The brush requires to be squarely and equally cut, and to be kept moderately clean. If Indian ink is used, the largest surface of the cake should be taken to rub the moist brush upon, to get it equally diffused and softened with colour. A cheap kind of ink is sold with stencil plates, which answers better than Indian ink, as it runs less upon the drawing and presents a larger surface to the brush.

After the plate has been in use some time, the fine lines and corners become clogged with ink, which may easily be removed by soaking the plate a short time in warm water, and afterwards lightly brushing it upon a flat surface until quite clean. It must be parti-cularlv observed that a cloth should at no time be applied to the plate either to clean or to wipe it, as this would be almost certain to catch in some of the perforations, and probably spoil the plate.

If the plate by improper use becomes cockled, it may be flattened, if laid upon a hard flat surface, by drawing a cylindrical piece of metal, as, for instance, the plain part of the stem of a poker, firmly across it several times on each side of the plate.

In using the stencil plate, hold it firmly to the drawing by one edge only, in no instance allowing the fingers to cross to the opposite edge. The general method is, to place the fingers of the left hand along the bottom edge. When the brush is diffused with ink, so that it is just moist, lightly brush it upon a book-cover or pad, so as to free the points from any excess of colour. In Applying the brush to the plate, it should be held quite upright, and moved, not too quickly, in small circles, using a constant, equal pressure, as light as appears necessary. The stencilling should be commenced at one end of the plate and proceeded with gradually to the other, moving onwards as the perforations appear filled with colour, being particularly careful not to shift the fingers placed upon the plate during the operation. If the plate is very long, after each word the fingers may be shifted, if the plate be held down during the time firmly by the other hand. Should there not be quite sufficient ink in the brush to complete the device, the plate may be breathed upon, which will moisten the ink attached to the plate.

If, after the plate is removed, the device appears light in parts, the plate may be replaced and the defects remedied, iĄ very great care be taken to observe that the previous stencilling perfectly covers the perforations.

In stencilling words or numbers with the separate letters of the alphabet, draw a line where the bottoms of the letters are intended to come, take the separate letters as required and place them upon the line, so that the line just appears in the perforations. That the letters may be upright, it is best that the next letter on the slip used should also allow the line to appear in it. The required distance of the letters apart must be judged of by the eye, a pencil mark being made, after each letter is completed, to appear in the perforation on the near side of the next letter to be stencilled.

With care, a stencil plate will last in constant use for many years; without care, it is practically spoilt by taking the first impression.