Since the holidays are coming up, I thought this extract from Miss Leslie's Behavior Book would be helpful:
In presenting a dress to a friend whose circumstances are not so affluent as your own, and who you know will gladly receive it, select one of excellent quality, and of a colour that you think she will like. She will feel mortified if you give her one that is low-priced, flimsy, and of an unbecoming tint. Get an ample quantity, so as to allow a piece to be cut off and laid by for a new body and sleeves, when necessary. And to make the gift complete, buy linen for the body-lining; stiff, glazed muslin for the facings, buttons, sewing-silk, and whatever else may be wanted. This will save her the cost of these things.
If there are givers reading this blog solely to get ideas of what to give givees who are very interested in sewing, a length (four yards is safe) of a very nice fabric is always welcome. Choose a color you've seen your givee wear, and ask for in the store for advice about fabric if you're unsure — natural fibers are best. Or you could visit some of the advertisers there on the right and choose a fantastic vintage pattern or vintage accessory — always welcome!
Oh, more about the charity drive for this year: first, we're up to $860! Second, I was wrong about international donors — it only works for Non-USians if you use Paypal. If you can't use Paypal and want to donate to an equivalent prisoners' or literacy charity in your home country, you're still eligible, just forward me your receipt! Remember, one lucky donor will have a character in my forthcoming novel named after them (or after a person important to them) — go out and donate here. Thanks!