carine hartman 2021

By Carine Hartman

Chief sub-editor


Nothing like ‘lappieskombers’ for cold winter season

They are all you need to sleep warm, one blanket, this blanket.


It’s not often I shop for clothes, but I’ll be the girl you’ll eye weirdly in the aisle.

I don’t only look and touch, I physically sniff garments.

Don’t ask me why, but somehow my smell is connected to texture, and I’m a texture girl, nothing like the feel of cotton or the smell of my sun-kissed bed linen.

Maybe it’s that sun I’m hoping to smell in the mall aisles, and that’s a smell no synthetic material can give me.

But, like with all rules, I have a rubber arm or, in this case, nylon. I just love the quilt my mom made for me à la ’70s style.

Random nylon pieces are stitched in all their ugliness into long strips joined together. And in true nylon fashion, all sport bold embossed patterns and garish colours.

Bright pinks are competing with 50 shades of green and some sickly yellows and purples thrown in. But my bed is draped in its Joseph and his amazing technicolour dreamcoat and still looks fabulous nearly 50 years later.

Because, if you didn’t know, nylon colours don’t fade. Ever. What does fade is the stitching and backing, so I have, over the years, patched here and there and put on the odd new backing, which added weight to my heirloom – a lot of it.

So, every winter I pack away the duvet and out comes Mamma’s lappieskombers because that’s all you need to sleep warm: one blanket; this blanket.

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And it makes me woke, hip, cool, with it, if you can believe my daughter. We’re talking bitter cold during Zoom and she is amazed that I use only one blanket. “We have the duvet and two blankets here for the Cape rain.”

“Maybe it’s the weight?” I said.

And that’s when I heard about the “new trend” of weighted blankets.

“Go google it, mom. They cost an arm and a leg, but that’s what everyone now ‘must have’,” she tells me.

Silly kids. Haven’t they heard of nylon and a couple of new backings?

I pick at some stitch curling up on a loslappie and see my backing from four winters ago is also coming loose at the seams.

It seems there’s money to be made here.

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