colonel is ''not'' pleased with the latter fact.
* As a subversion, in David Gunn's ''Literature/TheAux'' series, uniforms in Sven's regiment get ''less'' bling as rank increases.
* Subverted in the second book of ''TheBartimaeusTrilogy'', where Bartimaeus points out that "as a rough rule of thumb, the jazzier the uniform, the less powerful the army."
* Also subverted in Robert Heinlein's Literature/SpaceCadet. Both cadets and officers in the Patrol wear extremely plain uniforms. Heinlein briefly discusses the psychology behind plain and jazzy uniforms.
* Wealthy knights in ''ASongOfIceAndFire'' love to wear extremely ornate armor, especially during jousts, but often into actual battle as well. Various knights wear gem-encrusted breastplates, laquered armor, fancy capes and so forth. Even knights without money to burn will get themselves sculpted helmets. Particular examples include:
** When Jaime Lannister competes in tourneys, his armor is covered in gold from head to toe, and he carries a gilded sword. He also occasionally wears a golden helm shaped like a lion's head.
** When riding into battle, Tywin wears a greatcloak made of several layers of cloth-of-gold, large enough to entirely cover his horse's hindquarters and so heavy the breeze doesn't even stir it when galloping. It's held by a pair of solid gold lionesses with rubies for eyes. His helmet is also gold, shaped like an entire lion with ruby eyes. His armour is enamelled in red with elaborate gold inlay, gold rondels in the shape of sunbursts, and golden buckles. All of his weapons have solid gold lions on the hilt. Not surprisingly, he doesn't expect to do any fighting, though he does lead his reserve guard into battle personally against Roose Bolton's host.
** Loras Tyrell wears armour covered in silver, filigreed with black vines and blue forget-me-nots made out of sapphires. He once wears a cape woven with forget-me-nots. His horse also gets a woven flower cape -- red and white roses, which he hands out to pretty girls between jousts.
** Renly Baratheon wears armour enamelled in forest green, and a green helm with two feet of solid gold antlers attached to it.
** Rhaeger Targaryen went to war in black plate armour with a three-headed dragon made of rubies on his chest. When he died, a large number of the rubies fell into the river, which is later named Ruby ford, and people have been scavenging for them ever since.
** Several mercenary companies that join in the siege on Meereen feature this. One company is made up of mercenaries who wear all their worldly wealth in clothing and armor, and as such are usually too overburdened to fight properly.
** Then we have [[BadassGrandpa "Bronze" Yohn Royce]], noted for wearing an ancient suit of bronze armor. This normally wouldn't stand up to the steel armor and weapons used by those he face in battle, except it's apparently inscribed with magical runes that wards the wearer from harm, making it not only more fancy but also practical. His sons Andar and Robar in contrast wear silver-colored armor with bronze runes.
* In the ''Literature/{{RCN}}'' series, when Daniel Leary wears his Dress Whites with ''all'' decorations, including the gaudy ones from friendly foreign worlds, he comments that he feels like a clown. But it impresses pretty girls and civilians in general -- as well as anyone who knows what he did to earn those awards.
* Deconstructed in ''Literature/TheBelgariad''. Ce'Nedra leads an army into battle wearing a suit of armor made entirely of pure gold but knows exactly how impractical it is in an actual fight. She uses it entirely to serve as an inspirational figure to bolster the troops morale.
** [[AxeCrazy Taur]] [[TheBrute Urgas]], [[TheCaligula King of Cthol Murgos]], dips his (steel) chainmail in molten gold. Since Angarak gold is blood red in colour, this actually serves to make him look [[TheBerserker even more frightening]] rather than pretty.
* Also deconstructed in ''TheElenium'' by the same author. Martel, who has been TheDragon for the entire trilogy, gets a fancy suit of gold-embossed armor in the third book. In the penultimate battle, the weight of the armor slows him down, which gets him killed. (Although it isn't the gold particularly; that particular style of armor was established as ''always'' being much heavier than most countries' plate mail, and among the best protection in the world. You still need to spend years building muscle to move in it properly.)
* The ''Literature/SPQR'' novel ''Nobody Loves a Centurian'' gives an avid CostumePorn description of the protagonist Decius putting on his Roman officer's uniform, complete with an anatomically correct breastplate and a push-broom helmet. After he finishes, another officer arrives with the message that their commanding officer wants everyone to wear their combat uniforms to the meeting instead. There's no time to change, and everyone has a good laugh at Decius's expense.
* Alanna the Lioness of the ''Literature/TortallUniverse'' has a set of gold plate armor studded with amethysts. It's still practical because it's gold wash over steel and she can fight in it just fine, but she does save it for special occasions.
* Lampshaded in the third book of Literature/TheSwordOfTruth series, where a commander of an army with red capes and shining weapons catches derogatory stares from another force, and notes that usually, such things ''are'' nothing more that a BlingOfWar, but in his case, it is a sign of discipline. His army does lose to the other in the end, but they fight well enough for the surrendering soldiers to be accepted into the enemy forces.
* ''Literature/TheReynardCycle'':The great lords of Arcasia are depicted as riding into battle wearing ornate armor that relies heavily on AnimalMotifs. The Calvarians, being more practical, eschew this, though their uniforms are still described as being rather sharp.
* The Twelfth Legion of ''Literature/TheHeroesOfOlympus'' wear solid gold armor. However, it is Imperial gold, which is lighter and harder than steel and powerfully magical.
