Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Books: Mrs Christie's Samplers and Stitches

I got into a back room and a buried book shelf last weekend and pulled out some of my "treasures."

Years ago Chicago had some great used books stores and we spent our weekends browsing in them. I ended up with some great books. But this is one I went hunting for--and it took quite a while to find.
I first saw this book in a local library and I was just blown away. I completely fell in love with the samplers. This was probably in the early 90s and the book was reprinted around then--a huge disappointment, all the charm was gone. I hunted until I found a copy for myself. Mine is a newer edition than the library's copy and not quite as nice, but it's mine!
My edition is from the late 30s; the library book I had found was from the 20s (I'm sure it's been pulled from the shelves by now--I wonder what happened to it). Mrs Christie described stitches I'd never heard of, like the braid above. There are sweet little illustrations and great descriptions.
I'm not sure why, but I just loved her samplers, especially all of the raised and braided stitches.
This is before I learned about stumpwork or casalguidi and I was in awe. I have found several books from this era with designs I find very appealing. The front piece is a sampler that I saw "in person" at the V&A museum in London in the 1997. Here's a spread. Mary over at Needle 'n Thread recently pointed out that it's available online here.

4 comments:

Aurelia Eglantine said...

Thanks very much for the great book review :) I've downloaded my own copy from the link you provided and, after skimming through it briefly, I am amazed at the unusual stitch combinations and diagrams. Although vintage, a lot of the designs look very modern (like the flower project you posted, or the Knots and Chains sampler in the book) and are very appealing, at least to me. I've been wanting to get into embroidery for some time, and this work is an excellent resource!

Lelia said...

thx for sharing - I visited the book on-line via your link. What a treasure!!!

Donna said...

Thank you! This will be a most excellent book to have on my nook!

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Hello from Michigan, WOW I have enjoyed looking at your "Classic" or Vintage embroidery books. Love them. Do you have any suggestions on where I could get a copy of Mrs. Christie Sampler and Stitches book??? Love your blog and your stithing is fantastic. I found your blog through Stitchin Fingers. Hugs Judy