ACET Idiom of the Week!

This week’s idiom is as Tough as old Boots!


This idiom has two different meanings.

If you describe someone as tough as old boots, then they are strong and don’t get hurt easily.

Example sentence:
A: How is John after his surgery?
B: He’s fine, you know him, he’s as tough as old boots.

If you enjoy eating a tender steak, then you wouldn’t want one that is difficult to eat or cut into. It also could be described as tough as old boots.

Example sentence:
Waiter: How is your steak, sir?
Customer: I’m afraid it is as tough as old boots, I can’t even cut it.

Below are links to two interesting articles which use the expression in an authentic way:-

ACET Idiom of the Week!

This week’s idiom is Dressed to Kill!
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This idiom means to get really dressed up in fancy clothes in order to be noticed.

It is believed that this expression comes from the early 1900s.  When women get really dressed up, they can make other women die with envy and men die from heart palpitations because they look so well.

You can put it in a sentence as follows:-

  1. All the young people at the disco were dressed to kill.
  2. The actress was dressed to kill upon receiving her award.

I think because there is such high fashion nowadays that everyone is dressed to kill. 🙂



ACET Idiom of the Week!

This week’s idiom is Mutton dressed as Lamb!

MuttonThis idiom is used to describe an older woman who dresses in clothes made for much younger women.

It is believed that this saying comes from many years ago, around World War Two, when people having dinner used to dress up the cheap old mutton roast to look like prime lamb but everyone knew it didn’t look well.


Terry told his mother that just because she was going to the nightclub with her friends, it didn’t mean that she should look like mutton dressed as lamb.

Sandra: “Do you think that she looks good in that outfit?”

Mary: “No, not at all.  Those clothes are designed for young people.”

Sandra: “I agree.  She looks like mutton dressed as lamb.

It doesn’t mean that we should stop feeling young on the inside. 🙂  Have a great afternoon!


ACET Idiom of the Week!

This week’s idiom is Under the Weather!

under the weatherThis phrase can be used to refer to someone who is feeling ill or sick.

The phrase is thought to have maritime or sea related origins and comes from olden times when a sailor was sick and used to go below deck to get out of the weather. The sickness would probably have been seasickness or sickness caused by bad weather.


  • She is feeling under the weather since she returned from holidays
  • I’m not going to to the cinema tonight, I’m a little under the weather


ACET Idiom of the Week!

This week’s idiom is The Tide has Turned!

waveThe tide has turned or the turning of the tide means that something that was relatively constant has now changed.

The phrase comes from when the sea tide changes from high tide to low tide or vice versa – this is called the turning of the tide or when the tide turns. Its origin as an idiom is thought to have come from William Shakespeare’s Henry V (

Nay, sure, he’s not in hell: he’s in Arthur’s bosom, if ever man went to Arthur’s bosom. A’ made a finer end and went away an it had been any christom child; a’ parted even just between twelve and one, even at the turning o’ the tide: for after I saw him fumble with the sheets and play with flowers and smile upon his fingers’ ends, I knew there was but one way; for his nose was as sharp as a pen, and a’ babbled of green fields.

Some examples of its use are as follows:

  • The home team were losing the game but after half time the tide turned and the scored the winning goal.
  • The colour pink was very popular in fashion last season but how quickly the tide has turned, this season everybody is wearing purple!