Amy Cann 1831 ~ Printed Booklet


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Amy’s delightful sampler depicts a wonderfully imaginative landscaped park with a velvet lawn, specimen fruit trees and shrubs together with a pinery flanking the terraces as they rise up to a classical temple. This young sampler maker has used her needle to create an ornamental pleasure ground so typical of the Georgian period. Wealthy landowners enclosed vast tracts of land to create huge landscaped parks, and those parks acted as a setting for grand houses. These country house estates were dotted with allegorical architectural elements such as grottoes, bridges, and follies. A folly is a building constructed primarily for decoration. 18th and 19th century English gardens often featured mock Roman temples, symbolising classical virtues, Chinese temples, Egyptian pyramids, ruined abbeys, or Tatar tents, to represent different continents or historical eras.

Amy filled her sampler with giraffes, deer, squirrels, dogs, hares and an aviary of birds including owls, parrots, doves and partridges in pear trees. Butterflies, moths and bees can be found no doubt attracted to Amy’s garden by the lilies, tulips and roses that bloom profusely. This charming, idyllic scene is contained within a stylised carnation border. In the Georgian era objects of fascination and wonder were brought back from the far flung corners of the growing British Empire. Aristocrats created their own private menageries with which to entertain their guests, and menageries could be found in the parklands of the great houses such as Goodwood, Stowe and Woburn.

George IV established a menagerie in the Great Park at Windsor Castle. The showpiece of his collection was a female Nubian giraffe, or ‘cameleopard’, as they were sometimes called. The giraffe was a diplomatic gift from the Pasha of Egypt and arrived in London on August 11, 1827, along with several cows that provided her with milk. She was the first giraffe ever seen in England.

Several Amy Canns can be found in historical records. It is possible that our Amy was born in 1821 and can be found in the 1841 census return working as a servant to Charlotte Magann, a lady of independent means lodging in Northampton Street, Bath.

The sampler is stitched in cross stitch over 1 and 2 threads, satin stitch, four sided stitch, double running stitch and Algerian eyelets. Amy’s sampler has been rated as suitable for all levels. Within Amy’s booklet is a comprehensive stitching guide which includes stitch diagrams.

Amy Cann has been brought to you in collaboration with  Lisa Brown who has lovingly stitched the model. At the very core of Hands Across the Sea Samplers is a team of needleworkers who are passionate about antique samplers and being able to share those samplers with you.


Thread Legend

The sampler has been reproduced with Au Ver à Soie d’Alger and the skein quantities calculated based on 1 strand on 36ct fabric. We have provided a conversion for DMC (based on 2 strands), and Needlepoint Inc. silks (based on 1 strand). The model was stitched on 40ct Lakeside Linen Vintage Meadow Rue using Needlepoint Inc. silks. NPI / Soie d’Alger / DMC 754 x 2 / 4622 x 2 / 223 x 2 ~ Shell pink - light 993 x 1 / Noir x 1 / 310 x 1 ~ Black 901 x 1 / 3741 x 1 / 422 x 1 ~ Hazel nut brown - light 646 x 1 / 1846 x 1 / 500 x 1 ~ Blue green – very dark 643 x 2 / 1845 x 2 / 501 x 3 ~ Blue green - dark 663 x 2  /1844 x 2 / 502 x 2 ~ Blue green 954 x 1 / 4535 x 1 / 611 x 1 ~ Drab brown 902 x 1 / 4534 x 1 / 612 x 1 ~ Drab brown - light 187 x 1 / 4124 x 1 / 838 x 1 ~ Beige Brown – very dark 913 x 1 / 4246 x 1 / 869 x 1 ~ Hazel nut brown – very dark 529 x 1 / 206 x 1 / 924 x 1 ~ Grey green – very dark 154 x 1 / 2757 x 1 / 926 x 1 ~ Grey green – medium 152 x 1 / 2756 x 1 / 927 x 1 ~ Grey green - light 131 x 2 / F08 x 2 / 3047 x 2 ~ Yellow beige - light 342 x 1 / 3715 x 1 / 3052 x 1 ~ Green grey - medium LINEN SIZES The design area is 307 stitches (w) x 276 stitches (h). Our calculations have included a 3” margin for finishing and framing. 28ct – Design: 21.93" x 19.71" Fabric: 27.93" x 25.71" 32ct – Design: 19.19" x 17.25" Fabric: 25.19" x 23.25" 36ct – Design: 17.06" x 15.33" Fabric: 23.06" x 21.33" 40ct - Design: 15.35" x 13.80" Fabric: 21.35" x 19.80"

Stitch Guide

The sampler is stitched in cross stitch over 1 and 2 threads, satin stitch, four sided stitch, double running stitch and Algerian eyelets. Amy’s sampler has been rated as suitable for all levels. Cross Stitch is made up of 2 stitches  worked over 1 or 2 threads. Make all your stitches cross in the same direction for a neat and uniform finish.   Satin Stitch –  run a straight stitch between each thread of the fabric in the direction shown on the chart. Use 1 thread  making  repeated passes until the desired coverage is achieved. Four  Sided  Stitch  forms a  square (straight stitch) on the front of the fabric and a cross(diagonal stitch) on the back. Follow the sequence  of stitches below.  Amy Cann was  worked  with  normal  tension  but  it  can  be  used for other projects with a  pulled tension to create a lacy effect.   Double  Running Stitch is worked  in two journeys.  On  the outward   journey  you mark out the motif and on the return trip you  fill  in  the  gaps.  It  is  also  called Holbein Stitch.     Algerian Eyelet – Enter your needle at 1, go down at 2, up at 3, down at 4 and so on until your eyelet stitch is complete. With each stitch pull the thread slightly so that the fabric distorts slightly, as it’s this tensioning action that creates the holes in the centre of each stitch.   oie_transparent-89   Hands Across the Sea Samplers are on hand to help those stitching our charts. If you need assistance or have any questions we can be reached via the CONTACT page on our website.    

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