There was a joke running about in Russia some years ago when they did a sudden about face about Stalin being anything to be proud of and took down all the statues and it was whispered “but we kept the head just in case”
I still use that concept that if I have a project where an intermediat piece would be very difficult to reproduce I “keep the head” and store it someplace safe as who knows what tomorrow will bring.
More than a few times that habit has saved my tail when something happened that I did not see in time. In inkscape I often do this by turning off the object in the object list by poking it in the eye. In this way the object stays but is invisable and does not affect the GFUI or show up in any way there, but if needed is still available by poking the little eye thing in the object list.
In this case if the person came back and wanted something different that what you understood at the time all you need do is unhide it and there it is.
When a piece is complex I will put the parts in a group before hiding them. This also makes it easier to sort out later.