To women in all walks of life sewing is one of the most useful skills that can be acquired. More than that, it is a source of lasting personal satisfaction. The quiet passage of needle and thread, forming a straight seam or an ornament to beautify, is a form of meditation suitable for servants of Beauty – needle-work is, in fact, equally a spiritual pursuit as it is a practical one. Besides neatness and good repair of clothes, true satisfaction and cheerfulness of spirit are connected with these quiet and congenial pursuits.
While the more delicate efforts of the needle rank high among accomplishments, its necessary departments should not be considered beneath the notice of the most refined lady. (Embroidery and ornamental needlework deserve an entire chapter of their own, and will be talked about in-depth later.) If your means do not permit you to have your clothes made-to-measure, the offerings of current mode offend your sensibilities in their utter disregard for beauty, and suitable ‘vintage’ clothes are not available in your area or size, sewing makes it possible to always be perfectly dressed. Even if it is not necessary to make your own clothes from scratch, it is wise and economical to obtain knowledge of methods by which the various articles of apparel are repaired, modified and renovated. For example, by being able to modify yourself the length of hemline to suit your figure, without the expense of employing a professional seamstress, you already save a sum of money which will enable you to purchase a pretty silk flower or a new pair of nylons. And thus you reap a two-fold, no, three-fold benefit: increased self-confidence since you have useful skills, neater appearance because of the correct hemline, and more stylish appearance because you can now afford the silk flower or stockings which otherwise would have misbalanced your clothing budget. Moreover, knowledge of fabrics, pattern-cutting and procedures of sewing allow you to judge the quality of ready-made clothes accurately.
You are advised to acquire a good guide book, enroll in a sewing class or enlist the help of a friend or relative skilled in sewing, for while it is possible to obtain knowledge and skill in sewing through trial and error, much time and valuable material is lost. Even if you sew alone, in any case you will need a friend to take your vital measurements, upon which the precise and correct fit of clothes being made depends.