Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Check Out Antiques Roadshow

Wow - it is Tuesday and I am coming up for air.  The robot team has their League Championship on Saturday so last weekend was a blur of activity.  Presentation editing, notebook digitizing/printing, editing summaries, scripts, and more robot work than I can shake a stick at.  Some kids did seven hours straight just on notebook digitizing.  They were a bit fried.  The robot had 'barfed its guts of gears out' when I got back from Sotheby's and it was looking really bad.  Some of the changes to get another function it needed had made previously done functions not work anymore.  Five steps back to get one step forward.  So they were all working feverishly.  Still way too much work for this week after school everyday than we are comfortable with.  By Sunday night, I collapsed into a chair and really didn't care that my beloved Patriots had lost.  I was just too exhausted.  Yesterday I spent it mainly in PJs packing silk wrapped purls into boxes and making that sound 'duhhhhhh' that says you are fried.

One thing that brightened the day was watching PBS non-stop while cutting the purls.  And I came up on an advertisement for this week's Antiques Roadshow (and others emailed me last night as well!) where there was an amazing embroidered cabinet on stand to be shown.  A piece of stumpwork was also in the mix - but I didn't see it on the video.  

You can watch it online.  The cabinet on stand is in the last five minutes of the show but there is a snip on the site too that I have linked.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Esther and Ahasuerus

This is lot 441, a stumpwork piece depicting Esther pleading with King Ahasuerus.  The close-ups below give you a view on how the textural parts of the piece were done.  This one is interesting as there is an attempt to show architecture in the main scene with the tent being placed under a portico of a building.

Lot 441, 20 January 2016-22 January 201,  Sotheby's

Lot 441 20 January 2016 - 22 January 2016, Sotheby's

Lot 441 20 January 2016 - 22 January 2016, Sotheby's

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Queen from Last Casket

I was asked in a question if the inner door could be shown for that last casket that was on sale at Christie's.  So here it is!

Lot 698 sale 10699, Christie's

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Back From NYC

Lot 215 - Embroidered Casket, Photo Courtesy of Sotheby's

Well it was a fast few days in NYC for the Sotheby's conference and continuing exhibition of Anita and Ervin's wonderful things.  They took up two full floors of Sotheby's New York building.  I think they did a lovely job of exhibiting the objects in room settings, often with backdrop pictures of the house.

Lot 215 - Embroidered Casket
Many old friends were there - Casketeers, collectors, needlework dealers, other historians and curators!  So it was quite fun to be running around and looking at objects together as well as reminiscing about the wonderful couple who put together such a fine collection.  The auction starts this morning and quite a few people have their wish list and paddles ready.

I want to show more of their collection - in case you haven't bought the catalog or viewed it online.  There is still time for a telephone bid here and there.
Lot 215 - Embroidered Casket

Lot 215 - Embroidered Casket
This casket is a conundrum and many of us were talking about it over and over.  The form isn't and yet is 17th century English.  The embroidery on the sides looks like caskets and yet the split stitch and directional shifts harkens to a slightly later feel.  The interior definitely look at once familiar and yet not.  It looks a bit continental with the green velvet and addition of bobbin lace edgings - reminding me of several Dutch sewing pillows, but who knows when that was added.  The blue interior contrasts with hints of pink interior that you see here and there when opening drawers.  It is a decent match to another that has been moving around the auction houses over the last decade.   For both, the sheer size and proportions of each is such that it can't be made up of panels that were for a 17th century casket left unfinished.  They just aren't the right size and are too large.  So they were purpose embroidered.
Lot 215 - Embroidered Casket

While lovely - still a conundrum! Maybe a new teacher/fabricator.  Maybe a later version.  The existence of two might bring more to light and we will have our answer!

lot 698 sale 10699 The English Collector, Christie's

lot 698 sale 10699 The English Collector, Christie's

lot 698 sale 10699 The English Collector, Christie's
lot 698 sale 10699 The English Collector, Christie's

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

What's In the Frostings Box?

