This 4 meter long band sampler (that 13 feet for those who are not metric) delighted me so much I decided to share it. I love the way the women pore over it and are so animated as they discuss this or that aspect of the sampler.
I was fortunate enough to see these long band samplers when I visited Holland a couple of years ago. I have also seen a Dutch/Australian band sampler created by a lady who migrated to Australia after the second world war. I was told she was a needlework teacher and used it as a teaching aid.
The sampler on display in this video is similar to the ones I have seen. They are often a similar length and have a mix of practical stitchery and embroidery. I think one of the reasons I am so attracted to band samplers is that before the age of print, they were used as samplers – a record of stitches and patterns that was rolled and kept in a needlework box as a reference. No need to haul out a big file of stuff – just unroll and look for what you want!
Needless to say, this tradition of creating a long thin band sampler, in part informed my own sampler that I call “For the love of Stitching”. My sampler is 15 cm (6 inches) wide. It consists of different strips of fabric that are stitched together to form one long strip of needlework. Currently measures 96 feet 5 inches (2,938.78 centimeters), or 32.138 yards which is almost 30 meters. It is still growing in slow haphazard way. You can get the back story to the For love of Stitching band sampler and get some eye candy of it here.
If you feel like making yourself a cuppa and indulging in a little textile history, I wrote this article that covers A Brief History of Samplers. Also, the Victoria and Albert museum site has a very good article on the History of Samplers.
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