Designing. A figure or representation of some character must be originated and drawn suited to every class of cloth that is woven. This is called designing. The artist first sketches the design for a fabric on plain paper, then transfers it to finely-ruled paper, painted in the exact colors that are to appear in the cloth, having due regard for economy in weaving. Designing silks and fine woolen goods is something that employs and pays well for much of the best artistic talent in France and England. A pattern that "takes," means fortune to the mill that makes it. Nearly every mill has its own pattern makers, and guards jealously the fruits of their labors. A pattern cannot be protected by letters patent, and in consequence of this a custom has sprung up throughout the trade of copying or adopting the patterns of competitors in the production of fabrics. This appropriation of designs of other mills is universally followed, so that it is about as fair for one as for another, so far as taking an advantage is concerned. Foreign manufacturers have complained for several years past that they have no protection against the American manufacturer who, as soon as the new goods are placed on the market, proceeds at once to bring out the same identical patterns in a much inferior cloth. This, when placed alongside of the imported fabric, appears to all intents and purpose fully as handsome and elegant, and is quickly taken up by the lower classes, who always desire to appear as well dressed as their more fortunate sisters. The result is that their expensively originated fabric is practically killed, for as soon as the fabric becomes common, so to speak, the best trade will not use it any longer, and this cause is responsible for the heavy losses which are frequently sustained by importers in closing out the season's novelties. There are several agencies in Paris and other leading trade and fashion centres of Europe which make a business of supplying samples of foreign manufacturers' new styles to the manufacturing trade of this country, some charging a certain figure per 100 samples, while others have a subscription price per year, they agreeing to furnish samples of everything new as fast as placed on the market. The majority of our mills producing dress goods, silks, wash fabrics, etc., subscribe to the agencies referred to, and from the samples received are able to secure many novel effects and unique designs, and there is no denying the fact that the same are of great assistance to our home manufacturers. They, however, when bringing out their duplicated productions of these same samples, are very chary about showing them openly until the season's output has been well placed, as with competition so strong as at the present time should a rival mill discover any special pattern was going well, the chances would be that a reproduction of it would appear, perhaps in a cheaper cloth, practically killing the sale of the finer article. Among the weavers of Lyons, St. Etienne and other great weaving centres of France, much attention is devoted to anything in any way connected with the beautiful, either in the figure or the color of textiles. Weavers may be seen in their holiday leisure gathering flowers and grouping them in the most engaging combinations. They are constantly suggesting new and tasteful designs to their employers, and are thus the fruitful source of elegant patterns. Hence the French flower patterns are remarkably free from incongruities, being copied from nature with scientific precision. This constitutes one of the chief secrets of French manufacturing prosperity, for so long as Fashion worships at the shrine of beauty, enough people will be found to purchase the fabrics of France, even though France should be prohibited from purchasing those of other countries. Fashion is to France what the mines of Peru were to Spain, what the wheat fields of India are to England, what the cotton industry is to the South. In both France and England under the fostering care of their respective governments have been planted many schools of design, where boys and girls are taught the art of originating and drawing beautiful patterns for the textile manufacturers. For hundreds of years England, especially, has encouraged and assisted her people to become more proficient in the art of designing, hence it is small wonder that she has such a tremendous power in the commercial world; for an elegant pattern will always induce the sale of a fabric with less difficulty than superior quality. No other people make such intelligent, well-directed, persistent and long continued efforts in this direction as they. While we Americans pile up the tariff mountain high in a vain endeavor to bolster up our manufacturing interests, the English educate their artists to make a beautiful pattern, and the result is that the goods possessing the most elegant designs invariably have the preference. There are probably more technical schools devoted to textile interests in England, than in all the rest of the world put together. The time has come in the history of textile manufacture in the United States, when "we must educate or perish."