Glossy box - the same size as a US Priority small mailer
The shipment of the first box in the Frostings Club went out before Christmas and I was excited to get it out there.  Because it was so close to Christmas - everyone instinctively realized that they should keep the contents of the box secret - me included - so as many people as possible could fully enjoy the experience of getting the surprise and opening it to find out what was inside.

This first shipment was exciting as I had a custom storage box made for the club and I bet most people thought the contents would just show up in a plastic bag.  Nope!  We all deserve something a bit special to keep our threads in.  The glossy box is covered in motifs from the 17th century and is magnetically closed so it will be useful long after the threads are gone.

Inside of Frostings Kit 1
Once opened, the box is full of 34 threads!  These have been curated to be useful for 17th century embroidery styles.  That isn't to say they aren't fun and can't be used elsewhere - but the idea was to increase the choices for all our embroidered cabinets, mirrors and the like.  Things I have seen under the microscope and had manufactured special or that aren't easily found in your embroidery stores.

I am not going to review all the threads in this blog as those who will sign up for the club (there are spots and boxes left) need a bit of surprise when they open it!  But let me show a few of them right now and explain what can be done with them.

Blue and Cream lacet braid
The first thing encountered is a packet of 13 different lacet braids in one yard quantities.  The top one is a multicolored braid made of cream and blue.  These little braids are really functional and once you start looking for them - you find them everywhere!  Not only can they be used as small drawstrings in tiny purses, but they are often seen as small ribbons attached to stumpwork figures.  Looped they embellish shoes, boots, collars, and the bottoms of breeches.  Look closely on the horses and camels and you will see all the bridles being made from these braids.

Pansy Posey Instructions are Free on my site.  The braids
are included in the Frostings Kit
Then, if they are placed edge to edge, you can whip stitch between two pieces and fold them back upon themselves while stitching.  This can make long loops to invent fabrics for use on figures, dogs ears, or even full posies of flowers.  Many little gathering of flowers made from these braids show up in casket drawers in collections.  I have already introduced a strawberry flower kit based on these braids and now the FREE instructions for a pansy made from the braids in the Frostings kit.  The 13 colors include many that haven't been seen yet in anything I have published.  I don't want to do too big of a spoiler... but next week there just might be a contest announced using these braids for Frostings Club members.

The next items you find are a set of three silk
Grey and white gimps to extend the Silk Gimp range of threads
gimps shading from dark grey to white.  These are needed colors to allow animals, including unicorns, and buildings to be better worked with couched gimps or gimps worked in needlelace stitches.  The white will also allow really lovely or nue skirts to be worked for stumpwork ladies by substituting the gold or silver thread with the white gimp instead.

Serpentine Silk Trim
A really special thread found in the box is a very, very limited edition trim (1 meter) that is all silk.  This trim is in a light gold/pink coloration and blends really lovely with samplers and our 17th century embroidery alike.  The trim is from passamentry and is not even 1/4" in height.  In stumpwork, trims like this were often used on clothes of the figures as well as on the edge of canopies and curtains.  I
also want to use this trim on the edge of sampler ornaments too.  I just wish I could get more of this!  There is a very thin silk covered wire inside that helps the trim hold its shape.  Easily couched down, the more you play with the trim, the more ideas for its use pop into your head.

Thick Striped Gimps
The last set of items I will show is a family of SEVEN thick silk gimps that are striped.  This type of gimp was found all over the grottos in 17th century pictures, mirrors and caskets.  They were couched down to fill the rock shapes and the stripe would give the impression of granite.  I love these gimps as trims to outline as well.  The colors range through a series of neutrals and other rock like colors that cross over into being appropriate for stems and flowers or even animals.  Once you start using them couched down around a figure - you will find them indispensable as they are weighty yet interesting at the same time.  Next week, a set of instructions for a really lovely project will be released to use one of these striped gimps as well as the threads in the box I am not talking about this week.  (a teaser...)

