Deborah Ross: Our Woman in Crouch End

Marriage failed? House repossessed? What she really needs is a little shrug cardigan
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The Independent Online

I think it's about time I probably got into this eBay thing. Everyone else appears to be into it, and I don't want to be left out, just as I don't want to be left out of anything unless it's the conga, in which case I beg you to leave me out, please, please, please and don't start grabbing me by the elbow or I'll go and sit in the car, so stop it and stop it now, etc, etc.

Anyway, as I don't want to buy anyone else's tat, I figure I will have to sell mine, not that it is tat. OK, while it's true I'm not exactly offering Galaxy hour-glass dresses, many items from my personal wardrobe, as personally owned by me, are unique and breathtakingly stylish. I know they are both unique and breathtaking stylish because, when I enter a room, it is not uncommon for people to exchange secret (envious?) looks and gasp: "Bloody hell, what are you wearing?"

One should not ever underplay the importance of what you wear. Indeed, as Trinny or Susannah will always put it. "Poor Mary. Her marriage has failed. Her business has gone bust. Her house has just been repossessed. Her legs have dropped off. Her kids are on crack. Her head is on the wrong way round. She's got a drink problem. She's got a degenerative disease. Sooze, what she really, really needs at this point in her life is a little shrug cardigan from Next. Let's go!"

I have already listed the following items:

Forever Friends nightie. Iconic. Sweet teddies cuddling. One hundred per cent pure nylon. Nasty when you've just cut your nails, but otherwise easy-care all the way. Can be belted for that waist-nipped Galaxy look. Can even be belted with one of those handy bum bags. Your partner will love the sexy new you, although might try to hide behind: "What the fuck have you got on? Go and sleep in the spare room. Keep away, keep away, don't touch me!" Reserve price: £879. Bids: Loads and loads and loads, including the V&A who feel it should be saved for the nation.

One pair "posh shorts" (herringbone; wool; supremely itchy). Sort of thing that looks great on supermodels but which no real person you have ever met can wear. Reserve price: £546, but comes with a free tulip skirt of the kind that, also, no real person can wear and might actually be no more than an ordinary skirt badly hemmed by a mad, drunk person. Might be Mary. A little shrug cardigan might not be enough. She might also need a mass-produced poncho from Principles. Let's go!

One pair of sweatpants purchased solely to wear round the house but occasionally worn outside the house quite often. What the hell. Has strong celebrity associations. Indeed, as famously worn (once) when an attempt to follow a Rosemary Conley video resulted in a dead faint 20 seconds into the warm-up. As not even nearly new, and with gash up back of leg where there was some kind of collision with the wardrobe on the way down. No cat was intentionally killed on the way down. It just happened to have an unrelated stroke at exactly the same moment it was landed upon. Comes with one of those drawstrings that's annoyingly disappeared down the hole and won't come out no matter how many times you have a go at it with a chopstick. Reserve price: £456. Steep, but genuine vintage and includes chopstick. Bids so far: £879, as there's nothing the world appears to love better than a pair of top-notch cat-killing pants teamed with a chopstick.

The wraparound skirt (Hobbs; navy; knee-length) that unwrapped itself somewhere on Crouch Hill while the wearer was running for the W7. The wearer got to the bus in the nick of time, but the skirt did not. Reserve price: oh, just have it. Less said the better.

Tiny lime-green bikini. Only worn once on a beach, as the wearer felt, for some reason, that everyone was staring at her and thinking: how could someone with a figure like that even think about it? Hasn't she heard of the hip and thigh diet? Perfect condition, aside from tear stains. Signed. Reserve price: 20p and a Toffo, as even the seller realises that anything else would be taking the piss. No image available, even though there is one holiday snapshot which the wearer's partner likes to dance round the room with while the wearer, jumping up and down, tries to snatch it back so she can set fire to it. Bastard.

Lastly, one partner, quite solidly built and useful to have about the place so long as you don't need anything doing today, tomorrow or at any time in the future. Highly expert at hanging on to snapshots while someone else tries to snatch them. As new, except that he has been around a bit, ask anybody. His current lady may well wear a belted Forever Friends nightie to bed, but he has a peculiar fondness for diamond-patterned jumpers, so he's not got much to complain about, frankly. Reserve: Whatever. Plus, will deliver nation-wide, including Scottish highlands and islands. Will deliver world-wide, if it comes to it. Free p&p for as long as it takes.

Please log on and bid, as above items are bound to go quick, plus I need the money to, as usual, fritter it away on something that I'll never use because I can't be bothered with the instruction manual. I thank you.

d.ross@independent.co.uk

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