* Somewhat more understated in Literature/TolkiensLegendarium, but still present. The armor worn by the Dwarves and Bilbo in ''Literature/TheHobbit'' is made in part or entirely of ''mithril'', with gold and gems (and in fact, ''mithril'' is widely used in ''any'' war-gear of Dwarven and even Elven make), and even the helms of the Tower Guard in ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'' are made using ''mithril''. The armies of the Noldor in particular are noted for this (it helps that the High King at the beginnings of their trouble with Morgoth in Valinor may have been the greatest smith the world had ever known). The Rohirrim, having been inspired by the UsefulNotes/AngloSaxons, often use gold on their armor, helms, shields and sword-hilts. Gold is also used by the Southrons and Easterlings in Sauron's armies. Scabbards (such as Andúril's) and other fittings are also often fit with precious metals and gems.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* The Jaffa on ''Series/StargateSG1''. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] when an actor on ShowWithinAShow ''Wormhole Extreme'' asked why the good guys wore camouflage but the bad guys didn't. O'Neill's response: "Maybe that's why they're dead."
** A few episodes later in the series, it was specifically noted that Jaffa weapons and armor are designed more for psychological intimidation than actual effectiveness, the better to cow primitive populations into accepting their new "gods". If you're trying to impress people, you don't ''want'' to hide your troops with camo...
** Also worth noting is that their uniforms were armor effective against just about anything they'd face short of their own weapons (steel plates and chain mail will stop most bladed weapons that resisting peasants will have). When they first came to Earth in the pilot, small arms fire just bounced off -- one Jaffa ''was'' killed, but that was after a considerable amount of gunfire. It wasn't until the SGC became a recognized defensive asset that needed better weapons and got them that the armor became obsolete.
*** Those were Serpent Guards, not Jaffa, those guys are elite troops and thus get the best armour.
* The Centauri in ''Series/BabylonFive'': sort of Roman meets Napoleonic. Initially you think that those are just the palace guards, but then some guy on a ''covert mission'' to grab G'Kar shows up dressed like that...
** In a later mission they wore obscuring robes to hide their identity. They were found out because they had the full uniform, including unit insignia, underneath.
** The human officers on B5 have fancy grey dress uniforms with braid on the shoulders for ceremonial occasions, and boring blue-and-brown uniforms for everyday use. However, when B5 [[spoiler:breaks away from Earth Alliance]] and Delenn produces spiffy new black uniforms for everybody, those uniforms appear to be used for both dress and combat... though, to be fair, it would be asking a lot of poor Delenn to supply two separate uniform designs on such short notice.
*** The separatist uniforms are an aversion, as they aren't inherently impractical for what the characters are doing.
*** Though we do find out in a later episode that each of these uniforms is meticulously constructed from special materials that, according to Lennier, are a great honor to wear. So it seems that from the Minbari perspective the separatist uniforms are still very much BlingOfWar. It's just that the Minbari idea of BlingOfWar is very subdued.
*** We also see in "Gropos" that Earth Force has a dedicated [[SpaceMarine marine corps]] used for ground-based combat. Their uniforms are a functional olive-green. And even their commander, Gen. Franklin, exchanges his dressier uniform for a more cover-friendly green outfit while his forces are engaged in combat. In other episodes we also see that B5 security has an all-black SWAT-style uniform they use for more dangerous situations.
** Minbari have robes and carve their headbones according to a system of heraldry associated with their culture(which justifies Delenn's headbone looking like a circlet). Delenn has really fancy robes and being the [[ProperLady proper]] LadyOfWar that she is, goes through SpaceBattles [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome without causing a wrinkle]].
* Goldar and Scorpina of ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers'' wear gold-coloured plate mail.
* In ''Series/GameOfThrones'', The Kingsguard uniform is incredibly fancy, in striking contrast to the utilitarian armour worn by the Stark household guard. Lampshaded by Ned Stark, who comments dryly to a member of the King's Guard, "Very handsome armor. Not a scratch on it."
** It's revealed in [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Tp1hbf_y2E this featurette]] that King Renly Baratheon's armour (which included velvet fabric) was the most complicated costume created for the first two seasons of the show.
** Ser Loras Tyrell has even more glorious armor, with small flowery patterns covering every inch of it. Makes sense, given that he's as [[CampGay camp]] as you can be while still being a badass knight.
** Compare the above entry for the source material, ASongOfIceAndFire. The series tuned it down considerably.
* ''StarTrekEnterprise''. In the MirrorUniverse episode, the standard blue jumpsuits of the Enterprise officers are adorned with medals, epaulettes and Sam Browne belts, as Starfleet is [[TheWarOfEarthlyAggression the militant arm of an empire bent on conquest]].
* In Original StarTrek the male MirrorUniverse uniforms aren't that different (except maybe for Kirk's) but the women's uniforms include a bare midrif - and a ceremonial but very effective dagger for any male crewman who crosses the line.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Both played straight and subverted in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}''.
** The Imperium of Man (or should I say [=PIMPerium=]) pretty much defines this trope. See for yourself: [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/mediawiki/images/3/3f/Emperor_VS_Horus.jpg The God Emperor of Mankind]], who might just as well be the avatar of Bling, his own [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/mediawiki/images/8/82/Custodes_terminators.jpg Adeptus Custodes Terminators]], and a [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/mediawiki/images/a/af/Venerable_Dreadnought.jpg Space Marine Venerable Dreadnought]], which is basically enshrinement taken literally. The {{SpaceMarine}}s and Grey Knights have all kind of skulls, eagles and junk on their PoweredArmor. Supposedly, some of them are "blessed" to be useful. And the [[EvilCounterpart Chaos Space Marines]] [[SpikesOfVillainy seem to have a spike fetish]], but they kinda use them, at least. Sanguinius excels all others in this respect as he is described in the Horus Heresy series, wearing his fancy armour with a web of jewelled chains on his head and [[WingedHumanoid wings]].
