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Band Sampler

1675-1725
Origin: America, New England (attributed)
OW: 7 5/8" OH: 40 5/8"
Linen threads on a linen ground of 34 weft threads x 28 warp threads (identification of fibers by microscope)
Gift of Juli Grainger
Acc. No. 2008-16
This is a long narrow sampler worked primarily in blue and white linen threads (blue, green, red, and yellow threads visible on reverse) on a linen ground in a band format with selvedges at top and bottom and 1/8" hems at sides. The sampler consists of twenty-seven needlework bands in geometric and stylized motifs. The sampler is undated and unsigned and there are no inscriptions, verses, or alphabets.

Stitches: Cross over three threads and satin
Label:Band samplers, such as this one, are so named because of their characteristic horizontal bands of geometric patterns, flowers, vines, alphabets, and verses. Early in the seventeenth century band samplers were firmly established as part of a schoolgirl's curriculum in England. Two distinct types of band samplers were worked. Those in polychrome silk threads on a linen ground seem to have been the first of what was sometimes a series of needlework projects to be completed by a girl. The second type was stitched in techniques collectively labeled whitework, a term used in seventeenth-century records, in which white threads, usually linen, were stitched on a white linen ground. This sampler is unusual in that polychrome linen, and not silk, threads were worked on the linen ground.
Provenance:The sampler was purchased by Mrs. David Grainger in 1918 from Family Editions Antiques, Route 100 West Dover, Vermont 05356.
Mark(s):No marks.
Inscription(s):No inscriptions.