Any time a quality Gypsy, with the correct amount of feather, is bred to another non-feathered breed, a great deal of feather is lost. Sometimes, Clydes and/or heavily feathered Shires, when crossed with Gypsies, to produce Drum Horses, do retain a reasonable amount of feather.
I don't think it is one little bit difficult, to find who quality Gypsies, who look alike in type or conformation. There are tons of good ones, all across the world, who look very alike.
Could I ask which registry in the US, was willing to register your horse as purebred? Amazing to me, since for many years, DNA has been required for registration. Some registries do however, register part-breds. Our world-wide, DNA data base is enormous now and added to constantly. For the last ten years, I have personally done a huge amount of pedigree research and tried to add the DNA of very old and famous horses, to our DNA database. It has been the only way to confirm, what we have been told. Our DNA'd pedigrees, are in fact, a lot more reliable than many pedigrees in some other breeds.
Interviews with some of the (now) very old breeders, have given us a great deal of insight, into the breed. Collecting old photos, have also helped. We, as fanciers of the breed, don't or try not to, just accept that anything with a bit of colour from the UK, is a true Gypsy Horse. Fact is, that most of the coloured horses seen by the side of the road in the UK, are just that - some type of coloured horse. The truly top quality herds of Gypsy Horses, are seldom seen by the public.
Question, if I may. Why would you never purchase a horse from Appleby?