**** At first glance, the model of Ultramarines Second Company Captain Cato Sicarius makes you think, "Wow, that's a lot of bling, looks pretty gaudy to me." Then you read his fluff, and you realize that ''he earned every single piece of that bling on the battlefield.'' Then suddenly his bling is less gaudy and more ''badass.''
**** Parodied with Marneus Calgar of Ultramarines aka [[FanNickname Papa Smurf]], the biggest pimp in the galaxy as can be seen [[http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Marneus_Calgar here]].
** With the Imperial Guard, it tends to be a mishmash. Take the Cadians for example. They wear practical body armour in camouflage colours, and tend to resemble contemporary soldiers. But they're quite likely to be fighting alongside a chap looking like [[http://www.games-workshop.com/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m2510144_99060105261_IGLordCommissar_873x627.jpg this]] or [[http://www.games-workshop.com/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m1241869_99060105222_IGEnginseer1main_445x319.jpg this]].
*** Don't forget [[http://www.games-workshop.com/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m1440155_99060105135_lordsolarmacharius_873x627.jpg Lord Solar Macharius]].
** Done by the Mordian Iron Guard regiment, who wear fantastically gaudy dress uniforms into war. Many enemies have been fatally surprised to discover that the flashy uniforms are being worn by fiercely disciplined and competent soldiers. The concepts of coloured uniforms helping morale similar to their use in Napoleanic Warfare's smoky battlefields likely applies to the Mordians as well, amplified by them frequently fighting [[BrownNote the bowel-voidingly disturbing forces of Chaos]] and how the side of the planet Mordia everyone lives on (the other side being burning and over-lit) is without sunlight.
** It's not limited to armor either: Commissar Yarrick owns a pimped-up [[TankGoodness Baneblade]] called the [[AceCustom Fortress of Arrogance]].
*** Then people try to [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gTkB1dNnfY surpass it]]...
** The Imperium as a whole has a tendency to try and make anything bigger than a jetbike resemble a cathedral. And we're not talking about a subtle, restrained cathedral here, [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Emperor_Titan it's the full Notre Dame effect]].
** Orks bling it up, too. It's just that instead of skull moldings and gold, they go for...skulls. And helmets. On sticks. As a way of honoring a worthy opponent.
*** Of course, defined by the Bad Moons clan, and the Flash Gitz in particular, who believe the richer and flashier they are, the more powerful they are. They even have their gretchin talk big about them just to make other, less fortunate orks jealous. Of course, instead of rising to any kind of position of power in their clans, they instead get booted out for being too self-absorbed in their wealth. They usually end up as mercenaries for various xenos species in the galaxy... or as [[SpacePirates Korsairs]].
*** Imperial BlingOfWar works against humans when fighting orks: since to the LargeAndInCharge-following orks, all humans are the same size, they figure the 'umiez solve the "who's in charge" problem by giving their leaders bigger and awesomer hats (which is true to an extent). Which is why many a CommissarCap has been removed from its owner's head (and the head from the body as well) to be put on an ork warboss as a symbol of authority.
** Eldar are mostly relatively restrained, just going for functional bling like magic gems that increase their magic power, but Eldrad goes a bit over the top.
*** Well, [[http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh19/Mordheimer/40k%20Motivational%20Posters/40kEldar.jpg sometimes]], at least.
*** Eldar can go either way largely because each of their Aspect Warrior castes have specific uniforms. This ranges from the dark and intimidating [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Dark_Reaper Dark Reapers]] who seem to be aiming for a "Death in armour with a missile launcher" look; right the way up to the [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Fire_Dragon Fire Dragons]] who, true to their name, wear bright orange armour with yellow helmets. Special characters, as so often happens, [[UpToEleven turn this way up]]; [[http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Asurmen Asurmen]] being a great example with blue and gold armour, an enormous red helmet with a crest and a huge flag on his back.
*** Eldar always go into battle with spirit stones, which are small gems that are made to capture the souls of the Eldar when they are killed so they can be retrieved later. Otherwise their souls will end up in the warp where it will be devoured by daemons, especially Slaanesh.
** All high level commanders in the 40k universe are guilty of this trope. This is made especially apparent in the DawnOfWar series, particularly in Dark Crusade when your respective commander gains all of the available wargear. That's when they look REALLY fancy.
*** Except Tau, who are more pragmatic and whose commanders look little different from their other [[InstantAwesomeJustAddMecha mecha]], and the [[BugWar Tyranids]], whose commanders' bling is {{Squick}}.
* The Sun Armor artifact from ''{{GURPS}}: Dungeon Fantasy'' glows brightly, is made of orichalcum and decorated to look like a sunrise. But it's as functional as it is gaudy, the cosmic armor cannot be bypassed by anything short of a God.
* In ''{{Exalted}}'', If it is an Solar artifact, It will by blingy, From Power Armor and Weapons to Warstiders and the Solars themself.
** Hell, most armor for the Exalted is pimp as all hell. Solars get the best use out of oricalchum (magical gold), Lunars work best with magically-infused moonsilver, and the Dragon-Blooded get lots of mileage out of jade (which comes in six different colors, no less). The only magical material that isn't automatically suited for bling is starmetal, and that's because it's so hard to obtain that it's used in the most utilitarian of fashions.
* ''MagicTheGathering'' has the plane of Bant, where this is standard dress for soldiers. It's justified in that war in Bant is so heavily tied to a code of honour that no one uses ambushes or sneak attacks - Bant soldiers don't even wear armour on the back of their bodies because no one ever dares to sneak up on them from behind.
