Saving the best for what?

Cerise suede

It was a beautiful jacket, fuchsia pink cashmere and love at first sight. It cost a not-so-small fortune and there’s no way that I could afford to buy it now, not even at its 1993 price. You would think that I’d have worn it to death, for I felt a million dollars in it. But stupidly I rarely allowed myself the joy of putting it on it because I thought that it might get spoiled and that it should be saved it for best.  It ended up, years later, in the charity bag, barely worn and now hopelessly outdated.

I’d like to say that I learned a lesson from this but I still have a tendency towards saving things to keep them nice. But for what? So that I can enjoy looking at them? In case I won’t be able to find anything quite as nice to replace them? This, of course, won’t be necessary if they never get used anyway as they won’t wear out, and eventually, they’ll go the way of the cashmere jacket.

I have a particularly treasured piece of jewellery. It’s not especially valuable in monetary terms but there is great sentiment attached to it and yet, I would need no more than the fingers of one hand to count the number of times I’ve worn it. But why on earth would I not? Is it a case of ‘what if I lost it’? Well. If I did, at least I could think back on how much I had enjoyed wearing it. As things stand, if we were burgled and it was stolen, I’d have almost no happy memories associated with it.  Heavens, I have even refrained from using the leather bound notebook gifted by a friend who knows how much I like unusual stationery, because it’s ‘too nice to use’.

There’s probably an element of hereditary here.  My mother kept best tea towels. Tea towels for goodness sake!  The old ones were used day to day, whilst the newer ones remained pristine as they hung over the oven rail. Was it because anyone coming into her kitchen would say “What beautiful tea towels you have”? Because, of course, that’s what people do!!  Right.

There were other nice things that rarely saw the light of day, a best dinner service kept only for the most special occasions, hand embroidered table linen not used in case it got spoiled, a set of exquisite cut glass tumblers consigned forever to a display cabinet in favour of using plain ones, probably bought in Tesco. What pleasure my mother could have had, every day, drinking from sparkling Waterford crystal.

And what pleasure I could have if, instead of keeping them boxed in my wardrobe, I took out the cerise suede shoes I bought several months ago and actually wore them.  I’m going to do it; I really am. And I’m going to wear that necklace and write in that book. I’m going to use my beautiful things and make every day feel a little bit special.

How about you? Do you have things that you love but never use, and if so, why do you think this is?


  1. Nothing saved for best here, clothes are so expensive now I make sure Ali get my money’s worth, love those shoes, I am looking for green flatties for the summer.


    • I wanted green ones but couldn’t find any. I bought white and dyed them. It set me off on a path of dyeing as it was so successful. I intend writing a post about it very soon. I don’t buy many clothes nowadays so I need to let myself enjoy them!


  2. You are right, my blog is currently inaccessible … my computer man phoned me yesterday to say he was doing something, changing server or something, and I would be offline for approximately the weekend and then things would be back to normal again (I hope!) I can use the internet and access others’ blogs but mine is down at the moment. No, I’ve most certainly not deleted it, I love having my blog, I’ve found it such fun.
    Speak soon,
    Margaret P


  3. Ooh, I love those shoes! Yes, wear them, even if it’s to do the shopping. They will brighten your day and those who seem them, too, I would think. I have some red flatties and I wear those now because they were also ‘for best’ when I bought them. But I never need ‘best’ any more, we don’t go do dances or dinners or the theatre, we prefer to have coffee out or at home in the garden, prefer a country walk to a fancy theatre visit (and we don’t like driving home at gone 11 pm anyway, in the dark, now we’re older.)
    I use my late mother’s ‘best’ dinner service every day although I don’t put it in the dishwasher as the pattern would soon be removed by modern detergents. But we use it all the time. And although we used our best Waterford glasses and almost all of them have been smashed, we enjoyed using them, and now we’ve bought 2nd hand cut glass in antiques’ centres for a fraction the price of the originals, and they’re equally as good.
    With clothes, I buy few but I try and buy good ones, ditto shoes. But it’s silly to have them just handing in the wardrobe. I wore my ‘best’ lace dress (bought last September) recently to a memorial service and felt I looked good – it was modern and yet being navy blue, it was respectful of the event. So yes, let’s use our ‘best’ things, let’s not hide them all away!
    Margaret P
    PS I cant access my own blog at the moment and mightn’t be able to do for the weekend, as my computer man is changing server, or something like that. Others can access it, but I can’t, so I can’t approve comments or leave comments. But it should be back to normal soon.


    • Margaret – I can’t access your blog. I tried last night and again this morning. I decided that you had either had internet problems or you given up and deleted it (seriously – I didn’t really think this!) Yes, it is VERY silly to have things that we don’t use. I have turned over a new leaf! I’m going to take a hard look at everything I ‘save’ and start wearing/using it.


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