Tag Archives: damage

Holey Laundry?

You may sometimes notice small holes appearing in your newly washed laundry.  If you’re pretty sure that it’s not just that the material is worn and aged anyway then you might like to know the following:

The enzymes in biological washing powders can attack the natural fibres of especially wool and silk, breaking them down.  (There are usually warnings on washing product packaging but they are not always obvious).  For washing these delicate fabrics therefore, use something gentle that you might use for babies’ clothes, like ‘Dreft’.  I personally have found that 100% cotton can be similarly eaten up by the enzymes in biological powders and the solution for me was to change powder (in my case ‘Persil’ biological powder did the damage while other biological powders seemed OK).

Check the instructions of your washing machine for recommended spin speeds.  Too high a spin speed can loosen and damage fibres.   Below is a general chart to show that certain fabrics need certain maximum spin speeds:

             Cottons: 1400 rpm

             Minimum iron: 1200 rpm

             Delicates: 600 rpm

             Woollens: 1200 rpm

             Silks: 400 rpm

             Shirts: 600 rpm

             Denim: 900 rpm

For me, these two are the most obvious culprits but if you’ve tried altering both of the above it is also worth knowing that deodorant has been implicated and may damage clothing – so changing brand again may help.

Then there are also the most obvious reasons – which I’ve left until last here because I assume you’ve already considered them:

Don’t wash delicate fabrics with clothes that have zips, hooks, or wires.  For washing mixed loads where you are concerned about damage in this way, you may find using special laundry bags useful.   These come in a variety of sizes, some large enough to accommodate things like skirts.  Either place the offending article (with the metal fastening) or the delicate articles in a fine mesh laundry bag and this should help to minimise damage.  Under wire bras should, in any case, really be hand washed.

Where is the damage occurring?  If it’s close to the underarms and you wear under wire bras, is it possible that the wire is snagging on the fabric causing wear? 

If it is across the front or back of the material, around waist height, it’s possible that it’s just wear and tear from leaning against kitchen counter tops.   Apparently granite worktops are particularly abrasive to clothing.

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Feline Fosbury Flop

Cat standI had one of those weird moments today when panic makes time stand still and thoughts that might well be the basis of an entire conversation in the normal course of events are flashed across the brain and collated at the speed of light.

I had just finished getting washed, dressed and made up, had just popped the mascara back into its tube, zipped up my little make-up bag and put the mirror back in its place by the washhand basin and was thinking to myself how lucky the timing would be because the kittens had fallen peacefully asleep.  That meant that I wouldn’t have to speedily slime my way through a crack in the front door to prevent feline escapees. 

Cat back flipThen I heard it – an ominous thudding and the unhealthy sound of porcelain chinking coming from the bathroom.  I went in to see kitten William, up on the window ledge, chasing a fly and doing a quick succession of Fosbury Flops onto my little white porcelain dish … which sits beside my brand Laura Ashley optic jarspanking new glass optic jar from Laura Ashley (of which I am inordinately fond at the moment)… which sits beside a little blue Wedgewood trinket box.  I went into an instant stressy.  The fly kept buzzing and batting itself frantically against the windows, meaning that even though I had caught William and was extracting his struggling form from the bathroom, in came brother Harry to see what all the fuss was about.  Of course he quickly figured it out and started doing his own back flips amongst my precious possessions.

Cat crawling

Then my brain went into that odd panic slow-mo, where neurons are clearly sparking at supersonic speed and entire lengthy thoughts are processed in nanoseconds.  Inside my brain it went something like this:. 

Question: Do I open the window to let the fly out? Answer: Don’t be silly, the cats will be out and away in an instant.

Question: Do I try to catch the fly?  Answer: Now that’s even more silly.  With what?  Do you think you’re the Shaolin monk out of the Kung Fu series?  Catch it between your thumb and forefinger perhaps? … er, I don’t think so!

Question: Can I catch both cats at the same time and get them out of here?  Answer:  Almost as silly as option two.

Little PrincessQuestion: Do I move my stuff to a place of safety?  Answer:  At last!  Some sense!  But you can’t carry everything at once so what do you save first, brainbox?

I did get my stuff out, but only whilst blubbering like a two-year-old girl  – maybe as a result of blind panic, I don’t know.  (I’ve given up trying to understand why and how I cry so often and so easily, I just do.  Always have).  By the time bits had been moved, the fly had dematerialised (or was eaten) and I looked in the mirror.  I had panda eyes — my mascara had smudged and started to streak down my cheeks.  I had to be out early this morning so I quickly patched up the damage and as I slipped out of the front door minutes later I noticed the cats were cuddling and dozing on the bed as though nothing at all had just happened.  Little [~ bleeeeeep ~]!

Cat stretch

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New era

New scienceA Glasgow team is to launch a major trial to assess whether stem cells can be used to treat stroke patients. ….It is hoped the cells will regenerate areas damaged by stroke and increase patients’ movements and mental abilities.

~ BBC News Website, Monday 19th Jan 2009

 

The first baby in the UK tested before conception for a genetic form of breast cancer has been born.  …The embryo was screened for the altered BRCA1 gene, which would have meant the girl had an 80% chance of developing breast cancer.  Women in three generations of her father’s family have been diagnosed with the disease in their 20s.

~ BBC  News Website, Friday, 9th January 2009

‘Nay-sayers’ have jumped all over both stories.  In the first news story above that we are ‘killing one member of the human race to help another’, in the second that this is ‘eugenics’.  I don’t want to get into a big long discussion about the rights and wrongs of this new science – read the stories, watch the videos and decide for yourself.  As someone whose family is affected by both illnesses, is it any wonder that I’m extremely heartened by both stories? I just often wonder if those who are so vehemently against these advances will feel the same when they too are affected by some of these issues.

I think the medical breakthroughs we are seeing are just wonderful.  Stem cell research, in particular, seems to be showing all kinds of promise for cures for the most awful illnesses – illnesses that will almost certainly touch each and every one of our lives at some point or another.  For me, we are witnessing a new era of science and I find it very exciting.

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From the sublime to the, well, totally mundane actually…my other WordPress site is here

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