* The Glitter Boys from {{Rifts}} have this for a practical reason: The ultra-bright mirror finish of their chrome-plated armour is an unmatched defence against laser weaponry.
** Techno Wizards have armor and weapons that sparkle with various gems, which serve to magically empower them.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Theater]]
* The better to go with all the GorgeousPeriodDress, some productions of ''{{Elisabeth}}'' have this for the male royalty. (Especially Takarazuka productions -- Rudolf looks alarmingly like a Disney Prince. In a good way.)
* In a similar gag to the Three Stooges one above, a production of ''ThePiratesOfPenzance'' had the ModernMajorGeneral bragging about the medals on his chest: "Yes, I got these on the frontier. I had a couple on the back 'ere ''*indicates coattails*'' but they fell off."
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The formal [=SeeD=] uniforms in ''FinalFantasyVIII'' were decorated with brocade, the female version involves a rather impractical-looking skirt, and generally look like what would happen if a member of [[DragonBallZ The Ginyu Force]] traded fashion tips with [[PuttingOnTheReich Hugo Boss]]. The student uniforms, on the other hand, are a practical-looking ensemble that can be best described as combat fatigues crossed with a Japanese school uniform. Of course, it's also worth noting that the uniforms are apparently only worn either on-campus or when necessary to "show the flag," and indeed the protagonists never wear the uniforms at all after two sequences in the beginning.
* The [[http://serenesforest.net/media/tcg/4/fe4-054.jpg enemy]] generals in the Archanea and Jugdral series of Franchise/FireEmblem games often wear a [[http://serenesforest.net/media/tcg/5/fe5-011l.jpg long]] [[http://serenesforest.net/media/tcg/6/fe6-022.jpg extravagant]] [[http://serenesforest.net/media/tcg/4/fe4-053.jpg Black]] BadAssLongCoat complete with a HighCollarOfDoom.
* From the ''VideoGame/CustomRobo'' series, the [[FunWithAcronyms A.I.R.S.]] [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin robo]]. It's an '''A'''rmy-'''I'''ssue '''R'''ay '''S'''ky model, whose specs and equipment have been drastically increased for military use. It is also ''gold-plated from head to toe''.
** Also, the aptly named Carat robo from ''Custom Robo Arena''. It's an enhanced Little Sprinter model with military-grade specs and parts, but extremely gaudy and ''diamond-encrusted''. Something of a subversion though, as it is a RichBitch's custom design for her personal use (see ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney).
* The Nemesis Army in ''CityOfHeroes'' work for a 200-year-old MadScientist, and dress like they're about to fight [[NapoleonBonaparte Napoleon]]. With their blunderbuss-like (but ''very'' effective) rifles and bright-colored uniforms, the fans have nicknamed them "The Marching Band from Hell".
* [[http://www.morrowind.de/items/armor/mw_08B.jpg The Imperial Legion's armour]] in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind''. You really can understand why they tuned it down for ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]''.
** The scary part: that's the ''grunt's'' uniform. Higher ranking soldiers have an even fancier getup, while the leader wears the Lord's Mail, a rather tricked-out breastplate originally worn by a founder of the Empire, and ''wields a FlamingSword''.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s Legionnaires are genuinely pretty subdued, but some of the city guard outfits are less so, like Bruma's bright yellow. This trope is played ''entirely'' straight, however, by the [[http://uesp.net/wiki/File:OB-npc-Hieronymus_Lex.jpg big pimpin' Watch Captains]] in the Imperial City.
* Lyude from ''BatenKaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean'' is an ambassador connected to the Imperial Army, so he can be somewhat forgiven for his extravagant military-esque outfit and apparently brass-plated gun-horn - although his brother and sister, actual soldiers, have no such excuse.
* Players of ''VideoGame/BattlefieldPlay4Free'' who pre-ordered ''VideoGame/{{Battlefield 3}}'' were rewarded with a fancy beret for one of their player-characters which was unavailable any other way.
* ''VideoGame/BionicCommando: Rearmed'' features the 1st and 2nd division, led by an officer in fancy dress - complete with so many medals that he's bulletproof [[spoiler:from frontal attacks.]]
* The Terran representative from ''Space Empires V''.
* The Imperial Generals of ''VideoGame/ValkyriaChronicles'' wear them in combat; gold trim, cords, epaulettes and an ocean of gold buttons abound. Gallia's military officers wear a much more modest (if not less elaborate) uniform. Imperial Prince Maximilian, while not wearing a uniform, wears an entire suit of elaborately decorative silver plate mail with gold accents, including a golden laurel crown, as part of his garb of station, even when just sitting around.
* King Cailan Theirin from ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'' is decked out in massive ''gold'' armor. Sophia Dryden's armor might count as well, considering how fancy and decorative it looks.
* Sebastian Vael, from ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'''s "''[[ExactlyWhatitSaysontheTin The Exiled Prince]]''" DownloadableContent, is [[PrinceCharming a Pri]][[WarriorPrince nce]] who wears bright white chain-mail with lots of gold. It was custom made for him when [[TheResenter he was shipped off]] to join [[BadassPreacher the clergy]], both [[FormerTeenRebel for being a troublemaker]], and being SpareToTheThrone. His codpiece is a golden emblem of Andraste's face (think Jesus [[JeannedArchetype crossed with Joan of Arc]]).
* Link's Magic Armour in ''[[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess Twilight Princess]]'' features golden armour that requires a constant supply of rupees or it will change to iron and become too heavy to move around in.
