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Hicks, Ada / Garment construction in schools

Part V: Appendix on general mending and renovation,   pp. [170]-184 ff. PDF (4.6 MB)

Page 171

materials," or " small repairs of buttons and button-holes,"
and for each child 
to bring from home a suitable garment needing repair of the kind chosen.
  Unfortunately, in many neighbourhoods, there is from various causes, very
great difficulty in getting garments from the children's own homes, and as
this is a matter beyond the control of the teacher, to a great extent, all
can be done is to supplement the supply as much as possible from other sources.
    Class demonstrations should be an important feature in all lessons of
character. The children should be encouraged to suggest the necessary steps
in the work, and the pros and cons of alternative methods should be discussed,
for one great aim in such teaching is to arouse keen interest and pride in
work. The natural childish feeling that mending is not as interesting or
important as making, can only be dispersed by the enthusiasm which can be
roused in this way. 
    A good plan in poor districts is to keep a school mending-bag of odd
of material, calico, flannel, buttons, etc., from which the children may
and use what they need for any particular purpose. The judgment called 
forth when choosing has an educative value of its own, and in very poor homes
a lack of repairing material is one cause of the neglect observable. Such
bag should contain the better parts of discarded garments, as well as pieces
of new stuff, so that the wisdom of pairing "old wine and old bottles
" may 
be inculcated. 
     General Principles to be observed in Mending. As opportunity occurs,
there are certain principles upon which stress should be laid-points so obvious
to grown-ups-but the neglect of which so often causes childish failures.
     i. The ground has often to be cleared before mending proper can be 
commenced. This applies in very many cases, e.g. even in the sewing on of
a button, there are generally loose threads which must first be drawn out,
or in replacing a broken tape, the remaining bits still attached must be
     In more difficult kinds of mending, as in the darning of a hole which
been darned before, it is often advisable to draw out all the old threads
starting the new darn. 
     In patching near a seam, e.g. under the arms of chemises and camisoles,
 the seam should be undone before the patch is placed in position, so that
 side of the patch may be continuous with the seam of the garment. 

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