A Couple in an Exotic Landscape circa 1730
Stitched over two threads on 40 count linen, the finished piece will measure approximately 12″ x 14″. Cross stitch is the only stitch required, so the piece is recommended for any level of skill.The original needlework picture is in the collection of Witney Antiques, and has been reproduced with their permission. My thanks to Claudia Koerner for stitching the model.
This is an usual early 18th century needlework picture (circa 1730). The formula is similar to other examples: a couple flanking a tree, but it is usually more like a biblical “Tree of Life” with deciduous leaves and fruit, and the couples look more traditionally western. The exotic woman appears to be holding either a zither or a book: the gentleman appears to be playing a pipe as he leans on a sheep crook. All of the traditional elements are there- shepherd, shepherdess, sheep, dog, yet something is odd. The “Tree of Life” looks more like a palm tree, or possibly a tobacco plant. Many needlework pictures made during this period, 1680-1740, were inspired by the new discoveries of mariners and men of science as excursions to the west teased and opened the minds of English embroiderers more than three centuries ago.
Photos from the original picture
Silk Floss, Cotton Floss, Graph Only