A woman lying on her stomach, drawn very freely, very simply quite a large drawing just the thing for such a room as hers is, amid chintz and eighteenth century inlaid or painted tables." "I wonder where she is going. Perhaps to see him." "At ten o'clock in the morning! More likely that she will call at her dressmaker's on her way to rehearsal. She is to sing Elizabeth to-morrow night."
You don't like this girl, do you?" "Of course I like her." "You know what I mean by 'like. And I hope I know what you mean. You always yearn over every creature who hasn't as much money as we have and needs ours. Sure it's no more than that this time? It would be just the limit, the outside edge and down the other side, if you fell in love with a dressmaker's model.
"Why, certainly," he replied. "Well, then, please look in at my dressmaker's, and tell her that I shan't go to try my gown on till to-morrow morning." It was a question of her wedding dress, a gown of light grey silk, the stylishness of which she considered very amusing. Whenever she spoke of it, both she and the others began to laugh.
She took an envelope from the desk and returning to the drawing-room slipped the duplicate mortgage within it and sealed it carefully. When, a few minutes later, a tall, dark, stolid-faced young man appeared, with a large dressmaker's box, she placed the envelope in his hand. "For Mr. Blaine," she whispered. "See that it reaches him immediately."
She singled out Harmony finally and called her. "Come and put on the American's gown," she ordered. "She wishes Heaven knows what she wishes!" Harmony went unwillingly. Nothing she had heard of the Fraulein Le Grande had prepossessed her. Her uneasiness was increased when she found herself obliged to shed her gown and to stand for one terrible moment before the little dressmaker's amused eyes.
A married lady who wishes it can keep two accounts at her dressmaker's; one is the account which her husband sees and pays; the other is the private account, which contains all the extravagant items, and which the wife pays secretly, by installments, whenever she can. According to our usual experience, these installments are mostly squeezed out of the housekeeping money.
The same writer has told us that so far from reproducing the ordinary costumes of his period Stevens took pains to seek exclusive and elegant examples, chefs d'oeuvres of the dressmaker's art, and that such were put at his service by the great ladies of the second empire. The beautiful muslin over-dress of the Dame en Rose is perhaps the one that most taxed his flexible brush.
When I tried to look at the dressmaker's skeleton it jiggled uncomfortably before my eyes. I didn't see the new guests once. Even Henrietta was allowed to speak to me only from across the hall. "Tonsilitis is catching, you know, my dear," Mrs. Morgan sweetly purred from heights above me, "and I'd never forgive myself if the other two girls caught anything here. I've forbidden Henrietta to see you.
There is an exquisite thoroughness in the way a milliner's or a dressmaker's work is done, a work such as clumsy man cannot rival, and can hardly estimate. No general plans his campaigns or marshals his armies better than some women of society the late Mrs. Paran Stevens, for instance manage the circles of which they are the centre.
I called to mind all the verses that tell how kind he is, and I just went and told him all about it, feeling as sure that he'd help me in some way as if I'd heard him say it. Sure enough he did! the very next day a lady advertised for an apprentice to learn the dressmaker's trade. I went, and she took me, and I got just in my right place.