Day 1 #AllotmentFashionWeek 2018!
A year has passed since we were treated to the allotment fashion delights of Bluetooth headphones, bum bags, headscarves and ageing running shoes. Does comfort in the garden or on the allotment continue to win over style? Is there still room for glamour in a world of mud and torn jumpers? Will a post-Brexit world of anarchy see allotment fashion go mainstream on the streets of Chelsea? And what of safety? We all know that steel toe capped boots are your best friend but is that overkill? Surely nobody puts a garden fork through their foot in the real world… after writing a blog post… about garden safety… (Probably sensible that I don’t give fashion tips again this year). Let us begin our journey into #AllotmentFashionWeek 2018 with a visit to some popular allotment holding bloggers, writers, QVC presenters, Instagrammers, journalists – it’s all in a day’s work for the modern veg grower.
Bloggers / Presenters: Agents of Field
Ade and Sophie (AKA ‘Agents of Field’) are definitely among the more stylish of the allotment bloggers I see on social media but they have managed to find a way to combine this with comfort – looking at their allotment fashion style it is clear that one does not necessarily have to compromise. They say:
When working on the allotment, comfort is key. Cotton trousers are looser than jeans, and they dry faster if they get wet. Sturdy boots are a must, as are thick socks. A cap is timeless; a classic piece that has decorated the heads of allotment holders since the dawn of time, so it’s always good to have at least one in your gardening wardrobe. It also keeps your head warm and can keep the sun out of your eyes.
Ade is a man who likes pockets (and one has to wonder if Gareth Southgate is a reader of their blog):
“I like wearing a waistcoat, both for extra warmth and for stashing useful things such as string, labels, etc. in the pockets.”
Sophie might be choosing style over practicality a little:
“There’s nothing like a decent pair of dungarees to channel authentic land girl chic. They’re an absolute pain if you need the loo though!”
But that’s what Agents of Field like to wear when they’re in public on the allotment. In the privacy of their garden however, Ade likes to wear one of Sophie’s skirts (it’s very freeing) and Sophie likes to borrow Ade’s braces (it helps enormously with her paunch.)
Journalist/Editor and Writer: Alice Whitehead
Alice is a lady after my own heart, she says that “When a favourite garment becomes torn, worn or simply unfashionable – it doesn’t get discarded, it goes down the allotment.” I would say the same for all my own clothes, except what often happens is I wear something nice to the allotment ‘just for a minute’ and it gets ripped or stained in the process and joins the allotment fashion collection. Alice goes on “This is why my welly-wanging wardrobe might at first appear ‘posh’, but a closer look will reveal tell-tale signs of overuse.”
Alice can’t begin to remember the amount of change, tools and other garden sundries she’s lost in the lining of her Target Dry coat – thanks to the fact the pockets have no bottoms.
“Comfort is key when gardening so I wear old yoga trousers from N and Willow, with an elasticated waist. So this season.”
They ended up here when the buckles fell off and holes appeared from overuse. Once they start leaking, they’ll be planted with strawberries instead of my feet. Even my favourite fleece has holes along the hem thanks to a hungry moth.
Finally, come sun or showers, Alice never sets foot out of her shed without something on her head.
My favourite fedoras are from Zakira and M&S. I have various woolly hats in winter. This pink one is from John Rocha at Debenhams. In the summer, my stripy Joules beach hat is the perfect shade giver. When it gets really hot, I dunk it in the water tank and use it as a portable head cooler.