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The flounced skirts edged with narrow lace or with insertions of lace or embroidery, and the embroidered gowns, are not so expensive as might be supposed. There are many designs of embroidery that are effective and not coarse, which make charming frocks and are quite possible for home dressmakers. These, made with low and high waists, are possible for afternoon and evening wear.
There are many daintily figured muslins to be found which are quite attractive enough to make up with two waists, and quite smart enough for evening entertainments when made with a low waist. If the design is effective enough these do not require any lace at all on the skirt, and the
Elderly lady's Dimity Gown trimmed with black ribbon; skirt has three deep tucks, each edged with the ribbon.
The combination waist AND Protticoat used by all the smart children's dressmakers to make the dress hang well.
bertha or fichu can be edged with lace instead of being made entirely of it. Twelve and one-half cents is certainly a reasonable price for a pretty muslin, and among last year's colors and designs there are many to choose from at that price which make the daintiest of frocks. The general effect of the more elaborate gowns this season is that they are quite impossible to copy. In reality they are very easy, for there is so little fitting to be done on the waists or jackets. In all sorts of materials a very effective style of gown has a skirt with a plain front breadth and pleated sides and back, or gathered and shirred sides and back. Then there is a loose jacket that has a most extraordinary resemblance to the old-fashioned bed-sacque, with long shoulder seams, wide sleeves, and loose fronts and back. This is unlined, unless the material is veiling, when a thin lining is necessary; and it is worn over a linen, lawn, or lace waist, the sleeves of which are large and show below the loose sleeves of the jacket. The jacket must, however, be fitted in at the side seams, and the fronts must also be shaped, although apparently shapeless—otherwise the effect is rather ludicrous. This is made up in most expensive materials, but is also made in everything that is inexpensive — veiling, linen, cotton duck (for it is a pattern that can easily be laundered), and in silk.
The shirt-waist costume popular for so long a time is in great danger of being swept out of existence, owing to the exaggerated amount of trimming that is now used with it. The idea in the beginning was that it should be a simple costume with skirt and waist to match, the only trimming a little narrow collar and cuffs that could be taken off and laundered. The present shirt-waist suit is trimmed with bands of embroidery, with lace, rows of velvet ribbon, or taffeta, and is absolutely unsuited for the purpose for which it was originally designed; but it is one of those cases where sensible-minded individuals will be original and will stick to the practical and possible.
The shirt-waist suit of foulard or even of taffeta silk, made without trimming and on the original design, is becoming, useful, and most practical. The skirt can be made with pleats or gathered flounces, or in box-pleated or side-pleated effect; the waist after the favorite model of shirt-waists, but as simple
GIRL's press of deep buff linen strapped with V’s of red linen and bands of red embroidery on buff; white lawn guimpe.
Thin summer down for an old lady; black and white muslin made over white, and trimmed with black taffeta ribbons.
as possible. There should be a thin lining across the shoulders and the fronts of the waist, because in hot weather these parts of a waist so soon become soiled; but no other lining is necessary except for a very stout woman. In regard to the question of lining, any gown intended for summer wear for a stout woman should have a lining through the body of the waist, and this should be of some material that has considerable strength and will not “pull.” It can be of taffeta, percale, nearsilk, or any one of the new linings; but the sleeves should be lined with the thinnest batiste, lawn, or India silk. The collar and narrow yoke should be of lace, unlined. Made in this way, the waist will be very little warmer than if it had no lining, and will be infinitely more becoming to a stout woman. Veiling, or voile, as it is called this year, is a practical material, and there are so many different qualities and grades that it would seem as though every woman in the universe might have a gown made of it. The favorite trimmings are lace and velvet ribbon.
