Monday, May 18, 2015

A Stitch in Time

I thought I'd share some of my miniature sewing items that I have collected over the past couple of years. As a lot of embroiderers do,  I collect antique sewing tools, and thought I should have a miniature version too!

 To contain them, I bought a delightful sewing table from Masters Miniatures, and made the stumpwork box box.

Inside the stumpwork box is a pair of working silver scissors by Don Henry (I think I bought them from S P Miniatures), a tiny pin cushion that I made from a scrap of silk and some entymology pins, and the most miniscule thimble I have ever seen.  As you can imagine, these items are safely put away in the box, otherwise I would lose them! (you can see the size of my sewing thimble in the background for comparison)  

The lid of the table lifts up to reveal its contents, nicely tidied away beetween projects

A button box, needles, an embroidery hoop, sewing threads, and a silk bag filled with skiens of silk, ready to be wound on to the thread winders. 

 Someone has recently finished a silk embroidery, with the inscription 'je vous aime, faites-vous de même' (I love you, do you the same), a motto I found on a tiny box from the 18th century, similar boxes of which with various mottos were given to sweethearts, and often kept in sewing boxes.  I am searching for the right size frame to put this embroidery in.

For my wedding last year, I received as a present this beautiful Georgian sampler, which has been in my family since it was made in 1834 by my great x 4 grandmother when she was nine years old! 

It is unfortunately very faded, as was obviously exposed to too much light, but I am so glad to have something with such sentimental value.  I would like to recreate many of the embroidery motifs, such as the rabbits and tree below,   This sampler is such a connection to the past, and I am very priviledged to be able to admire it up close every day.

While browsing at a local flea-market here in Lyon, I found another sewn treasure - perhaps not as impressive as the sampler above, but in its own way, very charming.  For the princely sum of 2 euros (really, you can find amazing treasure here sometimes), this poor, simple sampler was begging for a home.  

Made in 1904, though without a name, the colours are still really vibrant, but the stitching itself is damaged and incomplete.  It has such a naive style, most likely quite a young child made this.

This little sampler inspired me, of course, to start sewing some miniature ones, which I hope to finish and frame up soon.

I hope you enjoyed this little tour inside my miniature sewing box!



  1. Everything you have collected is lovely. None of those things however are as quite as gorgeous as your embroidery. :-)
    I love your antique samplers. How nice that you inherited such a family heirloom as a wedding gift. I am sure you were thrilled.

  2. I love your sewing table....your stump work box is exquisite.....but your (family) sampler is amazing!!! Enjoy your treasures!!

  3. Es todo precioso, en especial la caja de costura.

  4. C'est beau ! Lovely and precious objects :) and I love how the sampler is faded.

  5. Ciao Jonquil! A me è piaciuto molto!!! :-) Affascinante storia e bei tesori!

  6. Your sewing box treasures are perfection! Also the sampler from your gggggrandmother is a treasure beyond price. I love to see your embroidery work.

  7. Even with my ham fisted sewing skills I can appreciate the beauty and workmanship of these miniatures and samplers!! The sampler and stumpwork box are my favourite things!

  8. What an exciting little item to have in your house full of all it's wonderful contents. I do like pieces like this. The stumpwork box is a little gem all on it's own.

  9. Hi Jonquil! I think that it is Fascinating that your passion is so wonderfully expressed in your miniatures. I know that the contents of the sewing box are incredibly precious and tiny but your sewing box with your Beautiful stumpwork is hands down-THE STAR!!!!
    It appears that you are carrying on a tradition of expertise in needlework and the sampler of your ancestor, is Proof Positive. You have inherited an INCREDIBLE TALENT and it Amazes me every single time! :))


  10. Everything is amazing, but the small box is super.

  11. Everything is delightful and precious.

  12. Oh my goodness, your little stitched box and all its Treasures is just amazing!!! I don't know how you do it!!! I want to learn how to do the stumpwork.... Someday I will find the time to learn! Meanwhile I look at your tiny pieces and I'm just in awe of your work!!! Just amazing and so beautiful!
    And what a Treasure to have a piece of stitching done by your ancestor!!! Beautiful!

  13. Hello Jonquil,
    You have such wonderful pieces. I love the table and the scissors are great! That wedding present is wonderful. What a wonderful family heirloom to pass down. Needlework can be so impressive and beautiful.
    Big hug,