How to solve the servant question

Published on Author Lacing MentorLeave a comment

Dear Sir, – The letters in your up-to-date paper on smartly dressed maidservants prompt me to write about a friend of mine who has adopted this policy with great success. By ordering unusual high wages she was able to have her pick of fifty or sixty applicant, and finally choose a tall fair girl, whose striking appearance and admirable figure were just what she was looking for. The prospect of receiving good pay and all her clothe induced the girl to readily accept my friend’s conditions, which were that she must, while on duty, dress as required by her mistress, and in particular submit to the training of her figure by means of tight-lacing. Her duties were purposely limited to acting as her mistress’s personal maid, waiting at table, and receiving and announcing visitors, so as to permit of an intensive course of day and night corseting, which was at once commenced.
This was eighteen months ago. Alice, the maid, now has a waist of seventeen inches, and as she is a finely developed girl the contrast between her waist and the full curves of her figure is really startling. Her long rigid corsets compel an erectness of carriage and a dignity of movement, which are as unusual as they are impressive. Perhaps she is seen to best advantage when, having opened the door, she conducts and announces you to her mistress.
My friend’s drawing–room, like so many in London, is on the first floor, and to reach it one must ascend a double flight of stairs. To follow Alice up these stairs is to receive a lesson in elegance and ease of movement. Lest the corsets should not sufficiently define her figure, her black satin frocks are specially cut to fit her like a glove. Ascending a flight f stairs is even more difficult, but Alice accomplishes it as though clad in a loose pleated frock.
It is no wonder if my friend sometimes half-jokingly says that people come to her house less to see her than her maid. To watch the latter moving about the room with perfect grace despite her stiff corsets, short, tight skirt, and high heels is a treat few could resist. When you add to grace of movement, a tiny waist, shingled golden hair, and a pretty face enhanced by powder and paint, you must admit that Alice has a good reason to be happy and contended as my friend has to be proud of her protégée. Alice knows that she is chic, attractive, and admired, and if more girls could feel that domestic service would lose most of its terrors and mistresses their chief nightmare.
Yours truly,
“SMART SERVICE”

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