Wednesday, October 7, 2009

More on the Future Meltdown front

"Elusive, and highly prized are reproductions of samplers.
One of the most highly sought is the 1760 Chase Sampler by little 11 year old Mary Starker."

Amen to that - I've been looking for one of these for over TWENTY YEARS. See, my mother bought this kit back in the 70s and worked the whole thing, framed it, hung it on the wall for all to admire. And then, in one of the many, many Army relocations our family underwent, it was lost. She was heartbroken. So, ever since I started seriously stitching in college, I've been on the lookout. Antique stores were haunted, estate sales were attended, and there's been a troll crawling eBay for me since I first discovered eBay.

Finally, this year, one showed up on eBay. After the new PayPal rules (so I couldn't just use my own credit card for the Buy It Now), so I had to explain to my husband why he needed to RIGHT NOW pay an unseemly sum for an ancient kit. Thankfully, he'd heard about it at some point during the past decade from both me *and* my mother, so he got it.

My mother doesn't know.

The original sampler:

Size: 16"x 24" design hand printed on pure linen, size 20"x 28, cotton floss, diagrams, directions and stitch instructions.
Artist: Mary Starker, 1760, as reproduced & licensed by Elsa Williams
Manufacturer: Williamsburg by Elsa Williams, Exclusive Manufacturer of Williamsburg Needlework
"This is the Elsa Williams licensed reproduction of The Chase Sampler. Copied from the sampler worked by Mary Starker, this reproduction kit duplicates the gay colors and charming design of the original in the Williamsburg collection. A rare example of American needlework design, because it combines an embroidered picture with alphabet lists and includes the embroiderer's place of birth "Newbury, New England" ( thought to be Newburyport Massachusetts). Mary's name, place of birth, date, and a pious ejaculation, "Goodness and Mercy Ever follow those who shape their Conduct by Gods Holy Laws" have been deleted from the reproduction so that the 20th century worker may personalize the work."
While I understand that the kit has Great Value as an untouched item, screw that. It will have much, much more value to us hanging on the wall, thus I'm stitching this in secret for my mother, and hope to have it finished and framed by her next birthday as a surprise. She's going to love it!!


  1. First, sorry it's been a long time since I have visited your blog. :(

    You have been BUSY!!! Love all the cross stitch you have been working on. I so need to finish the one project I have laying in the closet. And the sampler for your Mom will be awesome! Love those.

    I've purposely not made a gift list of handmade things this year. Too much I want to do for myself. And the last time I made things for people, I don't think they were truly appreciated.

    Have a great week! I will stop by more often! :)


  2. I made that pumpkin (in the pic on my blog) a few years ago. Apparently the girls seem to think that more need to be lying around the house for fall. So maybe after I get finished with the 2nd sweater, I might add to our collection of pumpkins. Hopefully it will still be Fall at that time! LOL!!!!


  3. You're right. She'll love it. You are too sweet.


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