make a mess/hash of something/of doing something(redirected from make a mess of something)
make a mess (out) of (something)
To handle something in a way that causes it to be disordered, damaged, or ruined. I had these books all in order but the kids rifled through them and made a mess of the whole thing. I'm afraid the accounting department made a mess out of these numbers. We'll need to re-tally the entire ledger.
make a mess of something
Fig. to mess something up; to ruin something. Give it a try, but don't make a mess of it. Jerry made a mess of the kitchen.
make a hash of
Also, make a mess of. Ruin or spoil something, as in They've made a hash of their financial affairs, or She thought he'd make a mess of the garden. The first term, first recorded in 1833, uses hash in the sense of "a jumble of mangled fragments"; the variant, using mess in the sense of "a muddle" or "a state of confusion," was first recorded in 1862.
make a hash of somethingINFORMAL
If you make a hash of a job or task, you do it very badly. The Government made a total hash of things and wasted a small fortune. She fumbled with the trolley and made a hash of stacking the food trays.
make a hash ofmake a mess of; bungle. informal
Hash comes from the French verb hacher meaning ‘chop up small’. A hash is a dish of cooked meat cut into small pieces and recooked with gravy; from this comes the derogatory sense of hash meaning ‘a jumble of incongruous elements; a mess’.