I finished the sampler before I left Germany to come to the USA but I decided to wait to write about it until I had some time to think through how I feel about the finished piece.
Samplers were originally not decorative but instructional. Samplers were a way to keep a record of what a stitch looked like and how it could be used in either decorative needlework or for repairing fabric. Some of the most interesting samplers I’ve seen are darning patterns – the variation in different kinds of darning stitches is amazing! So I asked myself, does my Spring in Italy Sampler fulfill the instructional purpose?
Well…Yes! Absolutely! When I look at the different designs stitched with different threads not only can I see the difference, I can remember the difference. I didn’t anticipate that I would remember the stitching experience and it’s a nice surprise.
Here are the four rows of the sampler. Can you tell which row is stitched with which threads? To make it a little easier, I’ve given you the four groups of threads for each row. If you downloaded the thread chart, don’t look! See if you can figure it out without looking! (I’ve listed the threads beginning with wool in each list so the fiber doesn’t give it away.)
Group A: Caron Impressions, Aurifil Allegro Coton a broder, Au ver a soie d’alger
Group B: Patarnayan Wool, Anchor Pearl Cotton, Au ver a soie perlee
Group C: Appleton wool, DMS Floche a broder, Pearsall’s Silk
Group D: Renaissance wool, Anchor stranded cotton, The Silk Mill silk
So, how did you do? For me the give away was the thickness of the thread in the last row – the two pearl (or perlee) threads are easy to identify. The answers are a bit farther down on the page…
I had planned to stitch a border around the whole piece but after looking at it, I decided that it would detract from the individual designs and (very importantly!) the designs weren’t laid out in a perfect grid. I need to put a grid on my light table so I’m sure I’m tracing designs accurately. When I stitch up an individual design for a small piece, I will be drawing up a border to go around it and I’ll be sure to share it with you.
And now (drum roll please………) the answers to the quiz:
Row 1 – Group C : Row 2 – Group D : Row 3 – Group A : Row 4 – Group B
I hope you’ve enjoyed this project and I would love to know if you’ve stitched some of all of it yourself!