Cloth moths and bespoke suits………


Easter is nearly upon us,which is good news as it means a bit more chocolate! For me, it also means that spring is well and truly here.With all the blossom and washes of daffodil yellow I like to remind myself that summer is on its way and that winter is long behind me. This is when I start rifling through my wardrobe and drawing out my winter clothes. This is so I can carefully package up all the items that evil moths like to nibble on! It is not actually the moth that makes those annoying holes in your favourite suit or that beloved cashmere jumper. It is the larvae of the moth. Those clever little moths lay their eggs and then die happily in the knowledge that their offspring will grow big and strong feeding off a delightful bespoke suit! See, evil was appropriate!

I have been waging the war on terror, on moths for some years. I have been successful in terrorising the moths. Firstly it is about knowing your opponent. The moths that actually ruin your clothes are those little, 3/8″ little, golden brown moths, cloth moths or also known as Tineola bisselliella. Not all moths are evil, I am not tar brushing the whole lot! No, I am definitely discriminating against the cloth moth!


The moths like warm environments, such as your wardrobe in your centrally heated house!! The moth can survive in colder temperatures and reproduce, just at a slower rate. It also does not care about what season it is. I have heard of many ways of treating a moth problem, lavender in the wardrobe. Conkers placed around the house and in between clothes. Cedar wood clothes hangers and cedar wood blocks in pockets. I have tried all of these. Then one day I discovered my beautiful cashmere stole ravaged by moth. I snapped!! Last straw!! I became ruthless. I threw away all the clothes that had larvae damage, this was to get rid of any eggs that still remained on the clothes. I then had all my other clothes dry cleaned. This was to chemically zap any eggs, larvae or moths still hiding. I then introduced myself to Rentokil.  I bought 2 cans of their moth killer, and went to town on those moths! I would have loved to have killed those moths with the delightful whiffs of lavender or laughed them to their death with the conkers. However, chemicals were my last option. It worked. You spray each room, and when I say each room I mean every room in your house. Why do half a job? Spray the room, nooks, crannies, wardrobes, bureaus and even under the bed. Try not to breath in the spray as you go, as it does smell like it is killing you. Shut the door and leave the room to fumigate for a few hours. When you re-enter, after having spent a few hours down the pub with a celebratory pint, you won’t see lots of little moths on their backs, “brown bread.” ( as my father likes to say. ) Your room will look just the same. But, over time you will notice dead moths here and there, and with regular application of the spray those moths will cease. The spray does not kill the eggs already laid, so that is why it is important to dry clean your clothes before spraying.

My house has been moth free for quite a few years, but I am always vigilant. If I see a cloth moth, I kill it with my bare hands! Don’t mess with me! Around Easter time I have a job lot of dry cleaning done on my winter clothes and then store them in plastic containers and suit covers. This means they are clean, sealed and ready to wear for next time. For me, I spray my house every 8 to 9 months. This is my guideline, as I have been doing this for years. If you have not sprayed your house before and have cloth moths, try every 3 to 4 months to start, as the cloth moth life cycle is 50 to 80 days.

It is only the cloth moth that I wage war on, so please be kind to all the other moths!

Toodle Pip! Celia!

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