I recently discovered a fabulous way of reducing the pile of things forming archaeological layers – or possibly new civilizations – in the mending basket. Bin? Absolutely not. Forced labour? Also no. The trick, it turns out, is to shift the goal posts.
For a ridiculously long time, I have had a flannel nightie in my mending basket, waiting for a mend. Button-bereft garments come and go, elastic waistbands stretch and are replaced, tears are darned or patched, but this was beyond me. The worn-through yoke needed replacing. Did I know how to replace a yoke? No. So I left the nightie in the basket until such time as enlightenment descended.
Flannel petticoats, where have you been all my life?
Last winter I made myself a flannel petticoat. I can’t remember why – it was just one of those sudden certainties that seize upon me (like the Dishonour Cow). I just knew that I needed a flannel petticoat, eftsoons. (2. (now archaic), soon after.)
And how right I was. You don’t notice any sudden change when you put it on of a chilly morning, but believe me, you notice when you take it off. Off your outer layers come, with scarcely a change in your temperature. And then you remove the flannel petticoat and suddenly YOU ARE COLD.