Antique Samplers in private collections

Antique Samplers in private collections

I discovered a site devoted to Antique samplers which I had not encountered before. In order to see the material on the site you have to sign up and become a member. When I first discovered the site a few months back I was just too darned busy to investigate further but fortunately I bookmarked it. Recently during a bookmark tidy up I stumbled across it again. I nearly hit the the delete button immediately because I hate forced sign ups as usually you jump through hoops only to find it was totally unnecessary.

I did sign up and once you have passed that barrier it is a good site. It describes itself as
“This website is intended to foster the study of, and education about antique samplers in their historic as well as needlework context. The pieces displayed are held privately. Membership to view any pictures is required.”
There are some interesting antique samplers there but I can’t point you to any particular sampler because of their sign up process. See my annoyance? Rather than fostering an interest and promoting discussion about samplers and their interesting history, the sign up / members only policy actually stifles conversation between enthusiasts

With that off my chest don’t let the site design put you off as there is great content on the site. Samplers range from pre 1700 to 1850. The samplers are well described and clearly photographed. If you click on the samplers you can view larger images and they are large enough to admire the technique and identify stitches. The site also houses a bibliography and a glossary.

Once a member you can favourite samplers and if you want to download larger versions of the sampler’s images you need a Gold Level Membership. I don’t want to do either of these things. I just enjoy reading about and seeing the samplers which I could do happily!


  1. Like you, I usually don’t bother with a site that requires me to sign up unless it is one that I particularly want to be involved in.

    Makes me wonder how many great sites I have missed out on but I still don’t think I will sign up for any site just to take a look see.

    See how many sites are missing out on me, LOL.


  2. I logged into the antique sampler site without any problems, which is very unusual for me, I usually fail to read some minute direction and stuff it up. I haven’t had time to browse yet but it looks interesting.

  3. I signed up, no problems Sharon. I’m researching needlework “pictures” from around 1847 for a project I’m involved with and hoped I might find something as a reference. I’d be interested in any other links you might have, good old Google hasn’t turned up anything like the description of the piece we are hoping to reproduce. I’ve looked at metal thread pieces as well, but this one was done in worsted (wool) on a cotton background by convicts. There are no surviving pictures, even the “work” has been misplaced somewhere. How are your detective skills, LOL, mine are just about exhausted. Thanks for the sampler link anyway, it was very educational. Oh, and I’ve posted some progress on my TIF challenge on my blog.
    Christine in sunnier Sydney

  4. Same as Deb. I did sign up and after four times, they still ask me for my password, too bad for me, as I am passionate for antique embroidery and calligraphy.
    I’ll try again, but very disillusioned.
    Any way, thank you Sharon

  5. As annoying as ads may seem, they are a MUCH better (and less annoying) way to get people to pay for a site than making them sign up and constantly pushing for a paid membership.
    I avoid membership sites altogether – unless I have a deep desire to become a member of something of course! 🙂

  6. It looks like a great site, Sharon, but I’ve tried four times to sign up and the site will not take any password I put in. It keeps telling me I haven’t filled in all the fields. So I’m not messing with it for now, but have bookmarked it and will try again some other time. Can you recommend any other good sites for samplers, antique and otherwise?


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