The last teaser is the other set of Free instructions you will find on my site for some of the contents of this Frostings Box.  A blackwork rose based on a drawing in Thomas Trevelyan's manuscript of embroidery patterns is now up for your enjoyment.  If you have the Frostings box - all you will need
is a piece of linen, a spool of Soie Paris in black (noir) and a needle!
Instructions for this design are available on my website

If you aren't a member of the Frostings Club - you can still join for this box and the next in the series.   There are about 100 left before they are gone!


Monday, January 11, 2016

Sotheby's Seminar

The seminar about Irvin and Anita Schorsch's collection on Monday, January 18th is open to the public.  The schedule is below:

Registration, 7th Floor 
1334 York Ave.
New York, NY 10021

Erik K. Gronning, Head of Americana Department at Sotheby’s

My Life and Times with Irvin and Anita Schorsch
Charles F. Hummel, Curator Emeritus at Winterthur, Wilmington, Delaware

The Schorschs and Hidden Glen
John Milner, John Milner Architects, Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania


Silver and Jewelry in the Schorsch Collection
John Ward, Head of the Silver Department at Sotheby’s.

Early Baroque Seating Furniture of Massachusetts
Robert F. Trent, Independent Scholar and Upholster, Wilmington, Delaware

The Art of Mourning: The Material Culture of Mourning in the Schorsch Collection
Katie McKinney, Floater, Americana Department, Sotheby’s, New York


Masterpieces of the Schorsch Collection: Tour of the Exhibition Galleries
Erik K. Gronning, Head of Americana Department at Sotheby’s
John Ward, Head of Silver Department at Sotheby’s
Christina Prescott Walker, Director of European Ceramics Department at Sotheby’s

Ceramics in the Schorsch Collection
Rob Hunter, Editor of Ceramics in America, Williamsburg, Virginia.

Colonial Portraiture in the Schorsch Collection
Laura Barry, Juli Grainger Curator, Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, Williamsburg, Virginia


Metals in the Schorsch Collection
Don Fennimore, Curator Emeritus Winterthur Museum , Wilmington, Delaware

Textiles and Needlework in the Schorsch Collection
Dr. Tricia Nguyen, Thistle Threads

Grace in Design: Masterworks of American Furniture in the Schorsch Collection
Erik K. Gronning, Head of Americana Department at Sotheby’s

Closing Remarks

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Anita's Caskets - Part 2

This tortoise shell edged casket didn't appear at first like it would hold a major discovery as I was looking at the sides and the interior.  The interior may have had some embroidery added to it later as it is out of character.  But as I progressed opening drawers and taking things out, I noted first that the pounce pots and ink wells had numbers on the bottom.  That was quite exciting as it added to my growing database of sizing numbers.  I believe that as the casket finishers were putting them together they had to make the sizes to fit pre-made items such as the bottles and pounce pots.  So they make them for a 3, 4, 5 or 6 - all numbers I have found on the bottom of these items.  They are evidence of a coordinated manufacturing infrastructure that would have been localized in one area to feed this casket obsession and turns on the head the idea that they were being made in towns all over the country.
Bottom of the ink wells with the size number on them

As we looked inside the lid, I noted that the cavity was actually a tray and would be able to be pulled out - and it did!  What I wasn't expecting was that it was lined with a print and not with plain silk!  When I find prints, I get very excited as their are often clues on them to the print maker/seller or artist.  So far while I know that almost all of them were sold by Robert Walton or John Overton, printmakers of the day, I haven't yet been able to identify the actual print yet!  These were low cost prints that were often stencil colored by women working for them.  Very inexpensive.  This one really confused me as it just screamed 'Netherlands' with its subject matter.

