The Divine Blue Denim

I’m a lover of denim in all it’s incarnations but in particular, there is nothing as joyous as a robust but pleasingly worn, piece of denim workwear. It is the very reason for which denim was created and has a complete honesty to it that is hard to match. My divine piece of blue denim is an old but enduring garden tunic that straddles the seasons, perfect with a poloneck under, to weather the winds of February but great on it’s own in spring through to autumn, heatwave permitting. It works, it really does, the large front pocket is not a top opener which would inevitably fill with compost on every foray outdoors but is capacious enough for labels, string, gloves and some mysterious seeds, escaped from their packet. There is nothing I love more than something well-made and pleasing to behold, that does what it should – think Sussex trug, or a traditional galvanised watering can. All very satisfying!

I also have some rather wonderful denim gardening dungarees. To be fair they are not the most flattering as I no longer have the sylphlike frame of Felicity Kendal who immortalised the look in The Good Life, but nonetheless they are practical and robust. 

To be frank, I don’t find much in the way of good, practical gardening clothes, either online or at any of the summer shows. Many of them are ill-conceived, poor quality or just extremely dull and frumpy. Some are most certainly style over substance. The horror of having to end my gardening days in some mud coloured fleecy horror sold in a garden centre is more than I could stand. I’m sure many of you will agree. My denim tunic is, sadly, no longer made, although I know they sold well. One of the jobs on my winter list is to make a pattern from it and make myself at least one or two more – maybe in some fabulously bright coloured canvas, if I can find any.  

In the meantime, this magical tunic represents happy times and transports me, in an instant to a calm and tranquil place where nothing matters other than the trundling of the seasons and their accompanying birdsong.

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