I struggle to make my whites sparkle. Years ago, my good friend J and I had a lot of fun at a little antiques fair in York, selling old bits and pieces we'd found at jumble sales and church bazaars. J always put me to shame with her crisp, uniformly ice-white linens but I've never learned how achieve this result (I did ask her the secret - she shrugged, "Nothing special".) Nevertheless, I still can't resist buying dainty lawns and sturdy linens and...
...they pile up in our attic, in varying shades of off-white, awaiting - what?
This cloth is very fine, hand-worked using all kinds of techniques. I've soaked it in odd potions, boiled it up in a jam pan and hung it in the sun for hours, but still the pale brown stain persists.
Smocks are my favourites but inevitably, being work clothes, they are often stained.
I wonder what potent brew some tired agricultural labourer dribbled onto these Dorset buttons - I can't get rid of it!
This luscious nightdress is fit for a grand lady, but its front is fatally be-smirched.
I won't be trying that then - any ideas before I tuck my skirt in my knickers and jump in the wash tub?