Interior, that is a tray as evidenced by the beveled edge.
Must be complete and take it out.
Later on the train (which had high speed internet to go with its high speed -- WOW), I was reviewing the photos as I downloaded them to the computer drive and could magnify them.  The print was interesting and I started to look closely at it.  Very confusing as it both seemed the ships were on ice and in the water at the same time.  And then it hit me - the harbor WAS iced over and there was a man in the middle on skates.  A sled was pulled up to the edge of the ice with a load for the ship and in another place, two men were dipping funny sticks in the water.   I spent time looking at the history and prints of the little ice age in England - a time they had many frost fairs on the surface of the Thames river in London (1683-1684).  But this wasn't to be found in that thread.

The print hiding under the tray!  See the sled near the ship on the upper left.
Man with skates on.  At this time they often carried a stick with hook to help them get out of the water if they fell
through thin ice.  The men in the foreground are two 'colfers' trying to get their ball from the water/ice edge.
I had just been to the monumental Dutch Masters exhibition at the MFA for a second time and had spent much time with Dutch winter landscapes and recognized this as that same genre - different from what was going on in England at the same time.  Views of daily life.  Then I focused on the scene on the right hand side and as my eyes acclimated to the scene and took in the details I almost screamed!  
They were curling!!!  I thought that was a Canadian sport (or Norweigian's with funny pants - sorry for the obscure reference, my electrician from This Old House is trying for the US olympic team so I have learned a lot about it during our renovation).  Well - come to find out (thank you wifi at 180 mph), it was invented in Scotland and the Netherlands which were avid trading partners in the 16th and 17th century.  Those are stones or wood disks with sticks out of it.  Note the broom leaning against one and a person using one to melt the ice ahead of a moving one.
Original uncolored print from the British Museum.  The men with the sled on the right have been cut off by mirrors in
the casket.

I was freaked out - could I find this print in histories of curling?  Was it the earliest known depiction? In fact - it is one of the four earliest known of curling!  It took some digging but I found it on the train.  It was a Dutch print called Winter and was dated 1613-1618 published by Hendrick Laurentsz. So we have the first identified print in a casket that I know of.  Now the questions multiply!  Why the early date, was the plate purchased by one of the English print makers and moved to England to use (that happened in England a lot) much later?  Much to be thought about now.

Colfer c. 1700.  Pen and ink drawing after an engraving
by Romeyn de Hooghe, 1645-1708.
And what about those guys dipping the sticks into the water?  Well in the other early prints about curling, there are always men playing games on the ice - seems almost like hockey.  But it is the winter form of what would end up becoming Golf!!  They are trying to get their errant 'colf' ball out of the freezing water.  WOW.

I can almost feel Anita and Ervin smiling down at me today as I write this about their little secret about our sports history inside the casket that, at first, just seemed so regular.


Saturday, January 9, 2016

Anita's Caskets - Part 1

This casket was a special gift from Irvin to Anita and the one she shared with me on my visit to her home.  It had a special place in her heart as she had admired it for awhile before Irvin had persuaded the owner to sell it to him as a birthday gift to Anita.  Having recently received a present like this - I can say that the surprise of something so unique and so to your core interest is amazing and makes one weep.

Casket from the Collection of Anita and Irvin Schorsch (Picture courtesy Sotheby's)
This piece is fascinating both outside and in.  While the silver embroidery is tarnished, the workmanship is wonderful and the design style must have piqued Anita's interest greatly.  She mused that it might have a Dutch influence and I have to heartily agree with her.  Immediately when seeing this and its arcaded panels with trees, houses and other foliage and animals 'grounded' in the top spaces, I am reminded of a particular professional embroidery house in Antwerp in the first half of the 17th century.  This house provided embroidered panels for cabinets that were sold into England and France as valuables cabinets and I feel were the inspiration for the school girl caskets that we are so familiar with today.  So could this be a transitional piece?  Or one made by the same house decades later for a client (whose arms are inside) when the style had transitioned to this shape.

