A survey of the Guild of Merchants in the docks area of Ankh-Morpork found 987 women who gave their profession as "seamstress" – and only two needles.

Thus it is that there are many Seamstresses in Ankh-Morpork, and yet bachelors or old widowers have difficulty when they try to find needlewomen who wield needles and threads to repair garments.

This is because the seamstresses in the Seamstresses' Guild are, in the politically-correct language of the modern Ankh-Morpork, ladies (and gentlemen - they are an equal opportunities employer) of negotiable affection, whose company and loving attention, crudely put, could be hired for a night (or an hour if you're short of time).