Whilst in London for the conference in February, I dropped into Banana Republic and bought a couple of treasures. One,a silky top which I've worn several times and feel really comfy in, the other a creamy cap sleeve ruffle-edged cardigan in a merino-cotton mix which I thought would be perfect for a chilly summer evening. Because we were nowhere near cap-sleeve cardigan weather, I put it away and brought it out to wear for the first time on Friday evening.
My cardigan is cream and I chose to wear it unbelted over black top and trousers.
When I got home, to my horror, I discovered three small holes in my lovely new cardi. The only explanation could be that the moths had been having a feast. Not a happy bunny, I can tell you.
Fortunately, Banana Republic are one of the companies who continue to offer spare buttons and, in this case, a card of mending yarn. Also, fortunate that I am the kind of person who squirrels these things away in case of such disasters, so I was well equipped to tackle the challenge.
I'm also quite proud of my ability to darn. When a UK magazine relaunched a couple of years ago and included a "how to" feature, they consulted me for darning advice, no less! So, feeling relatively optimistic, I set to and armed with my magnifying lamp, I carefully mended five holes, because when I looked more closely, I found another two.
I did a quick check afterwards and discovered another couple. Then redid one which didn't meet my own standards and did a better job.
Found another hole as I finished that one.
Checked it over and thought that I'd give it a cool rinse through in some gentle wool wash before putting it away. I might consider putting it in a ziplock bag and freezing it before I do. That should get rid of any of the little blighters who fancy another feast.
I gently squeezed the rinsing water out of it before reshaping it to dry and you can imagine what I found. Yes, another hole.
This afternoon, as I took the dry cardigan to sort out that last hole, I found another four, making a total of thirteen holes.
I've now carefully pressed the cardigan and feel sure I got them all now. It's going in a bag and into the freezer before another hole appears
But every cloud has a silver lining and my dear friend Mary has taken her personal shopping responsibilities very seriously indeed and has tracked down a replacement cardigan for me in a Los Angeles branch of Banana Republic. It's black, not cream, so my repairs have not been in vain either.
Any tips and hints for foolproof moth protection gratefully received. I really don't need any more darning practice.