Flemish Cabinet Lot 37, London 13 April 2011, Sotheby's

Flemish Cabinet Lot 37, London 13 April 2011, Sotheby's
It isn't just the shape of the arcades that are shared, but when I look at works that are similar and try to decide if they might be professionally worked (there is concrete evidence of the Flemish pieces being from one workshop in records in Flemish), I look to see if motifs and treatment of those motifs is consistent as well as the materials used.  A narrow material vocabulary is typical on professional pieces, part of keeping their inventory of threads and thus capital expended narrow.

The satin stitched flowers and curling stems with the way the motifs were treated show similarity to the inside of Anita's cabinet.  When viewing gloves worked by the same workshop as the Flemish cabinets, the similarity becomes stronger.  Unfortunately, I don't have permissions for those pictures in a blog.  It is the silver metal worked animals, fish and monsters that really resemble the treatment on the top of the casket.  On the top is a picture of Adam and Eve surrounded by silver worked padded animals.  The aquatic ones could be cut and pasted onto the Flemish pieces and you wouldn't even notice the difference!  Look close at the pictures I put up, you will see that the animals have what looks like damaged silk behind them.  It isn't - but it is the remnants of the silk that was embroidered to be the mate of that animal!  So it is two animals for each type.  I can't imagine that this wasn't noticed by Anita's eye for detail and charmed her.
Flemish Cabinet Lot 11, London 03 July 2007, Sotheby's
Left Side of Anita's Casket.  Notice the bunched up thread used as grass over the arcade.  This is the same material and technique seen in the Flemish cabinets in the same place.  
The inside of her casket showing technique and design that is related to the larger dutch pieces.  The way in which the flowers were shaded matches as well.  I am sure she figured out the arms on this piece but as of yet can't find that information.  I hope it is not lost to time.

Interior of the left door.  The curling foliate was typical of the larger Flemish pieces on the door interiors.

Interior of the right door.  The curling foliate was typical of the larger Flemish pieces on the door interiors.

One of my favorite finds.  As we pulled the pieces out of the casket, we found that ALL of the sides of the drawers and
lids were stamped with bookbinding stamps in patterns!! This is the first time I had seen that.  Before only on easily seen
surfaces.  It delighted me.  What was to delight me even more was to find it on a SECOND casket in her collection.  There it was - twice in one collection and never in the hundreds of caskets I have taken apart.  I wanted to turn to Anita and share
a knowing smile.... she knew they were unique and it was part of her purchasing decision!

Adam and Eve on the top of the casket.

The animals - note the extra mate behind each.

These fish could be from any Flemish piece!

Friday, January 8, 2016

Hidden Glen Farms - The Home of Anita and Irvin Schorsch

Casket in the Dutch Room, an extension to the historic home meant mainly for
there Dutch themed collections.  I listened to them both discuss marriage gloves
in portraits from this room for a long time, starting a research
thread I have gone down. (Photo courtesy of Sotheby's)
In mid-December I hinted in NING that there was something exciting going on in NYC in mid January and finally, I can talk about it.  It is both with excitement and yet with a very heavy heart that I let my readers know of a monumental auction at Sotheby's that will take three days - 20-22nd of January.  This is scheduled to be their launch of Americana Week in NYC, a week of intense antique shows and auctions that brings the foremost collectors to the city.  In the past, the collection of Betty Ring and other notable collections containing significant embroidery has been auctioned during this week.

The entire contents of Hidden Glen Farms, the residence of Anita and Irvin Schorsch will be auctioned those days and exhibited starting January 13th.  Uniquely, the objects will be exhibited in faux rooms as they were held in their home and the catalog uniquely represents that - the objects are shown in-situ as they had been carefully placed.  Anita and Irvin were married over 60 years and passed away within a year of each other after a lifetime of collecting and scholarship.  It is with a very heavy heart that I talk about this collection as I feel so fortunate to have known them both.

