vol II date / index
St. Wilfrid, Bp. of York, A. D. 709.
Now come the long evenings with devices for amusing them. In the intervals of recreation there is "work to do." This word "work" is significant of an employment which astonishes men, and seems never to tire the fingers of their industrious helpmates and daughters; except that, with an expression which we are at a loss to take for either jest or earnest, because it partakes of each, they now and then exclaim, "womens' work is never done!" The assertion is not exactly the fact, but it is not a great way from it. What "man of woman born" ever considered the quantity of stiches in a shirt without fear that a general mutiny among females might leave him "without a shirt to his back?" Cannot an ingenious spinner devise a seamless shirt, with its gussets, and wristbands, and collar, and selvages as durable as hemming? The immense work in a shirt is concealed, and yet happily every "better half" prides herself on thinking that she could never do too much towards making good shirts for her "good man." Is it not in his power to relieve her from some of this labour? Can he not form himself and friends into a "society of hearts and manufactures," and get shirts made, as well as washed, by machinery and steam? These inquiries are occasioned by the following
LETTER FROM A LADY.
To the Editor of the Every-Day Book.
I assure you the Every-Day Book is a great favourite among the ladies; and therefore, I send for your insertion a calculation, furnished me by a maiden aunt, of the number of stitches in a plain shirt she made for her grandfather.
Stitching the collar, four rows 3,000 Sewing the ends 500 Button-holes, and sewing on buttons 150 Sewing on the collar and gathering the neck 1,204 Stitching wristbands 1,228 Sewing the ends 68 Button-holes 148 Hemming the slits 264 Gathering the sleeves 840 Setting on wristbands 1,468 Stitching shoulder-straps, three rows each 1,880 Hemming the neck 390 Sewing the sleeves 2,554 Setting in sleeves and gussets 3,050 Taping the sleeves 1,526 Sewing the seams 848 Setting side gussets 424 Hemming the bottom 1,104 Total number of stitches 20,646
in My aunt's grandfather's plain shirt,
As witness my hand,
Wavy Fleabane. Inula undulata.
Dedicated to St. Wilfred.