This beautiful sampler boasting vivid red and white color hues was used to create a charming ditty bag. What a great idea! It is signed by the maker “Genevie” and has French origin (taking the makers name into account) but is not dated. It was probably worked in the last quarter of the 19th century to 1910 and is silk on ground fabric called “Penelope” canvas. The sampler was most likely created first and then used as an addition to enhance the front of a draw string bag.
There are two letters missing from the alphabet which are “W” and “Y”. Regarding the omission of these letters one explanation was they were not used very much at the time therefore not taught. The other theory is that the universal Roman alphabet was evolving as well. There are some age related darker areas that appear on the second row of image 7 in the middle location between the “D” and the “E” as well as the “F” and the “G”. Referencing the last row, slight toning can also be found under the ”E” and to the right of the “V” as shown in image 8.
The letter “H” in the first row possesses a pale violet hue and the “J” in the second row depicts a soft eggshell white appearance. It would seem that it may be too early in working this textile to run out of the red thread so my thought is these colors chosen were intentional. The border on the left has been ”doubled down” whereas the other two borders (top and right) are single elements worked using an inverted “W” design. The bottom border consists of a series of double tiny cross stitches that appear above and below having a respite space.
All of the stitches in this lovely textile are accounted for and there are no holes to report. The sampler was hand stitched onto the tightly woven cotton fabric that comprises the ditty bag. The bag itself may have been machine stitched on the inside (left section) as the stitches are even and not irregular but the drawstring area was hand stitched. There is a piece of thread showing a light blue color that was woven into the fabric on the back side as shown in image 11. This bag is in excellent condition without any holes, stains or rips to report. No odors are present either.
This beautiful bag can hang from a shaker peg rack because of the textured red ribbon feature. It can be stuffed with fresh greens for the holidays along with a couple chenille candy canes or small toys can be used as well. This textile can also be laid on a quiet table with old leather books nearby and perhaps an early candle stick too. Great piece that is extremely unique and will add whimsical flavor to your homestead worked by a child who did her best!
Measures 10 ½” tall and measures 7 ½” across the middle section.
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