Two wonderful embroideries on the walls, as well as some personal work on the stand.  (Photo courtesy of Sotheby's)
I have had the distinct pleasure and honor to meet and be introduced to some of the foremost collectors in America and even more honored at how so many have invited me to their home and shared their collections with me.  I try to never reveal their names and collections, although some have even been so gracious to allow me to use pictures in my courses anonymously.  My introduction to Anita and Irvin is a funny story and came about near the end of the Plimoth Jacket project.  I was at Winterthur and staying with friends, debating one evening in front of the fire about conclusions from the project with the husband who is an independent scholar as well as collector.  At one point, he asked me "Well, what does Anita think?".  My blank look was all he needed and he immediately called to his wife to get Anita on the phone.  Within minutes they had told her she needed to meet me and see the coif and forehead cloth (matching pieces to the Plimoth Jacket) that I had with me.  So it was set - we would visit the next morning.

Now really, if you home is really a museum and you get a call saying "can I bring over some strangers tomorrow morning?" - what do you expect?  Well, the gracious character of Irvin and Anita was to invite us in, show us the entire house, ohhh and ahhh over the coif with extreme interest and not only that - but treat us to a period lunch of turtle soup on objects I would never dream of touching much less sitting on and using.  To me this was heaven.

You had to experience this couple to understand.  Anita was so fascinated by the collections they were amassing that she went back to school and got her PhD.  She wrote six books on objects, the most notable is the volume on mourning embroideries, a particular love of hers.  Despite her age, it was hard to keep up with her and her flashlight running around the darkened house looking at details in embroideries and asking my opinion and more likely giving me her ideas and opinions from years of study.  I really understood better who they were during lunch, when they pointed out the spinning wheel in the corner and how Anita had taught their three boys to spin wool from their sheep.  They were just as interested in the how and why as in the value of the object.  Their fascination with American History was deep - incredibly deep - and went way beyond living in a beautiful embellished home.  Their collections had nothing to do with the thing that sometimes drives amazing collections - there wasn't pride, ego and competition involved, but instead deep acedemic interest.  I immediately admired that greatly.

A view of the Keeping Room with the Russian Leather upholstered chairs and the beaded casket in the background.  Through the hall, you can see the Hadley Chest that I had loved from books and was now sitting there in front of me. (Picture courtesy of Sotheby's)
As we sat on the 17th century chairs, newly upholstered with leather brought up and stabilized from a sunken Russian ship from the 1600s, Ervin leaned over to me with a twinkle in his eye and asked me what my favorite object was.  He was shocked when I immediately said the Hadley Chest that we could just see in the hall -- looking past the beaded casket to my right.  He started to laugh a belly laugh realizing that I was also just as hooked on history - all history - as they were.

Our visit lasted a few hours and there was just so much to behold and I so wanted to open every casket and spend hours with each piece of embroidery - but one doesn't ask!  You allow the owners to show you what they want to and listen with open ears as they have soooo much to teach you.  I learned a great deal that day and much of what Anita said and showed me in her Dutch room sent me down new paths of research that I am grateful for.  It was a day of visual splendor and a memory that I will always cherish.

But little did I know that our paths would cross more.  Within the year, I got an email from one of her sons.  He knew his mother was fascinated by my reproduction threads for the Plimoth Jacket and he though that she would love some for her birthday - to be given to her at a family retreat they all would gather at.  I packaged up a special grouping with lace spangles and some articles I also knew she would enjoy.  I heard back that Anita was delighted and grabbed a microphone at the dinner and regaled the family of 24 the entire story about how we had brought this jacket to life.  Again, we  were able to share moments during the Plimoth Jacket opening at Winterthur and then a big surprise when Anita, an embroiderer herself (she worked chair seats with the wool her sons had spun), wanted to learn to make stumpwork to understand her collection better.