ELF-GOVERNMENT, to a girl who has been living for some eighteen or nineteen years according to the ideas of her more or less exacting parents and teachers, has a most alluring sound. It seems on a par with latch-keys, bank accounts, and the other badges of emancipated womanhood. It promises cessation of obedience and a pleasant existence of do-as-you-please, with no prohibitions to mar its bliss—a kind of discreet anarchy in which one's own wishes are supreme. It is to be hoped that the average mortal's idea of heaven will not be so rudely dispelled beyond St. Peter's gate, as such a girl's when she enters a self-governed college. Among the first events of her new life is a mass-meeting where she listens with her classmates to an earnest talk by the president of Self-government. She learns that, now she is a Freshman, she must put away childish things and conduct herself accordingly. Self-government is a great trust. She must show she appreciates it and not shirk her duties and requirements. The traditions of the college, its very honor, she is warned, are in her keeping. Let her see that she lives up to the principles of self-government and does not bring the system to dishonor. After this meeting, the Freshman with a well-developed conscience has a sense of corporate responsibility that makes the exactions of her previous life seem light indeed, nor does her responsibility grow less from the first time that she is called upon to “proctor” until she reaches the high places in the Selfgovernment Association. The girl with a thirst for independence, on the other hand, recognizes with a sigh that hers is to be only a tempered freedom, and she has well-defined hints of various unpleasant occurrences and the low opinion of the college community, if she does not accept the conditions. A college is such a mixture of alien elements that the question of government is one to puzzle an educational Solomon. In one corner of a college house, one year, were six girls, as different as training and dispo
sitions could make them. Two had been brought up in the strictest fashion, obeying their elders dutifully, speaking when they were spoken to, and gracing the family table only for dessert. They had never had any spending-money, and with a term's allowance in their pockets at once, it was no more than natural that they should lose their heads and revel in sodas and hot wastles until at the end of a week they had just three cents left to last them through the term. The day after, one of them broke her shoe-string. Ask for money they did not dare. So great was their horror of borrowing that in preference they took a white tape provided by their thoughtful mother, inked it, and made a shoe-string which was substantial if not ornamental. Next door to these sisters was a breezy, hearty young person from a Western ranch, who had never been commanded in her life. She could ride a horse like a man, and all her ideas and impulses were shaped according to the generous propriety of a new civilization. Next to her lived the pampered darling of doting parents, a pretty blue-eyed little Croesus, who supposed that money would buy her what she wanted in college, as it had elsewhere. Across the corridor was a boardingschool girl, accustomed to the rigid discipline of a city school, which provided good-night kisses from a discriminating teacher for the worthy, and “lines’’ for the unworthy, a penalty that meant studying while others were playing. Rooming with her was a minister's daughter. She was fitting herself to teach. She had much ambition and little money, and she needed all she could get tutoring and making blue prints at five cents apiece to meet her bare expenses. The composition of a group as small as this indicates the contrasts to be found throughout the college community. What is good for one girl is bad for another. Liberty for one is repression for her neighbor. Where a regulation frets the soul of some girl to distraction, it troubles her roommate not a whit. With all these different elements to con
sider and harmonize, it is small wonder that government is one of the most puzzling questions in college administration. Each woman's college has solved the problem in its own way, according to its individual needs, with the result that no two systems are exactly alike. But until twelve years ago they all had one characteristic in common—that the faculty made the rules for the students to obey. Then Bryn Mawr started out as pioneer in a new movement, and actually gave its students power to make and carry out their own rules. The principle of self-government, once introduced, has been steadily gaining ground. Wellesley students within the last few years have been granted full powers of government, and many of the other colleges show tendencies at least toward self-government. But to Bryn Mawr belongs the credit of having shown the way. Compared with a student in a faculty-governed college a Bryn Mawr girl seems to have a great deal of liberty. But when she passes through Pembroke Arch and becomes part of the community, housed in the beautiful Old English halls that give the Bryn Mawr campus its stateliness and distinction, she finds, in the first place, that she is a member of the self-government association whether she wishes it or not, and in the second place that past generations of self-governing students have left her a substantial legacy of rules and regulations. She learns that she may sit up all night if she pleases, but that a rule of the association makes quiet obligatory after ten. During study hours, also, she may suit her own pleasure about studying, but if she does not, she must respect the convenience of the girls who do, and be still. She may leave college when she pleases by registering her name and address, but for the sake of public opinion she is obliged by the association to conform to the social customs of those about her. She may not travel on trains at night or go to an evening entertainment without a chaperon, or do any of the other things which a conservative society forbids. After a time it dawns upon the girl that self-government, like any other democratic government, is seeking the greatest good for the greatest number, and that in this arrangement individual liberty must sometimes be curtailed. The greatest good for the greatest number in Bryn Mawr is obtained through the majority vote of the association. In the charter granted twelve years ago, by the trustees, the
