Silk undergarments and silk stockings - any silk coming in constant contact with the body - should be washed after every wearing, otherwise the body soil will in some degree rot the silk. If this rule is observed an astonishing amount of wear can be got out of a pair of good silk stockings or socks. Why not double the wear on either of these by the simple process of washing them out each night? All stockings need frequent washing, and should be mended before they are washed. If both these things are done, there will never be great gaping holes to darn. By the time the stockings reach that stage they are ready to go to pieces.

Shoes should be kept cleaned and polished or treated with whatever preserves best the material of which they are made, and shoe trees should be put in them the moment the shoes are taken off. When rubber heels wear down or leather heels wear off or grow crooked, they should be repaired or straightened. Shoes of good-material of course pay best, and if the sole wears out while the uppers are still good - as will happen with most people who walk on pavements - half-soling will be a justified economy.

This is not a book on the care of clothing, but it is impossible to write adequately of a budget for cloth ing without pointing out how to ensure adequate return for the money spent.

For the girls and women who enjoy sewing and who have the time for it, the money for clothes can be stretched by making collars, and other accessories or whole garments at home. Many attractive trimmings can be made at small cost. The woman who dislikes sewing and finds it a nervous strain should not attempt such work, and frequently it is a mistake for a woman who likes it to do much of it - when, for example, she is engaged all day outside the home in work that tires the eyes. There is no more reason why the woman who earns her own living should make her own clothes than there is why the man should make his. Usually, of course, she can do a little work of this kind and he, because of the nature of men's clothing, cannot make any of his. But if a woman keeps within her clothing budget and never touches a needle except for mending, she fulfills her obligation. If she has less dainty clothing or less of it than her fellow worker who likes to make underclothes and blouses and summer frocks, that is her affair.

There is one further point that needs consideration, and that is the amount of money that is tied up in clothing at any one time. The greater number of people have hanging in their closets or lying in their drawers partly worn garments that are "too good to give away" and yet in practice prove usually too poor to use. As one sees that undergarments, for example, are wearing out, one buys a few new ones. "I need new nightgowns." There are, say, six nightgowns in their proper drawer, of which three show distinct signs of wear. Two more are bought and put in the drawer, and then there are eight to be worn as they are needed. The three that gave warning are worn sometimes, but usually not as often as the others, and in consequence are still in the drawer after another six months or a year. Sometimes the same result is brought about by the purchase of a real bargain in nightgowns. This is an economy in itself, but results in a nightgown collection representing $16 instead of $12. There is a simple way of avoiding this difficulty without failing to be forehanded. Set a limit to the number of any given article that should be in wear at one time, and when the new articles are bought, put them in a storage drawer until those are actually worn out that are "almost gone." It is often surprising how long a time that will take. As each garment is discarded, replace it by one from the storage collection.

The same process should be used with suits, wraps and shoes. It is well to have a reserve of something that cannot be spoiled by rough wear, for some emergency that may arise, but otherwise what cannot be worn with fair frequency or made over, should be disposed of. If a shabby suit or a dress is worn only once or twice a year, it does not justify house-room, especially when it will meet a great need of some one less fortunate.

It is not necessary in order to make a clothing budget, but it is most helpful to make a complete inventory of one's own clothing, classified minutely, to set down the original cost, and to add up the sum. Most people have a greater amount of money than they realize tied up in this way. A very helpful thing is to have columns after the name of each item. In one column goes the number one actually has, in another the ideal number for one's needs, in a third, fourth and fifth the number one needs to buy every year, every other year and "once in a while" in order to keep up the ideal number. Other columns give the cost of what one has, the yearly, bi-yearly and occasional cost of what is to be bought to keep up the number. The last three columns will give the yearly clothing cost - by adding the sum for every year, half the sum for every other year, and a third of the "once in a while."

The following list shows the three columns of clothing needed, as worked out in 1917 by students in the School of Household Science and Arts of Pratt Institute who were preparing to teach dressmaking, millinery, and kindred subjects the following year. This out of date list is given because it is an excellent illustration of how easily readjustment may be made. To revise this list in price would have meant many changes in 1919, but not so many in 1921. It is to be hoped, however, that the teacher had her salary raised soon!

Wardrobe of Teacher Receiving $800.00 a Year (1917)

Every other year

Every other year |

Every year

One-third each year

Spring suit $25.00

Winter suit $30,001

1 blouse $6.00

Coat 30.00

School dress 18.00

to wear with suit purchased in current year 1 blouse 3.00

1 raincoat $15.00

Afternoon gown 25.00

Summer dress 12.00

1 skirt - wool 8.00

1 dark petticoat 3.00

1 doz. handks. 1.80

to be worn with suit blouse

1 pr. gloves 1.25

to wear with suit purchased previous year 3 hats 13.00

1 pr. dress shoes 5.00

1 pr. evening slippers 5.00

2 combination suits 2.00

2 nightgowns 2.00

2 winter

black suggested as most practical for annual gown 1 pr. bedroom slippers 1.00

1 dark petticoat 2.50

(1 school)

2 vests .70

(1 suit)

Total $83.00


1 spring

Evening gow 18.00

Spring dress 18.00

1 kimono 3.00

1 pr.storm rubbers .75

1 bathrobe or heavy gown 5.00

2 prs. school shoes 10.00

1 doz. handks. 1.80

1 umbrella 2.50

4 vests 1.40

1 tine nightgown 2.50

4 combinations 4.00

2 muslin petticoats 5.00

2 nightgowns 2 00

1 sweater 5.00

2 pr. corsets 5.00

1 apron .60

6 pr. stockings

1 purse 5.00

4 cotton 4.00

2 silk 3.00

1 dark petticoat 3.00

neckwear 1.50

2 pr. shields .50

Summer clothing $25.00

1 veil .25

2 pr. gloves l light pr. 1.25

1 heavy pr. 1.50




averaging 3) $57.60

1 year's expenditures $108.00 The next year $100.25

annually $19.20







Average yearly expenditure $221.27

Such a thorough going over is especially helpful in the planning of outer clothing. Men have less difficulty in this matter, but women or girls only too frequently find themselves without just the right dress for a given occasion, though they seem to have plenty of dresses hanging in the closet. Planning dresses by types will avoid this, and make provision for every social occasion one is likely to be called on to share. Fire insurance and burglar insurance on Clothing makes an inventory of some sort almost necessary. Insurance is taken usually in one sum to cover household equipment and clothing, and the cost of carrying it should be divided in right proportion between Care of House and Clothing-Accessories.