586 The Book of Indoor and Outdoor Games
day she is condemned to anything so uncompromising, so little adapted to her purpose as leather ! But, as she must not infringe upon the peculiar features and prerogatives of other feasts reminiscent of that day of days, she must cudgel her wits to evolve something that is not too ugly and yet will conform to the rules which have been made by no one knows whom, but which have been accepted long enough to make them in a measure binding.
The choice of entertainments is very limited. A reception would give little opportunity to emphasise the character of the celebration, for whatever leather articles might be added to the room would be accepted as part of its usual furnishing. As all efforts to be effective must be concentrated on the table, a dinner would give the best opportunity for their display.
The centrepiece may be a basket of burnt leather, filled with whatever flowers are in season, or with maidenhair fern, the colour of which contrasts prettily with that of the leather.
The place-cards may be cut from a bit of fine chamois leather and pasted on cards—the names in raised gilt. This lettering, which is so effective, is easily achieved by home talent. A fine white powder is mixed with mucilage-water and is taken up by a little syringe, with the tube of which one writes as with a pen, while pressing the bulb gently with the left hand to make the mixture flow. Upon these moist white letters a fine gold-dust is sprinkled, which adheres so closely that a moment later, when it is dry, one may blow or dust off the superfluous gold powder and the letters stand out in bright relief. The little outfit for this purpose may be bought in the shops for a trifle.
A prettier centrepiece, if less easily achieved, would