Samplers

Samplers

A stitch sample is a piece or pieces of material on which one or more structural or decorative stitches are worked, usually in a random manner, and then fastened together in some manner (perhaps pinned or stitched together). Such samples are generally intended to remind the embroiderer of how to work the stitches and are used for private information and purposes.

A stitch sampler is a form of sampler, in which two or more different decorative stitches are worked on the ground material in a pre-ordained order or pattern, in order to display the knowledge and skill of the embroiderer and/or his/her teacher.

The Textile Research Centre in Leiden, The Netherlands, houses a remarkable set of a printing block and two related embroidery pieces. The printing block and one of the pieces, a sari band, originate from India and they date to the early 21st century. The other sample, or test piece, illustrated here, was worked with the help of the printing block.

A text sampler is a form of sampler, in which the main design consists of a text rather than a series of decorative patterns or stitches. This type of sampler developed in northwestern Europe in the mid-seventeenth century and was especially popular among the Protestants. The texts often are orthodox moral or religious quotations. This form of sampler was spread around the world via British colonists, especially in North America.

The US Citizenship Test Sampler is a project begun in 2012 by the fibre artist, Aram Han Sifuentes (Chicago). It involves stitching a sampler with all of the one hundred questions and answers that are used for the US Citizenship and Naturalization test.

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