** NEW RELEASE ** Harriot Hay 1809 – PDF Download
Harriot stitched her sampler in wool on linen close to 32ct.
The colours have been taken from the
back of the sampler.
It is stitched mainly in cross stitch over 2,
with a small amount of cross stitch over 1
for the verse and letters and some detail in
Algerian Eyelet stitch.
She is rated as suitable for an ambitious
beginner. Harriot stitched a beautiful, quirky sampler on linen and, as befits the daughter of a wool merchant, with
wool. She used a palette of twenty colours which have stood the test of time. Slightly faded on the front,
the colours for the reproduction have been taken from those at the back.
The Central House, with its perfect symmetry and straight lines, is so typically Georgian in style and
dominates the piece. At first glance, it appears that Harriot ran out of one red, so, selected another.
But, I am not so sure. I think she has shaded the house as if one side is in the sunlight and the other in the
shade. I often wonder how girls at that time started stitching. Did they deliberate, like we sometimes do,
as to whether to begin at the top or in the middle? Maybe not, as they were not necessarily following
charts in the same way that we do, but making up the design as they went along, taking from whatever
inspired them. So, I think Harriot started her sampler in the middle with her elegant Georgian mansion
and has given us a design that reflects that style. Close to the building, we have a walled garden, possibly
a kitchen garden, and here she has placed the birds that you would expect to find here: a wonderful
cockerel and hens,ducks and geese.
Right in the very middle, we have our Georgian gentleman, presenting a bouquet to his lady. Are these
her parents,or the dream of a young girl being wooed by her betrothed?
In front of that, she has put the country grounds, with exotic birds and trees. Two beautiful lollipop trees
flank the house. There is a grand peacock, small animals, birds and a large number of flowering plants. At
the very bottom is five little crosses. Could these represent Harriot and her three sisters and brother, or
could they be for brothers and sisters that didn’t grow up? I love looking at these pictorial samplers and
imagining the story behind them.
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