Janet Christie’s Mum’s the Word

The long and the short of the makeover queen



‘Mum, have you seen my denim jacket?” says Eldest.

“Bedroom floor?”

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“Pub floor?”


“Sorry, not seen it.”

But I know someone who has. Youngest, our own wee Jock Wan, turning discarded duds filched from bedroom floors into fast fashion. I seek her out and pick a jacket up from the back of a chair.

“That’s a nice cropped denim jacket. Where did you get it? Primarni, Georgio at Asda?”

“Eldest’s room.”

“You mean…?”

“Yeah, he wasn’t wearing it, so I took it and cut the bottom half off.”

“£$%$£$%! That was a Levi’s jacket.”

“Aw, he won’t mind. He wasn’t really using it. Real dad style, but it’s good now isn’t it? I’ve done the same with Middle’s combat jacket. You just chop it off below the top pockets, it’s a way to update those old styles.”

“£$££$£$!” I say.

Talk about indulged wee sister... I might be guilty of borrowing the occasional cosy hoodie from the boydults myself, but apart from treating it to a wash, it’s returned pristine immediately after wear.

However, there might be a silver sparkly lining to this tale of grand theft retro wear. Because there was a time when Youngest would borrow my clothes – only in extremis, when a crop top and jeans with more rip than denim just weren’t doing it against the biting wind, it’d be, “Can I wear your scarf please?”

“No. Told you to bring a coat.”

“But I’m your CHILD.”

“God. OK.”

Now though, the flow of clothes has begun to reverse and is heading my way as she takes pity on me, donates a belt here (“your tops don’t have to be baggy”), loans a stretchy red halter-neck jumpsuit for a party there (no, it never made it out the front door) and now it seems, a nifty wee cropped denim jacket.

“Try it,” she says.

“Nice jacket,” says a passing Eldest, on his way out.


“The one I’m looking for is like that… only longer. Anyway, I’m wearing something else now, so it’s OK.”

“See.” says Youngest as the door slams behind him. “He said it was OK.”

“He kind of did, didn’t he?”