Thursday, 12 June 2014

Barnesii Domesticus

The title refers to an extremely rare (almost extinct) creature, seldom seen (something to be thankful for) ie - me.

I would take umbrage should I hear anyone describe me as a " slut," or more vernacular,"lazy cow", or even "a bit blind to what needs doing", but, I have to admit to taking my time to get around to matters domestic.

Not only have I an aversion to washing, scrubbing, polishing vacuuming dusting etc but I also have little energy these days so 'prioritise' those things I can't any longer avoid.

Today I was determined to wash my sitting-room curtains.  For those who have been reading this blog for a while, they were hung, new, when my sitting room was redecorated.

I know that curtains never look the same again once washed but felt it was time (almost three years) to see off some of the dust which has been making my throat (already suffering from a virus) even more sore.

The label on the curtains says "dry clean only", a phrase I seem unable to translate.  To me this is a clear indication that they need a little care when washing.

Tentatively, I washed just the one pair initially to see whether I had once again got away with my reading of the label, and surprise surprise, they emerged from the washer and later the dryer in perfect condition.

The second pair is currently enjoying my version of "dry cleaning".

Contrary to popular belief I am not completely mad, just good at reading all the labels.  If the material is synthetic (these are) then as long as you follow instructions on your washing machine and dryer for 'delicate' items it is generally perfectly safe to wash in a machine.

I might add that the ordeal of taking curtains down, packing them up and getting a bus into town to a dry cleaners then the revcerse action to get them back again seems to me totally unnecessary.

Lazy, moi?

Not guilty M'lud.

The snippet of a picture above is the way they looked the day they were first hung, and that is exactly how they look today.


  1. Birds of a feather!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. If only the rest of the world was as bright as we!

  3. May I join the club, Ray? I hate paying the extortionate cost of dry-cleaning unless I absolutely can't avoid it, so I too am a careful reader of labels. :-)

  4. Life membership duly awarded Perpetua. (thinks, perhaps I'm not so clever as I thought. No, that's ridiculous, it's just that a lot of WOMEN are also clever) :) :)

  5. I daren't tell you how long it's been since I washed my curtains! I do like a clean and tidy home though but anything that hangs above my short height requires far too much effort.

  6. I find 'clean and tidy' to be a relative term Jane. While I don't live in total squalor, the finer points of cleaning tend to be a bit elastic.
    Tidyness is another matter entirely. I can't live in a space where every surface is cluttered, but the odd speck (or two) of dust are less important.

  7. "Hello", sorry I know it has been a while. I am no domestic goddess for sure, no daily vacuuming around here although I think it is relatively clean & tidy. I am always thankful for visitors & we are having some this weekend. It ensures I get to those places I often choose to overlook. I have even washed, ironed & rehung some curtains :-)

  8. Hi Shona, good to hear from you. These days I never have visitors so have no sudden rushes of conscience to force me into a cleaning frenzy.
    Having said that, I do keep washing up to date (including of course all the things other people dry clean), basically if there is a machine to do it for me it gets done, Otherwise no chance.

  9. Ray, you've inspired me! May I join the club too?

  10. Most certainly you may and most welcome too. The only proviso is that you eschew (good word that), all efforts to persuade you to become house proud, or to join the "see it clean it" brigade.

  11. No danger of that. I'm too ashamed to broadcast the age of my sitting room curtains over the blogosphere; even more to admit that I've never cleaned them...until I read your post! Anyoldhow, I'm pleased to report that I threw the smallest curtain into the machine and it emerged spotless. Now all I have to do is reinsert all those fiddly little hooks into the pencil pleats...

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  13. I've always presumed 'Dry Clean Only' was for woollen suits and non-colour fast silks. Our sofa and its cushion covers state 'dry clean only' - but a 30oC wash using the 'Pre-Soak' function and 'Vanish' wash booster brings them up lovely - tho' they are a swine to iron...

    I advise anyone of modest incomes and above, who find domestic task an irksome chore, to employ a cleaner. Despite having slender financial means at present (I'm doing a post-grad course) we have not got rid of Izzy, our wonder worker, who for the cost of £35 a fortnight keeps our house clean and tidy - and has improved our own less than domestic habits around the home. We still do the 'deep cleaning' - but it is surprising how long you can leave something, when everything looks okay without too much probing and inspection...

  14. "Slender financial means" is a relative term. £35 per fortnight would leave a gaping hole in my very low income. However, I am considering getting someone who advertises locally to do a 'one off' clean for me, just to give me a starting point.
    I too have washed my sofa covers etc in the last couple of weeks and am delighted to say that "dry clean" is a scare-mongering tactic.