a stitch in time saves nine

If you have heard the cliche a stitch in time saves nine, it is referring to doing something right away in order to avoid more work later on. A stitch is done on material when a thread comes loose; if you stitch it right away it will only require one stitch, but if you leave it, more threads will loosen and in time you need to do many stitches. This cliche is a way of showing the negative consequences of procrastinating.