In this week’s podcast, you’ll learn 19 useful idioms connected to clothes so that you can expand your vocabulary and improve your English whatever you are wearing!
What is an idiom?
A group of words that have a meaning that’s different from the meaning of the individual words. For example, “to be over the moon” = to be extremely happy and “to see the light” = to understand, to finally come to a realization.
at the drop of a hat (without hesitation) – “In the US, people often file lawsuits at the drop of a hat.”
to take your hat off to someone (to acknowledge someone’s achievement or skill) – “I don’t like Peter that much, but I take my hat off to him when it comes to planning events – he’s meticulous.”
to put your thinking cap on (To think very hard about something, especially a solution to a problem.) – “We’re running out of ideas for podcast episodes, so please put your thinking caps on and send us some ideas.”
to keep your shirt on (to remain calm and wait for something) – “Alright, keep your shirt on, Craig, the chocolate cake will be here soon enough!”
to wear your heart on your sleeve (To openly display or make known one’s emotions or sentiments.) – “She’s one of these people who wears her heart on her sleeve. I always know what she’s feeling.”
off the cuff (an off-the-cuff remark) Casually and spontaneously; without planning or preparation) – “The Prime Minister’s off-the-cuff remarks to the press have been getting him in a lot of trouble.”
with all the frills (with added perks or luxuries) – “Not only does his job pay $100,000 a year, but it also comes with all the frills, like a generous expenses budget, expensive company car and free worldwide health insurance.”
no frills (basic, with no added luxury) – “I bought a really cheap flight to Dublin with an Irish no-frills airline, but it didn’t include any baggage allowance.”
to be hanging by a thread (to be in a very dangerous state or situation) “Since he wrote that sexist tweet, his future in the company has been hanging by a thread.”
to hit someone below the belt (very insulting and unfair) – “During the divorce, my wife hit me below the belt with some unfair comments about my social drinking habits.”
to tighten your belt (adjust to a more modest lifestyle) – “Now that I’ve lost my job and have no income I need to tighten my belt and stop eating in fancy restaurants.”
to wear the trousers (to be the dominant partner in a relationship) – “There’s no doubt who wears the trousers in my house!”
to pull your socks up (to make an effort to improve your work, performance, or behaviour) – “If you don’t pull your socks up before the end of the year, you won’t get a Christmas bonus.”
to put a sock in it (stop talking) – “Are you still chattering at midnight? Put a sock in it please and go to sleep!”
to zip it (stop talking) – “Heh loudmouth, shut up! Just zip it, would you!”
the shoe’s on the other foot (when a situation has changed to the opposite of what it was before) – “I used to ask my sister for advice, but now the shoe’s on the other foot and she comes to me.”
to be in someone’s shoes (to be in the situation, usually a bad or difficult situation, that another person is in) “I wouldn’t like to be in Mike’s shoes when the boss hears what he’s done!”
to dig your heels in (to resist stubbornly; to refuse to give in.) – “I was offered 5,500 euros for my car, but I’m digging my heels in and holding out for 6,000.”
to get your knickers in a twist (to become upset or annoyed unnecessarily) – “Don’t shout at me just because I turned the TV volume down a bit. Don’t get your knickers in a twist about it!”
…and now it’s your turn to practise your English.
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In next week’s episode: How to reach a C2 Proficiency level of English with Fabio from fabiocerpelloni.com
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The music in this podcast is by Pitx. The track is called ‘See You Later’