association is given power to “deal with all those matters concerning the conduct of the members in their college life which do not fall under the jurisdiction of the authorities of the college or of the mistresses of the halls of residence.” The faculty, that is, confines itself to academic matters. The mistress of the hall, usually a Bryn Mawr graduate, keeps its domestic machinery running smoothly and is its social head, but for the conduct of the students she has no responsibility. With its power of making rules, of carrying them out, and of inflicting penalties, the association assumes the burden of keeping its members in the strait and narrow way. It is a very adjustable body. At one session it makes laws, at another it acts as a kind of supreme court to pass judgment on those who have broken them. The power of carrying out the rules and of interpreting the will of the association is put into the hands of its officers and of an executive board, consisting of the president of the association, the vicepresident, and three other members chosen from the graduates or the three upper classes. The executive board acts also as a lower court. All matters must be brought before this court first, and only after its decision is given may an appeal be made to the whole association sitting as a judicial body. An advisory board elected by ballot, composed of two members of each class, consults with the executive board on the request of one or more members of the executive board. The responsibility for carrying out the rules in the halls falls upon proctors, who are elected by each hall. The existence of self-government at Bryn Mawr is recognized vaguely by the new student, but she does not really understand what it means until it is individually applied to herself or some one she knows. “Proctoring ” has a new significance to her when, in the midst of a gala hour at the wrong time of day, a head pops in and a laughing voice says: “Girls, really, you know you are not the only people on the floor, and this happens to be study hour.” That is all the reproof the first time. If the offender is simply thoughtless, it is all she needs. If she goes out of town for the night without remembering to register her name and address, the dollar fine, which she pays as a penalty, serves to remind her the next time. But if she is deliberately breaking rules, the way of the transgressor becomes hard. The proctor, after giving her the benefit of the doubt a few times, asks her to report to the executive committee, which reprimands her as her offence deserves. She may appeal to the association acting as a higher court, but the association is more than likely to sustain the decision of the executive committee. If a girl wishes to remain in college, it is not wise to risk too much for the fun of breaking rules. The association has the power of recommending expulsion. It has not hesitated to use this drastic measure in a few extreme cases, and the trustees have invariably carried out the recommendation. This in itself is enough to make a girl think more than once before she tampers with the regulations imposed by self-government. Wellesley, which next to Bryn Mawr has been given the fullest powers of government, has adopted very much the same system. The Association for Student Government makes laws and acts as a higher court. The executive board, though formed somewhat differently, has the same duties as the Bryn Mawr board, and may consult at will with an advisory board. The college is so much larger than Bryn Mawr that it was necessary to subdivide authority and provide for a council in each house which should keep order in the house and impose penalties for the breaking of the house rules. This council is made up of the house president, the chairman of each floor, and the proctors appointed by them. In a number of other ways, also, Wellesley has worked out student government as its particular requirements dictated. If a student fails to register when she goes out of town, she is not punished by a fine as at Bryn Mawr, but by losing her privilege of registering altogether for a time. Another point of difference is the rule made by the Wellesley association, that no student who has not diploma grade, which means a very high rank of scholarship, can be a class president, a member of the executive board, president of the athletic association, or, in fact, be eligible for any of the most important and desirable positions, defined by the association as major offices. This is a hard rule for a girl whose ambition and popularity exceed her scholarship, but if she is able to keep free from conditions she can still be elected to minor offices, which for honor and prominence are only a step below the major offices. The possibility of overloading a competent and popular girl with positions requiring time and work the
association meets, partially, by not allowing one student to hold more than two major offices or two minor offices except by special decision of the executive board. Vassar, though it has not yet, by any means, given the students as full powers of government as Bryn Mawr or Wellesley, is working out its problem in very interesting ways. When the charter was granted the ten-o'clock rule was suspended, and the students made responsible for keeping the houses quiet after ten at night and during study hours in the daytime. The association is responsible for “order and decorum in the buildings and on the campus,” a short phrase which covers much. A student wishing to go away from the college has the privilege of registering three times a term; after that she must ask permission from the lady principal. The functions of the executive committee at Bryn Mawr and Wellesley are filled at Vassar by the committee on self-government, among whose members all four classes are represented. As penalties for breaking the rules, a girl may be removed from any committee on which she is serving, she may be obliged to change her room or to go off the campus for a while, or she may be put under faculty supervision. She then loses all her privileges and is compelled to ask permission for everything she wants to do. An experiment which makes girls their own law-makers, judges, and policemen is bound to be an interesting one, and self-government furnishes much food for reflection. The problems of college conduct and college discipline are full of perplexities. Self-government does not solve them; it simply shifts them. The students instead of the faculty have the settling of them. The Wellesley Freshmen every fall have caused the college authorities much concern. They live in the town because there is no room for them on the campus, and the result has never been quite satisfactory. The new girls, who most need the forming influence of the college, have been most remote from it. They have kept their old standards and their old way of doing things, because the new standards were not presented with sufficient force to displace them. At the end of the year, even, they have sometimes understood no more of the real spirit of the college than at the beginning. With self-government the faculty passed over the responsibility for these Freshmen to the students. They met it as well as they could. They sent