* The ''Franchise/MassEffect'' universe is generally pretty restrained (or at least low on the sparkle), but some of the Krogan armour certainly qualifies, especially the [[http://images.wikia.com/masseffect/images/f/fd/Heavy-krogan-Warlord.png Warlord-class]] and [[http://masseffect.wikia.com/wiki/File:Heavy-krogan-Battlemaster.png Battlemaster-class]] lines. A JustifiedTrope in this case - the krogan don't really care about cover, they're naturally incredibly tough, and they certainly want their enemies to [[BloodKnight see them before they die]].
** The [[VideoGame/MassEffect2 sequel]] lets the player wear shiny golden armour, and those lucky folk who pre-ordered got the [[http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20100707061323/masseffect/images/2/22/Terminus_Assault_Armor.jpg Terminus Assault Armour]], whilst those who got ''Franchise/DragonAge'' get the [[http://images.wikia.com/masseffect/images/9/90/Blood_Dragon_Armor.jpg Blood Dragon Armor]].
** The [[LargeAndInCharge Shadow]] [[TheChessmaster Broker]] wears [[spoiler: [[http://masseffect.wikia.com/wiki/Shadow_Broker#Mass_Effect_2 a rather nice suit]]]].
* In ''Spore: Galactic Adventures'' you can design your own captain to play in adventures. The most expensive and powerful armour you can attach to your captain are covered in gold and sparkly gems.
* In ''Minecraft'', you can forge gold armor and weapons, [[RealityEnsues but in a subversion]], they're nearly useless as anything other than a display of wealth, since iron is much easier to find and the resulting equipment is twice as strong.
** Diamonds can also be used to make armor and swords, but unlike gold, anything crafted with diamonds not only looks pretty, but they are also extremely durable, requiring at least over 1000 uses before the tools break.
* Protoss in ''VideoGame/StarCraftII'' suddenly developed a taste for flashy decorations, and that is after they were shown walking around almost naked in ''[[StarCraft Brood War]]''.
** This is actually due to improvements in technology allowing the Zealots' and High Templars' golden body armor to show on their in-game models. The big yellow segments were always present in the original's and BW's concept art.
* While ''GearsOfWar'' is a little too GrimDark to get into this full-tilt, elements appear, especially in the third game. All the Gears have uniforms adorned in strangely useless blue LED lights that serve little point other than to make it impossible to hide in dark corners (particularly odd, since most of the fighting in ''Gears 2'' takes place either underground or in decaying buildings). ''Gears 3'' ups the ante by adding in a whole host of cosmetic weapon skins for multiplayer, including bright pink, [[ColorCodedForYourConvenience a glowing aura in appropriate colors]] (blue for COG, red for Locust) that ''changes appropriately if an enemy picks the weapon up'', and even a liquid metal skin. A few are unlocked by in-game achievements, but most are bought a la carte -- getting all of them costs about $40, 2/3 the price of the ''entire game''.
** The Palace Guards of ''GearsOfWar 3'' play this trope completely straight, having counterintuitively ornate (and heavy) helmets and coats. They're not quite on the level of bling found in most of these examples, but Locust designs tend toward brown, being an underground species.
* While there's a bit of this all over the ''Franchise/AssassinsCreed'' series, Cesare Borgia of the Papal Army is pretty notable. His silver breast-plate has ''cherubs'' embossed all over it.
** The [[EliteMooks Papal Guards]] have some really fancy armor, but not even Cesare's armor can top Ezio's Armor of Brutus.
*** ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRevelations'' takes it UpToEleven. Behold: [[http://images.wikia.com/assassinscreed/images/c/cf/Ottoman_Janissary.png Janissaries]], [[http://www.creativeuncut.com/gallery-19/art/acr-tarik-barleti.jpg their commander]], [[http://images.wikia.com/assassinscreed/images/3/36/Manuel_Palaiologos.png Manuel Palaiologos]], [[http://www.creativeuncut.com/gallery-19/art/acr-shahkulu-renegade.jpg his dragon, Shakulu]], [[http://feedyourconsole.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/ACR_SP_EzioTurkishArmor.jpg Ezio's ultimate armour]], and [[http://media1.gameinformer.com/imagefeed/screenshots/AssassinsCreedRevelations/acr_sp_render_02_ahmet.jpg Prince Ahmet]].
* [[CastlevaniaChroniclesOfSorrow Castlevania: Aria Of Sorrow]] has Joyeuse, a sword made of pure gold. When RealityEnsues the player will notice that being made of gold it's very weak and best for either showing off or being sold.
* VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft justifies this, to an extent, with the [[PowerCrystal gems]] and [[PowerGlows glowy enchantments]] that both add bling and magically increase an item's power.
* Unique armors in ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights2'' fall into this quite a bit.
* Prince Tolten from LostOdyssey is completely kitted out in gold armour (with gold sword). Not only that, the armour is encrusted with ''diamonds''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* The various military forces in ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' are generally practical -- by the standards of the mid-19th century. And they usually include a NiceHat.
** In fact, the Jägermonsters ARE this trope in spades. Originally, in their "generic monster" days, they wore uniforms that actually were uniforms, but it's pretty much unknown these days to see two wearing the same outfit.
* The uniforms worn in ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' are quite modest compared to a lot of these other examples, though they're definitely not camouflaged and the floating epaulets (shaped like stars, lightning bolts, planets, or simple metal plates depending on rank) are kind of conspicuous. Even if the epaulets are concealed grenades (or antimatter bombs in Commander Kevyn Andreyason's case).
* [[http://harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=166 This]] HarkAVagrant illustrates the lack of practicality in this form of battle dress.
* Pturrd's casing in ''Webcomic/SecondEmpire'' is clearly meant to evoke this, as well as his overt GeneralFailure ArmchairMilitary characteristics.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'':
** The standard armour of the Equestrian Royal Guard is a gold suit of plate with a blue-crested helmet, which is more than enough to meet the required levels of fabulousness.
