I've always tried to do something special with my bases, since in my experience a good base is just as important as a good paint job. When I started my 15mm armies, I just painted the base solid green and left it at that, but I soon graduated to Woodland Scenics foam rubber flocking. After a few hundred bases, I began mixing in rocks and dirt, getting what you see here:
This is still my standard flocking method for 15mm figures. It looks good without overpowering the little men. Sometimes I'll do something more ornate, as I did with my Flames of War Germans.
Here we have Woodland Scenics fine brown ballast with bits of earth blend flock and medium grey ballast. I use talus as bigger rocks. And of course, the tall grass from Woodland Scenics too.
The tall grass has always frustrated me. I see all these beautiful grass tufts on other peoples' bases, and I've never been able to recreate that look.
So last Fall my buddy Dale, who introduced me to miniature wargaming (and also maintains a blog), took me aside and whispered a few words of advice. "Silflor," he said. "You've got to try Silflor. They make grass that will look just killer on your bases."
It took me nearly a year, but I finally took Dale's advice and ordered some Silflor grass tufts. I got them from Scenic Express, a model railroad scenics retailer. Their prices were reasonable, and only two days after I placed my order, I had the Silflor tufts in my hand.
The tufts come in four colors with decreasing brightness: spring, summer, late summer, and autumn. I settled on late summer and autumn, the two most subdued tones. These packs cost $22 apiece, so they're not cheap.
But you do get a lot of tufts for your money. They are stuck to a flexible plastic tube. I placed the tube over my hand and used tweezers to remove the tufts. They're pretty hard to get off the packaging! I dipped them in a little tacky glue and pressed firmly to attach them to my bases.
And here is what they look like. The Carthaginian spearmen on the left got the autumn tufts. The Celts got the late summer tufts. I use Noch brown ballast for most of my ancients. The grass tufts and talus make for pretty good looking bases.
This unit of Gallic gestati received the full treatment with the late summer tufts. I'm sold on the Silflor, and I'll definitely buy some more when this batch runs out.
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