Twigg Miniatures circa 1800
Linen: 30 count
Finished Size: 5 1/2″ Square (Each sampler)
Genuine miniature samplers – not fragments of larger pieces or excerpts from full-size samplers – are relatively rare. The most common sort feature either monochromatic alphabetic and numeric tests, or else a simple short, sentimental verse. The former type, sometimes called “plain work,” usually originated in a working class environment where young girls learned the means of self support. Small samplers like this were sometimes bound into small volumes, and today are more often found individually rather than in their original book format. The related pair of miniature samplers reproduced here are very unusual in that they are neither alphabetic exercises nor presentation (gift) pieces. Worked in cross stitch over one thread of linen, Sarah Twigg’s totally symmetrical floral sampler has a finely worked vining border reminiscent of a painted border on a china plate. The other sampler, by “LT” (possibly a younger sister) is worked in cross stitch over two threads of linen. Both samplers were found together, in matching period (circa 1800) reeded frames, suggesting their filial connection. Both samplers are included in the kit, along with silk embroidery floss.