** In "[[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E24EquestriaGames Equestria Games]]".
*** The Crystal Empires' guardsponies can be seen wearing crystalline armour that's [[UpToEleven even shinier]] than that of the normal royal guards.
*** Shining Armor is wearing his ornate captain's armour for the occasion as well.
** At one point in "[[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E25TwilightsKingdomPart1 Twilight's Kingdom, Part 1]]", Discord [[{{Film/Patton}} dons a military uniform decked out with numerous gaudy medals and ribbons and a M1 helmet with four stars on it]], which is made funnier in the next shot when Discord is wearing [=MacArthur's=] iconic sunglasses and corncob pipe.
* According to Groundskeeper Willie in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', the Scottish highlanders donned full-length sequined evening gowns in battle, in order to "blind your opponent with luxury".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* '[[SukhomlinovEffect The side with the best uniforms always loses.]]'
** Unless the nice uniforms are [[TheBritishEmpire bright red and white]]. They might have a fighting chance then.
* Generally averted in modern day military. [[StraightForThecommander Bling attracts snipers]] - therefore field officers do not wear rank insignia nor Sam Browne belts.
* In the age of "gentlemanly" warfare, bright uniforms were used to actually help soldiers stand out amid all the smoke (it wasn't until just over a century ago that smokeless gunpowder was invented). This was actually a morale booster, as soldiers were assured that their fellows were still around amid the chaos. Blingy uniforms could also help to show troops, subordinate officers and couriers where the commanders were to aid in battlefield communication.
* The logical extreme would likely be the uniforms worn by Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, which he had to be ''sewn into'' in order to get the right fit. This fact is often credited as being one of the reasons doctors were unable to save his life after he was shot in 1914.
* Some old-school French units would take their full-dress uniforms into the field in order to put them on (white gloves and all) on the day of a battle. This was most notably the case with Napoleon's Old Guard. Also, some commanders would put on extremely fancy uniforms and often dress their aides-de-camp in specially designed ones. Joachim Murat, one of Napoleon's marshals and king of Naples, was famous for gaudy, brightly coloured get-ups which to some seemed more appropriate for an opera production than the battlefield. With all that bling among his marshals and generals, the best way for Napoleon to stand out was to dress very plainly, usually in an undecorated bicorne hat, an undress uniform and over that a simple grey greatcoat.
* British liaison officers working with the Spanish irregulars would ride around through the war-torn Spanish countryside in full dress uniform so they couldn't be hung as spies (which was their job, mostly making maps). They didn't worry about getting seen because they had really good (and hideously expensive) horses.
* The most extreme example would be Hussar uniforms (the cavalry uniform with the cross-bands on the chest, short fur hat, and jacket on one shoulder). Originally worn by Hungarian units. Everyone copied the look (especially officers) for most of the 19th century, despite being an absolute pain to wear. The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth's winged hussars added wings and leopard skins.
* Apart from their winged hussars, Polish-Lithuanian nobility, who claimed a descent from the ancient Sarmatians, also liked a good scale armour. It was more expensive, heavier, and offered worse protection than regular armour, so it was good only for parades - but it just looked ''so Sarmatian''.
* [[CadreOfForeignBodyguards Swiss mercenaries]] had a reputation so BadAss that they wore outrageously multicolored outfits to make sure everyone on the battlefield knew who they were dealing with. The German landsknechte imitated their fighting style as well as fashion sense. To this day, the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Swiss_Guard-_LobozPics.jpg Swiss Guard]] wear brightly colored uniforms when performing ceremonial duties as the Papal bodyguard. Guardsmen wear more practical uniforms when they are actually working, however.
** The Landsknechte generally tended to exaggerate and embellish their uniforms even more than the Swiss, with massive puffed and slashed sleeves and huge feathered hats becoming common. Landsknechte were generally mercenaries of very low social standing, and their costume was at once an advertisement of how wealthy and successful they had become to prospective employers and two fingers up to the more restrained sartorial tastes of most Europeans of the day. It was deliberately intended to be shocking, garish and outrageous to show how little the Landsknecht cared about social conventions - often to the point of oversized phallic codpieces. Given that they were generally wandering soldiers of fortune, rarely had dependents to support and might die at any time, elaborate clothing was one of the few status symbols they could reliably spend any money they had left over from drinking and whoring on.
* [[PuttingOnTheReich The Nazis]]. Let's face it, despite the notoriety of their deeds, those dudes were '''fashionable'''.
** Small wonder because their uniforms were designed by Hugo Boss.
** Dress uniforms, especially that famous black SS uniforms with lots of leather and silver braid -- yes. But common ''feldgrau'' was usually as ill-fitting, baggy, stained, torn and generally unappealing as most combat fatigues in the world.
*** In practice, the most impressive dress uniforms in terms of bling were those of the ''Kriegsmarine'', out of all arms, due to them sticking to the tradition of the Imperial Navy. An naval officer had at least 2 service dresses (blues / whites), a [[http://uboat.net/media/men/uniforms/daoff.jpg full dress]], a [[http://uboat.net/media/men/uniforms/kzsgrda.jpg parade dress]] (frilliest of them), a walking-out dress for city wear and an [[http://www.hermann-historica.de/auktion/hhm64.pl?f=NR_LOT&c=7178&t=temartic_R_D&db=kat64_3R.txt evening dress uniform]] (which could have also had a lot of decorations and a ceremonial dagger for even more formal events). They subverted the trope by wearing mostly the service dress or civilian jumpers and leather coats aboard ship.
