Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday 31 July 2022

Four small Norwegian school samplers

The four samplers

As a collector at times, you come across similar, though not entirely identical items, this is the case with four small school samplers I recently acquired. Two of them were stitched eleven years apart by girls sharing a similar last name (Stavern), the other two are practically identical, but were worked four years apart at two different schools.

This makes me wonder if this was the standard form for school samplers of the time, or if the teacher was the same for both young girls, and as for the two near identical samplers, if there also it was the case of the same teacher relocating to a different school? These theories make for some fun speculations.

The samplers are very simple, just an alphabet in different stitches, and a set of numerals. The letter J is missing in three of the samplers, but Helen’s 1905 sampler has both the J, an extra half alphabet in Algerian eye and no numerals, all samplers have the letters Æ, Ø.

The cross stitch and Algerian eyes are stitched in red, the straight Gobelin stitches are white, blue or yellow.  Three of the samplers have a simple blanket stitch around the edge, the last one is stitched within the woven frame of the cloth.

If you want to try your hand at a stitching a historical sampler reproduction, these would make the perfect project. Simple, but with three different stitch types, plus the blanket stitch edge.

Another possibility is to select your favorite version of the alphabet and numerals and create your own sampler, using the colors of your choice. Because of the specialty stitches the samplers must be stitched on an evenweave fabric; look closely at the details photos for ideas of which material to use. 

The samplers are available as a set of 4x here: ETSY, Website

Close up of the details - Note the neat blanket stitch

Close up of the details

The 'Stavern' samplers

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