Sunday, April 01, 2007

Glamour in the garden

Gone are the days when I potted plants wearing two right-handed canvas gloves, one with a hole in the index finger, the only survivors of a bulk purchase from Home Depot. No longer do I look at the pricey clogs at our upscale nursery, sigh, and walk on.

Hell, no. Now I have two pairs of fancy garden clogs (one with a removable insert) and a whole wardrobe of gloves, most of them gifts. It's kind of ridiculous, because the two most beautiful pairs are light-colored leather/suede. How in gods name am I supposed to keep these clean? One pair is elbow-length white suede, really more suited for the opera than the back perennial bed. And, of course, there is the monogrammed pair above. Those are not actually my initials. My mother-in-law, bless her non-blog-reading heart, refuses to accept that I did not take my husband's name, not even with a hyphen, so she requested ELB instead of EAL. As if this will somehow make it so. They are tight too; you have to loosen them one finger at a time, like dress gloves. Good for specialty work, like this:

As for clogs, they will always be my footwear of choice, though I did enjoy the discussion about clogs vs. boots carried on between Carol of May Dreams Garden and Yolanda Elizabet of Bliss. YE, who gardens in the Netherlands, scorns clogs completely.

I love the flowered wellies and the abbreviated pink and Burberry wellies YE says she wears in the garden, but for me they are utterly impractical. I am constantly running in and out of the house throughout my gardening sessions and I must have shoes I can slip out of instantly. I agree that clogs are kind of homely; remember when we all wore Bastads? Clogs have actually made a number of fashion comebacks, but my reasons for wearing them in the garden have nothing to do with fashion.

If anyone has suggestions about how to maintain these gloves, I'd love to hear them!


Carol said...

I would have no idea how to maintain those gloves! Monogrammed at that. But I bet Yolanda Elizabet knows how to take care of such fine gardening gloves. Hmmmm, now maybe we need to get everyone to post pictures of their gardening gloves?

EAL said...

The white ones are already trashed. They were beautiful.

Rosengeranium said...

Use the same methods as you use for leather and suede shoes. That should do the trick.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

Of course I do, Carol.

There's a garden glove for every occasion, and these very stylish ones, one should only wear when one is swanning about doing a bit of light pruning with a pair of secateurs in the one hand and a glass of bubbly in the other. There, problem solved. ;-)

Amy Stewart said...

I'd like suggestions on how to convince your mother-in-law that your last name is what you say it is.

LostRoses said...

You can keep them like new by displaying them prominently (preferably near a pair of flowered wellies) near your potting area. Visitors will admire your good taste while in reality you are using the bulk purchase ones from Home Depot.

Good gloves are wasted on me. I never take care of them properly and prefer to just wear them out. But I do like flowered ones! I think they cost $1.49 vs the 99 cent ones.

chuck b. said...

You could wear other gloves over them.

Kate said...

Now this is a question worth pondering ... and hopefully it will not cause a sleepless night!!

It seems to me that these gloves should never touch dirt and should rest primly on a table covered in a linen cloth when your mother-in-law next visits.

Your post cracked me up - Thank you!!

lisa said...

I positively LOVE those gloves! I've been seeking a truly thorn-proof pair for rose and blackberry pruning, as well as cactus repotting. Do they work well for that, or do thorns poke thru? As for your ain't just a river in Egypt, huh? :)

Jenn said...

Go out, get them dirty, don't worry about it. They are Garden Gloves.

I throw my leather gloves in the wash when they need it. They come out stiff, but soften up as I work with them. Of course, this is not an option for arthritic joints, but if you have strong hands it works just fine.

EAL said...

The white suede ones seem pretty strong, but to be honest, I won't know about any of these recent gifts until I garden. It's really crappy weather here. I don't get out there until late April when it's time to prune the roses.

Throwing them in the washer--yeah!

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