** Averted, interestingly enough, by [[UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler Hitler]] himself, who wore a simple party uniform, in part to portray himself as a man of the people, in part because he had been a lance-corporal in UsefulNotes/WW1. Even though he could cover his chest in medals, he made a point of only wearing what he legitimately won in battle.
** Oh, the uniforms of Reichsmarschall Göring. They couldn't even be called "uniforms" because they, well, [[CustomUniform weren't uniform]]. Perfectly tailored and designed by him, to reflect his unique position, self-aggrandizing titles, and the amount of loot he stole along the way. He also loved medals. His StaffOfAuthority was also superior to the regular officer's [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baton_(symbol) baton]]. There was a joke in Nazi Germany: "What is one gör? It's the maximum amount of metal a man can wear on his chest without tipping over."
*** There's a (possibly apocryphal) anecdote about Göring and Hitler going to inspect ships under construction at a naval yard. Göring arrived first and went aboard a ship; when Hitler showed up the Reichsmarschall put his head through a porthole to watch Hitler's arrival. When Der Führer saw this, he mentioned to an aide, "Now he really has gone too far -- he's hung an entire battleship around his neck!"
*** Regular officers of the Wehrmacht did not carry batons. The baton was the symbol of rank of Field Marshals. Goering, at his own urging, was made Reichsmarshall by Hitler, the only one ever, and thus his baton was gaudier then that of a mere Field Marshal. "Der Dicke" (the Fat One) did love his rank, power, and bling.
** Goring for the record was a WW1 fighter pilot and a legitimately successful one (he was the Red Barons squadron XO). The Luftwaffe under his command achieved several great successes. So, with the caveat, his bling would have been impressive had he just kept the medals he had eearned, but for some reason, he went excessive.
* Golden-Age of Piracy pirates liked to wear their treasure, making it harder to steal. Bartholomew Roberts wandered around with a giant, diamond-studded cross on a chain around his neck.
** Also done by the Mamluk horsemen. This bit them back in the ass at the Battle of the Pyramids: Napoleon's army was tired and demoralized by the long march and being outnumbered, and the only thing Napoleon needed to do to inspire them was to give them permission to plunder (something he usually denied) and point out what they were doing. [[CurbStompBattle The French annihilated the Mamluk army and terrified away their incoming reinforcements]].
* Real-Life Inspiration for the page pic [[http://pro.corbis.com/images/IH179808.jpg?size=67&uid=00FCAED7-74BA-405E-9C92-7CC6A2696DE4 Fleet Admiral Togo Heihachiro]].
* [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/84/Tsar_Nicholas_II_%26_King_George_V.JPG Imperial Russia and Britain]].
* In William Manchester's biography of Douglas MacArthur ''American Caesar'', [=MacArthur=] regularly wore ''all'' of his medals on his uniform, even in combat. Given that this was [=MacArthur=], it was a lot. He only stopped the practice when he learned that General Joseph Stilwell didn't wear ''any'' medals or decorations at all, except for the tiniest rank insignia. Annoyed that Stilwell was showing him up in the "Less is More" department (as well as the Glamour 12-Point Accessory Guide) Mac Arthur soon switched to the minimalist look that he had for the landings at Leyte.
** Except for his hat, which sported, according to Fleet Admiral Bill Halsey (another unpretentious practitioner of the "less is more" school of military dress), "more gold braid than I thought it was possible to put on a hat".
** [[FourStarBadass General George Patton]] started the blingy trend during peacetime training, with his ivory-handled handgun, tailored uniform and his tank in the colors of the American flag, and he proposed for his tank troops a deep green uniform with gilded helmet and buttons (which got rebuked by the press).
* General Winfield Scott ("Old Fuss And Feathers") lost the Whig nomination for President to UsefulNotes/ZacharyTaylor ("Old Rough And Ready") due to an image problem related (in part) to the care taken with his uniform. In fact his clothing alone took up six horse-drawn carriages. General UsefulNotes/UlyssesSGrant, on the other hand, took to the field with the clothes on his back, a hairbrush and a toothbrush.
* Leonid Brezhnev was so fond of the BlingOfWar that he awarded himself loads of improbable awards, including UsefulNotes/WorldWarII awards as late as the 1970s (including the Order of Victory, a diamond-and-ruby affair awarded only in the single-digit range to a few top commanders, which Brezhnev could hardly count himself among), and the coveted Hero of the Soviet Union and Hero of Socialist Labour awards for such momentous achievements as his birthday (Brezhnev was one of only two individuals -- the other being Marshal Zhukov, the conqueror of Berlin -- to receive four Hero of the Soviet Union medals). This eventually got to the point where a [[RussianHumor a common Soviet joke of the era]] was about Brezhnev needing chest expansion surgery to accommodate an ever-increasing number of medals. After his death, a number of award regulations were changed to specifically exclude the awards being granted for things such as birthdays, and his Order of Victory was outright revoked.
* Idi Amin, who, like Brezhnev, had to have the length of his tunics extended to accommodate his absurdly large collection of awards.
* NapoleonBonaparte: [[http://www.military-quotes.com/Napoleon.htm "A soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon."]].
* {{Samurai}} armor and helmets. Some examples can be seen [[http://www.metmuseum.org/collections/galleries/arms-and-armor/377 here]]. The extravagant ones all come from the Edo period -- with its absence of wars -- and are the equivalent of European Parade Armour, such as this example from the [[http://www.flickr.com/photos/mharrsch/809566094/ Metropolitan Museum of Art.]]
* Moammar Qaddafi, the real Liberace among Northern-African dictators.
* During UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, the German army was distinctive in that its combat uniforms were (at least at the start of the war) just camouflaged versions of dress uniforms. Hence all the spiked helmets: those were part of the dress uniform of all German armies, and so they kept those in the combat version; same for double-breasted cavalry outfits and so forth.
