30 October 2011

Elizabeth II: coronation brooches

In an online auction, this lot consisted of this Briggs Transfer coloured cover and inside, the transfers to embroider the brooches - a Queen's head, flowers of Britain and some of the Commonwealth, and two buildings - Windsor Castle and ?perhaps the Tower of London?.  I would assume that it also had thread colours and perhaps stitching instructions, but some transfer pattern books of the time did not.

A smaller alternative in time and scale for the embroiderer who can then wear her patriotism on herself, rather than on her wall.

If you know any more about this or have pictures of examples to share, please leave a comment.

23 October 2011

Elizabeth II: Coronation sampler with red coach

While last week's coronation sampler featured a heavily embroidered gold coach, the examples I've seen of this one generally feature the coach done mainly in red.  As a whole, it's a bit more lavish/whimsical/embellished than last week's design.The photograph often looks as though it's from a newspaper - I wonder if the design was originally from a newspaper?  I've seen a couple of different photos used in this design, but this is the one I've most often seen.  This image is from a past eBay auction (the item sold). 

My guess is that this was a transfer design, and not sold as a kit, as I've seen variation in colours used on it which imply that while there was a colour picture for guidance, the final choice was the embroiderer's.

If you know where this design was published, or any more information, please do leave a comment.

16 October 2011

Elizabeth II: coronation embroidery with Coach, Abbey and Palace

I hesitate to call this a coronation sampler in that it's a collection of images without much text.  But then again you get vintage and antique samplers that are just that, and this is clearly intended as a commemorative embroidery.  This example has been for sale on eBay.  It's interesting to see the choice of buildings on royal samplers - this design has plumped for the obvious London ones, Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey.

Which makes me wonder if there are any royal samplers featuring Balmoral or Sandringham?  I've seen one tablecloth design with royal residences embroidered on the borders/corners, but not a sampler with either of those.  I have seen embroideries focusing on individual royal residences, such as Windsor Castle or Holyroodhouse, but they feature the buildings, with little or no text beyond the building's name.

The eBay seller is this one, should you wish to follow up and see if this item is still for sale.

08 October 2011

Elizabeth II: coronation sampler (with stitcher's name)

I've seen several examples of this design.  It's not the most subtle, and usually looks a tad gaudy/chunky, but its most distinctive feature is the encouragement to have the embroiderer put her/.his name on the work at the end of the inscription.  Adds a nice individual link, when so many such samplers are anonymous/without named provenance, to have the embroiderer's name stitched into the work. 

The rest of the imagery is standard British patriotic fare, crest and crown and beefeaters and floral emblems etc. This one looks frayed, and having handled one of these, the background fabric is not a small count fabric, but a comparatively loose weave.  I wonder if it was sold as a pre-printed piece, rather than a transfer?  One of the notable differences between embroidered samplers and cross stitch ones is that embroidery offers more freedom in stitch choice and placement, as well as colour variation.  The four examples of this sampler shown here illustrate this nicely.  Even though it's a pattern, it's not being treated as a straitjacket.

This was auctioned in 2008 with a lot of mostly 19th century samplers with a starting price of 150GBP - hard to determine the value of this alone.  It was described as being in good condition.

Read more: http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/5909533

Here are three other examples of this sampler:

01 October 2011

William & Kate: royal wedding crafts (article)

Illustrated with this cross stitch chart of Kate (courtesy of Cross Stitcher magazine), the Guardian had an article in April 2011 about the wide variety in royal wedding craft-related items.  I only just tripped over it, and figured it should be recorded here.  Royal wedding: Kate Middleton cross stitch pattern, by Perri Lewis.

Read the whole article here:

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