The Making of a Trade School Part 7

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Orders are taken for a limited amount of trimmed hats in order to provide the students with experience in preparing, sewing on the tr.i.m.m.i.n.g, and in finishing the hat.

As millinery is a seasonal trade, students are advised to take, in addition, lamp and candle shade making in the Novelty Department, or straw sewing in the Operating Department. They are thus provided with good trades during the months when their own trade is dull.



(1) To teach the use of paste and glue in several good trades. (2) A short course in lampshade and candleshade making for girls who have a dull season in their regular trade during November, December, and January.

Lines of Work

Sample mounting, novelty work, jewelry and silverware case making, lampshade and candleshade making.

Trades and Wages

Sample mounting is pasting or gluing samples of all kinds of material on cards or in books to be used by salesmen in selling goods. New York is a center for this cla.s.s of work. It gives year-round employment to many girls, and offers wages from $5 to $15 a week. The simpler lines of sample mounting can be learned by almost any girl. A bright student can learn this trade in six months.

Novelty work is the covering and lining of cases and boxes with different materials. Girls can earn from $5 to $18 a week, and can learn the trade in from eight months to a year.

In jewelry and silverware case making the girls are taught both to cover and line up the cases; they earn from $5 to $15 a week. It takes from eight months to a year to learn this trade.

Lampshade and candleshade making: A short course is offered to good sewers who wish to learn a line of work that will give them employment during November, December, and January, which is the busy season in this occupation. Girls can earn from $1 to $2 a day. It is a very good course for millinery workers, as the work is similar and therefore easily learned, and the slack time in millinery is the busy time in this trade.

Course of Work

All pupils entering the Novelty Department take a short course in sample mounting to learn the use of paste and glue. Some are advanced soon to the novelty work, while others continue in sample mounting, taking up a greater variety of work along that line. Those entering for lamp and candle shade making do not take the sample mounting, but come from the millinery or sewing cla.s.ses, where they have had some training with the needle.

Interrelation with Academic and Art Work

In the academic cla.s.ses the girls are drilled in measurements and have problems estimating the cost of materials and labor. Their discussions pertain to actual processes and materials used in the cla.s.ses of the Novelty Department.

In the art cla.s.ses the girls are trained to draw straight lines and square corners, to miter corners, to fold on a line, to make good letters and figures, and to appreciate good proportions and balance.

This work enables the student to arrange her samples in straight lines on the card, with proper margins, and to print neatly on the card the name of the materials and stock numbers. The discussion of materials helps her to cut and place her materials on the cases so that the design will appear to the best advantage. The color work aids her in choosing the best hues of ribbons or linings to use with the figured coverings.


Where trade orders can be used without keeping the girls too long on the one problem, they prove a great incentive and also help them to acquire speed. Private orders give more variety in the work, and thus enable the girls to adjust themselves more easily to each season's new styles. The private orders, however, being smaller in number, do not help the students to acquire the speed that the repet.i.tion does in the large trade orders. Each kind of order work is used, as it can be of advantage to the development of the student.


The courses of work in the Art Department are shaped according to the needs of each trade department. Various phases of work in dressmaking, electric power operating, novelty, and millinery are made "centers of interest." Each girl thus finds her art aiding her to be more valuable in her trade. Her enthusiasm is awakened and she is stimulated to self-expression directly along the line of her chosen work. The entering students lack in the technical skill which can be used in their trades.

The first step, therefore, is to give the elementary exercises needed in their departments. This is followed by more difficult and more artistic work as the student shows ability.


To help the work of the trade departments, to improve the trade selected by each student, to give ideals.


Time of average student in art, seven months, three hours per week.

Previous art training little or none.


The students do not see or estimate correctly; they are not exact, and they lack ideals.

Organization of Art Work

I. _General_ course for _all_ students, connecting Art Department with Trade Courses. Approximate time, three months, three times a week.

1. Principles of Proportion: Measurements by ruler and free-hand.

Related lines and sizes, as in hems and margins.

2. General Use of Principles: (1) Horizontal, vertical, oblique lines for machine practice. (2) Related margins and spots as used in the writing of letters, the orderly placing of subject on a page.

3. Specific Department Work: Departments express their needs to Art Department. (1) Machine operating: (_a_) Lines--horizontal, vertical, oblique, for machine practice. (_b_) Quilting, banding, practice for curves and square corners.

(2) Sewing: (_a_) Lines--horizontal, vertical, oblique, for machine and hand practice and tailor basting. (_b_) Hems, tucks as prescribed by department and proportioned to garment. (_c_) Constructive drawing--giving different angles and figures with a view toward an intelligent use of patterns for waists and skirts.

(_d_) Piecing bias and mitering corners.

(3) Novelty: (_a_) Lines--horizontal, vertical, oblique, for sample mounting. (_b_) s.p.a.cings for sample mounting. (_c_) Letterings and figures for sample mounting. (_d_) Margins for pasting different shaped labels and samples. (_e_) Paper folding, mitering corners.

(4) Millinery: (_a_) Lines--horizontal, vertical, oblique, for hand sewing practice. (_b_) Problems for proportions for the wire frames.

(_c_) Bias facings and mitered and square corners. (_d_) Color.

Students unable to benefit further by the Art Work are dropped from course and devote this time to their trade.

II. _Supplementary_ course for students showing ability who have finished the prescribed departmental course. Approximate time, seven to nine months.

1. Machine Operating: (1) First step in designs, arrangement of straight lines in borders, and orderly arrangement of spots in borders. (2) Squared-off designs, stenciling same, for coordination.

(3) Sample curved line designs, continuous (limitation of machine and for speed). (4) Patterns for practice work for the special machine. (5) Special workers to practice the exercises for the Bonnaz machine. (6) Color--three charts. (7) Exercises for perforating.

2. Sewing: (1) Simple designs for shirtwaists and for braiding. (2) Designs for revers, cuffs, vests, and yokes. (3) Proportions of figure. (4) Copying from magazines for trade technicalities. (5) Discussions on dress for trade workers. (6) Color harmony in dresses and application.

3. Millinery: (1) Sketching different views of the hats. (2) Sketching models. (3) Color harmonies and application. (4) Discussions on how art principles can be applied to hats of the present day.

4. Novelty: (1) Simple, squared-off designs stenciled for coordination for hand and head, not gained in the trade work. (2) Simple illumination of words and phrases. (3) The materials and decoration to be used for pads, desk sets, and boxes discussed and carried out.

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The Making of a Trade School Part 7 summary

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