So last week I went shopping for swimwear. Did you know that it’s almost impossible (except in a sports shop, where people presumbaly care about other features) to buy a swimsuit without something called “shape control panels” or “absolute tummy control” or “your total shape solution”? A total shape solution, by the way, seems to mean a special reinforced panel around the tummy region. I don’t like the idea much, partly because I’m obscurely irritated by amount of products which have become solutions. (Your complete coloured paper solution! Your ultimate clothes peg solution! Really, people?)

Divot unitsClockwise from top: 30 units, a stack of 12 units as yet unassembled, 12 units, 6 units, 6 units.

Anyway, this business of shaping solutions also annoys me because where a solution exists, the existance of a problem can be inferred. And what is a shape problem? It seems to be a synonym for having an abdomen. There are almost no swimsuits that don’t assume you need some kind of solution for your stomach region, however small a swimsuit you wear. It makes me sad. Tummies are not intrinsically problematic, are they?

These units will present you with a shape problem if you use paper that is almost-but-not-quite square. But they are quite easy to fold and quite pretty, I think. Would you like some diagrams? There could be diagrams. Sorry, I should have said – there could be a complete diagram solution. If someone volunteers to test-fold them (offers a test-folding solution?) to see if they make sense.

Now I’m off to find a solution to the problem of washing up. I think it probably involves washing the dishes, don’t you?