** Technically they were field-grey versions of the coloured (mainly blue) uniforms that were worn for peacetime service, which however had come in different grades of "bling" depending on whether it was worn e. g. for garrison drill or parades. And the spiked leather helmets at least could be said to have provided a little more protection than the cloth caps and hats worn by the other armies before the introduction of steel helmets.
** The Australians in WWII, unable to afford more than one type, also used a single uniform for all occasions - combat, sleeping, formal wear, everything. This led to annoyance when Americans in prettier leave-uniforms got all the girls.
** Pretty much ''all'' armies started UsefulNotes/WorldWarI with well-decorated uniforms. The exceptions were the armies from the Commonwealth (continuous wars had made them realize that wearing bright red was a bad idea when facing accurate weapons, so they had switched to khaki), the US Army (that had fought a war in tropical climates at the end of the XIX century wearing blue ''wool'' uniforms, and started introducing alternate materials with khaki colour immediately after), Japan (that had started switching from blue to khaki before the UsefulNotes/RussoJapaneseWar and switched faster after they saw how accurate the Russian riflemen were) and the Royal Italian Army (usually plagued by incompetence among officers and {{Obstructive Bureaucrat}} but praised for their elegant dark blue uniforms, the Royal Italian Army suddenly switched the home country uniforms to their trademark grey-green after a civilian who had read about the battles of the UsefulNotes/RussoJapaneseWar pointed out the blue uniforms made them easy targets and experiments confirmed it. They had previously adopted khaki for colonial service due the issues in wearing blue under the African sun). The Russian Army adopted khaki uniforms in 1907, after using dyed khaki uniforms in the Russo-Japanese War. Accurate rifle fire and sniping of officers made everyone adopt more sensible uniforms.
* While the Aztec jaguar warriors actually had quite useful armor for their climate and time period, they probably didn't need it to be covered in feathers, gems, and war paint as well.
* From the 2010 Moscow Victory Day Parade, compare the uniforms of the soldiers from [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/fc/2010_Moscow_Victory_Day_Parade-11.jpeg Turkmenistan]] and [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/25/2010_Moscow_Victory_Day_Parade-8.jpeg Armenia]]. The Turkmen general even wore a CustomUniform and rode on a white horse, while all the Armenians, even the leaders of the column, wore regular uniforms and simply put their medals on. (Turkmenistan, of course, is the country that was ruled by [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saparmurat_Niyazov Saparmurat Niyazov]], a [[TheCaligula crazy dictator]] if there ever was one.) And Armenia is one of few CIS nations with [[UsefulNotes/ArmosWithArmor real military experience]].
* The Mess Dress uniform (the one worn for dinners, parties and balls) for the Honourable Artillery Company (UK), to the point where privates from those unit get more bling than a lot of commissioned officers from other units.
* The BritishRoyalGuards are a relatively subdued example, but there's a ''reason'' we stopped making our squaddies wear bright red jackets for anything but peacetime ceremonial duties.
* A rather ironic subversion is the evolution of the "casual" subculture amongst football hooligans in the UK during the TheSeventies and TheEighties. Because [[FootballHooligans football firms]] had very distinctive styles of dress (stereotypically skinheads and Doc Martens), the police could easily identify hooligans and contain them. Liverpool and Everton fans brought back European fashions and designer labels from their away games, and their firms began wearing them to their games. Other fans initially laughed at this "poncey" new trend, until they realized that the Liverpudlian firms were never getting arrested because the police didn't immediately identify them. Soon, everyone was doing it, but for a time, the football fans' BlingOfWar actually served to camouflage them rather than make them stand out.
* Since the late 18th century the number of orders and decorations increased dramatically as many countries instituted new ones; the 1780s and 1790s also saw the introduction of decorations for combattants below officer rank and the end of the NapoleonicWars that of campaign medals, i. e. decorations not just for those who performed deeds of valour or that were exceptional in other ways, but to everybody who had been part of the forces in the field. Thus the chests of military men became decorated with a lot more ribbons and pieces of enameled metal than before. This was also reflected in painted portraits, where an officer usually would be shown wearing all his decorations to the point that it was quite common that orders or medals awarded after an officer had sat for his portrait would be painted in additionally later. How many of his decorations an officer would actually wear every day was an entirely different matter, but of course these portraits often were used as reference by the makers of historical movies and television series, leading to slip-ups where people are shown wearing decorations that they only were awarded long after the year a film is set in.
** This becomes particularly glaring when not only the decoration is shown too early in time for that particular person, but becomes "impossible" in general terms. This troper for instance recalls a British TV series about the life of Edward VII in which UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck (born 1815) was shown wearing an Iron Cross in the 1860s and Wilhelm II (born 1859) was shown wearing one in the late 19th century. The original Iron Cross was awarded exclusively during the [[NapoleonicWars Wars of Liberation]] (1813-1815), its second incarnation exclusively during the [[UsefulNotes/FrancoPrussianWar Franco-German War]] (1870/71) and the third one exclusively during [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne World War 1]] (1914-1918).
* There is an old anecdote that right before a battle with Rome, Antiochus III asked Hannibal Barca, who was a guest of his at the time, whether his army will be enough for the Romans. Hannibal took a look and said "[[DeadpanSnarker Yes. They are very greedy, but it'll be enough]]."
* Germanic warriors loved this. They would have inlaid and JewelEncrusted weapons(usually on sheaths and hilts for obvious reasons), and some swords had holes drilled into the hilt or guard to hang rings which had a mystic significance because their circularity represented eternity and were often used as military decorations.
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