take the gilt off the gingerbread

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take the gilt off the gingerbread

To make something less attractive or appealing. Gingerbread was traditionally decorated before being sold. Have you seen her without any make-up on? Talk about taking the gilt off the gingerbread! I thought being a nurse would be all excitement, but three patients vomited on me on my first day, and that's really taken take the gilt off the gingerbread.
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take the gilt off the gingerbread

BRITISH, FORMAL
If something takes the gilt off the gingerbread, it spoils something that would otherwise be good. It was a fairly pleasant break, though a heavy cold did rather take the gilt off the gingerbread. Note: In the past, gingerbread was sometimes decorated with gilt, which is a very thin layer of gold.
See also: off, take

take the gilt off the gingerbread

make something no longer appealing.
Gingerbread was traditionally made in decorative forms that were then ornamented with gold leaf.
See also: off, take

take the gilt off the ˈgingerbread

spoil something so that you find it less attractive than before: He’s offered us his villa by the sea for two weeks. Unfortunately, we can only have it in January, which rather takes the gilt off the gingerbread. In the past, gingerbread was decorated with gilt or gold leaf (= a very thin sheet of gold).
See also: off, take