A extremely fun weekend was had at another collector friend of mine in the area who hosted the weekend.  Anita, my friend and Linda Eaton (Winterthur) worked the Stumpwork Lion piece.  It was a fantastic time - not only working in period surroundings - but the discussions were all academic over the needle.  And then in the evening, Irvin and the host joined us in candlelight where we discussed Irvin's fascination with George Washington and how one might use modern scientific methods to authenticate a sealed lock of hair before he would purchase it for his memorial museum (They had founded one).

An amazing collection of American samplers in a nook.  (Photo courtesy of Sotheby's)
So to hear that they had passed away last year and had willed their collection for sale at Sotheby's was something that made me so sad.  Their children had all gone on to be avid collectors of American decorative arts as well and have full homes and Anita and Irvin decided to sell their collection after their death at no reserve - that it was time for the objects to go back to others who would love them too.  That speaks volumes as well.

Sotheby's has asked me to be one of several scholars who will speak on the collection on January 18th at a symposium in their honor.  A very fitting way to begin the auction of their collection - in the way they approached it themselves - as a journey of new discoveries.  I asked to come down in December and investigate the objects in the way I had always wanted to do.  You see, often you can understand a collector by the object.  Some collect rare and perfect.  Some collect a subject matter or want to have one of each.  At times even, a collector is concentrating on American furniture and the embroidery is just there for the mood.  There was something about the pieces and Anita's personality that really, really made me want to see them up close and inside.  Like there was more than met the eye - just like how the word 'collectors' did not adequately describe Anita and Irvin - there was a reason for each piece to be selected for her collection that wouldn't be immediately apparent.  Something secret or unique that she would have understood was different or important and most wouldn't have.  Her level of scholarship was such that we never had enough time to explore her objects together because there were just so many of them and looking at one object took forever because she wanted to explore it to all it would share.  The one casket we took off the shelf and looked at together was far more interesting inside than outward appearance and I had a strong feeling that would be the case for more of her pieces.

As I opened casket after casket that day - I 'found' Anita inside them.  It was like talking to her.  When I ran to the train, I had to share the day with the friend who had introduced us.  It took her days to write back as it made her cry.  It made me cry too for the lost opportunity to enjoy the experience with Anita herself.  She would have just LOVED the Cabinet of Curiosities course and would have been jotting down notes and sending them to me with her thoughts born of decades of study of the period.  She would have delighted in every discussion of bottle sizes, marks on the bottoms of the sander, and what kind of paper was used.  Her legacy goes on now as her pieces have shared after she is gone.

Sotheby's has graciously allowed me to share some of the pictures I took that day in the blog - as Anita would have done so if she was there.  As I am now working on my presentation, I will also take some time to show you what she must have loved about some of her pieces.

If you have the time or opportunity to be in NYC during the exhibition days - give yourself the extreme pleasure of seeing their collection together for the last time and look at the six caskets and more than a dozen other 17th century embroideries.  Samplers, mourning embroideries, mirrors and a christening basket, sweet bag, embroidered book... it goes on.  All with the paintings, furniture, and other objects that a couple who shared a deep love of history and scholarship and each other chose to live with together.  If you are too far away, brew a cup of tea and enjoy the catalog online - please read the essay on Anita and Irvin first and then look at the picture on page 6.  You simply must know the people behind the objects so you can understand.


Thursday, January 7, 2016

12 Days of After Christmas Giveaway - Day 12

The last giveaway for this Christmas season!  It is a ball ornament designed by Wendy White for the Just Cross Stitch issue.  Send a email to me - tricia@alum.mit.edu - with "Wendy's Ornament" in the subject line and your address in the body of the message.  Then send it by midnight on January 8th!

Hope you have enjoyed all the giveaways!  I have my pile for next year already started.


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

12 Days after Christmas Giveaway - Day 11

Here is a giveaway with a rectangle Tokens and Trifles or Trinket to go with it for the design of your choice.  If you are interested, send me an email at tricia@alum.mit.edu with SWEET HOME in the subject line and your address in the body of the message.  Send it by midnight Jan 7th.