Wellywoman blogged recently about what to wear when gardening What a topic! I didn't realise I had so many favourites and habits until I got going but the more I thought about it the more it felt like it should be a blog of its own. Left as a comment it was going to be longer than the blog itself.
So first of all gardening requires very comfy trousers. This was fine until recently. I have a pair of old M&S stretch jeans and would have said they fitted the bill. The only problem is that they are just a little too big in the waist so tend to inch their way down. They are, however, suitably battered which is essential for gardening trousers as, no matter how many times I tell myself I won't, at some point in any gardening session I will end up kneeling down. The problem came when I bought a new pair of jeans, intended to be my smartish jeans. Not the smartest pair of all you understand, not the ones that I might wear with heeled boots, but the next pair down, to be worn with flat shoes but definitely not my scruff. The only trouble is that these jeans are so very, very comfy that it is hard to take them off and put my gardening trousers on. They fit perfectly. They are neither too tight nor too loose. They feel like a second skin. As a result I keep finding myself outside in the garden, kneeling down of course, wearing my second best jeans. I know I will just have to give in and buy another pair to be my second smartest and let these jeans assume their destiny. I just can't quite bring myself to spend the money yet.
In summer I wear shorts, long and rather baggy shorts which even my best friend couldn't say were flattering. Maybe there are some flattering shorts out there somewhere but I can't spare the time to go shopping for them. Winter or summer I wear an old, soft tee shirt. In winter I also wear an old navy fleece with lovely big pockets. Jackets are easy but footwear is not. When it is hot I wear an ancient pair of sandals. I can't garden in summer without getting my feet filthy and I would love to find something to wear which is both cool enough for hot weather and which protects my toes. When it is not so hot I wear an ancient pair of trainers and in winter I mostly wear wellies. I might change over to walking boots in cold dry weather. I am about to demote the much loved boots which took me along the Offa's Dyke Path a couple of years ago and have been replaced by a new pair of Scarpa boots. Wouldn't it be great to garden in a floaty dress or stylish skirt? Maybe you have to have a formal English country garden for that and a gardener or two in the background doing the dirty, sweaty stuff. The kind of gardening I do seems to need jeans and boots.
And the last thing is gloves. I love gardening gloves and have about six pairs. Unfortunately I can't bear thick, stiff gloves and know that if I wear them I will take them off. Even with my favourite thin pairs, I am quite likely to find that I have discarded them somewhere but at least thin gloves have a chance of being on my hands for a fair while. The only problem is that time and again they go on the right hand at the index finger and the thumb. It must be my weeding action!
So if anyone has any great suggestions for summer gardening footwear and thin but tough gardening gloves please let me know. Until then I will be found with dirty feet in summer and a dirty index finger on my right hand!