A Word To The Wise: Six Essential Tools For The Upkeep Of One's House

A good butler knows all the tricks of the trade to run a household - and the tools needed to do the job. These items, suggested by London-based independent store Labour and Wait, make a splendid start!

The Omniscient Mr Thompson

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the smooth running of a household inspires the utmost satisfaction (to all at Penhaligon’s, anyway). Yet one may find themselves short on time for chores or lack the proper tools to keep one’s home in tip-top condition. Perhaps it’s time to channel your inner-Omniscient Mr Thompson, the butler of the Portraits Mansion, and brush up on your domestic duties.

Here are Penhaligon’s rules for the assiduous upkeep of one’s humble abode – and the timeless yet trusty tools to help you on your way, as recommended by our dear friends over at Labour and Wait.


Cleanliness (Of One's Shoes) Is Next to Godliness

A butler must ensure the entire house, from the attic to the cellar, is always presentable. We suppose the same could be said of the people residing there, so let’s start with one's shoes. When Penhaligon’s asked our trusted advisors over at Labour and Wait, they suggested pairing a British-made Boot Brush with Huberd’s Shoe Grease for optimum results. The family shall be looking spick and span in no time at all.​

Labour & Wait Spice Jars

Ensure A Well-stocked (And Well-organised) Pantry

The kitchen is the heart of many a home, and often needs a little more love than other rooms. Once the groceries are unpacked and your cupboards are positively bursting, one might need to consider a little organisation. Labour and Wait have prescribed their traditional Spice Jars to do the job: these little jars are perfect for keeping your herbs and spices in order. Each jar shall be bursting with fragrant riches in no time (which is incredibly appealing to Penhaligon’s, as you can imagine).​

And One Mustn't Forget The Silverware

Let’s turn one’s attention to the ornaments for a moment. Not a speck of dust ought to be visible, and all reflective surfaces should positively shimmer. Perhaps a high-quality Polishing Cloth will do just the trick, and is a favourite for polishing windows, mirrors and furniture. Let’s run that finger along the picture frame, now.

Labour & Wait Dinner Table

Familiarise Oneself With A Proper Dinner Table Setting

When it comes to entertaining, a butler is like a conductor, orchestrating a symphony of hospitality. On his cue, the dishes come out. Wine is poured (and poured again, hurrah!). But before all that, he must ensure the scene is set. Placemats and plates, cutlery and crockery... but what’s that from the kitchen, a sizzling hot pan!? Protect your darling dinner table with a Japanese Pot Stand, a hand-woven straw mat prepared to bear the brunt of burns. No scorch marks shall distract from your beautifully laid table setting. Let’s hope the food is just as delicious...

Keep Calm And Carry On

One could argue the golden rule for any butler is to be utterly unflappable. Nothing can ruffle the feathers of one who is always prepared. Expect the unexpected, old chap. The boiler breaks. A leak springs. Smoke rises from one’s automobile. None of these trivial troubles are any bother when one is sporting a Canvas Tool Holster brimming with the solutions to any household tribulations.

Take Care Of Oneself Before Looking After Others

How can you possibly attend to your guests without first being well-groomed yourself? A simple routine for your toilette shall do the trick. A spot of primping and preening as the sun rises, followed by a spritz of your favourite Penhaligon’s scent, of course!


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