As I fear that the Whife era MTOC is gaining something of a reputation for being some sort of near mythical monster, I thought I would try to dispel some of these notions by showing everyone the table of content for the 1949 edition:
The 1949 MTOC is to some degree a collage of several other books. These include the Dellafera edition of The Art of Garment Making
, Whife's A First Course in Gentlemen's Garment Cutting
, and the Percival Thickett era edition of the book on fitting. There are a few ladies' drafts but very little indeed in comparison to Dellafera's A First Course in Ladies' Garment Cutting.
Then there are miscellaneous bits and pieces about military uniforms of the period, dress etiquette (how to wear medals etc), pattern grading, shirt cutting, and running a business (book keeping, window dressing etc).
I suspect that some of you are under the impression that you are getting three massive tomes dedicated to cutting and tailoring, but little could be further from the truth. Those of you interested in gentlemen's cutting will find little essential information beyond the first volume. Those interested in ladies' cutting will find parts of volume II useful. The rest consists of miscellaneous odds and ends, which are interesting but not essential. Some of it is too dated to be of any use other than to a costumer.
The individual books from which contents are taken to form the MTOC also come in more updated editions. Thickett inherited the garment fitting book from W.D.F Vincent, under whom he worked to produce earlier editions. Dellafera takes on the fitting book after Thickett. Inclusion of the Vincent-Thickett-Dellafera book on fitting in the MTOC means that Reuben Sytner's book on fitting, which is arguably more comprehensive, is omitted altogether (it had to be one or the other, and not both in the MTOC). After Dellafera's death, Whife also starts to add his ideas to The Art of Garment Making.
After a while, they stopped updating the MTOC. In 1960s edition of The Tailor & Cutter Journal
, they don't even advertise the MTOC, but they do continue to advertise these individual books. I suspect the MTOC was too expensive to print compared to the amount of buyer interest. The end result is that if you want Whife's most recent ideas on cutting and tailoring you have to turn to the individual books that get updated beyond MTOC. In that sense, the MTOC is left to become outdated causing it to become a bit of a white elephant - a magnificent one, but a white elephant nonetheless.