Caroline’s delightful red sampler is brought to you as a printed booklet and as an instant pdf download. Details of the instant pdf download can be found HERE.
At Hands Across the Sea Samplers, we are very attracted to red samplers and particularly so, when they were stitched in Norfolk.
Caroline Page tells us that she completed her delightful sampler when she was 8 years old in 1832. We believe that Caroline was the daughter of a wealthy farmer, Isaac Page, and his wife Martha Bacon. The Norfolk Bishop’s Transcripts reveal that Isaac and Martha married on December 22, 1814 and had five children between the years 1817 and 1825.
Caroline was the “baby” of the family. She was christened on February 18, 1825. Her father died shortly after on March 15, and her mother died in the December of 1835 when Caroline was only 10 years of age.
The family lived at Saxlinghan Hall in Saxlingham Nethergate, which is located some 9.5 miles (15 km) south of Norwich.
Caroline stitched her sampler as part of her education. It is most likely that Caroline attended the private school at Saxlingham or had a governess. We know that her father was a person of property, and that under the terms of his will there was a trust fund for Caroline.
Caroline married Thomas Richard Howes of Tacolneston Hall Farm, on September 15, 1846. The Howes family were wealthy farmers.
We have failed to find any further record of Caroline until the 1871 census return. It is possible that Caroline and Thomas were travelling or lived abroad. From newspaper archives we know that Thomas died at 37 years of age in London on December 2, 1863. Caroline can be found in the 1871 census living in Yelverton, Norfolk. She is recorded as a widow living on income from invested money.
In the 1881 census, she is recorded as living with her sister Amelia and brother-in-law, Alfred Thrower at Thrower’s Farm in Yelverton. Alfred had a substantial land holding.
We can find no record of Caroline and Thomas having children. Caroline died on March 6, 1886 at 61 years of age. At the time of her death, Caroline was financially secure and left a sizeable estate, which included her needlework.
The sampler she had stitched when she was just 8 years of age is her legacy to us. We are so pleased that it has survived and that we are all able to enjoy replicating her needlework.
The sampler has been rated as suitable for all levels of ability. Caroline stitched her sampler on 30ct linen with cotton thread. She used either a double running stitch (our preferred stitch) or a back stitch around the margins of her sampler, cross stitch over one and two threads, and Algerian eyelets.
Our grateful thanks go to Bhooma Aravamudan for exquisitely stitching the model of Caroline’s sampler. At the very core of Hands Across the Sea Samplers, there is a team of needleworkers who are passionate about antique samplers and being able to share those samplers with you.
Caroline’s sampler has been reproduced using Soie 100.3 from Au Ver à Soie. We have provided conversions for Soie d’Alger and DMC. Estimated thread quantities for varying linen counts and the number of strands of thread used have been listed below.
On 46ct to 56ct linen with 1 strand of Soie 100.3 #335 x 1
On 36ct to 46ct linen with 1 strand of Soie d’Alger #2646 x 2
On 28ct linen with 2 strands of Soie d’Alger #2646 x 4
On 40ct linen with 1 strand of DMC #3777x 1
On 36ct linen with 2 strands of DMC #3777 x 2
On 28ct linen with 2 strands of DMC #3777 x 3
** On 46ct to 56ct linen we recommend that you use Soie Surfine #2335 for working the cross stitches over one thread of linen.
The model was stitched using 46ct Zweigart-based linen that was overdyed to the shade Marbled Pointer from xJuDesigns. We recommend that you use a thread, fabric, and a count that you enjoy working with.
The design area is 124 stitches (w) x 176 stitches (h). Our calculations include a 3″ margin for finishing and framing.
28ct linen: Design: 8.86″ x 12.57″ Fabric: 14.86″ x 18.57″
30ct linen: Design: 8.27″ x 11.73″ Fabric: 14.27″ x 17.73″
32ct linen: Design: 7.75″ x 11.00″ Fabric: 13.75″ x 17.00″
36ct linen: Design: 6.89″ x 9.78″ Fabric: 12.89″ x 15.78″
40ct linen: Design: 6.20″ x 8.80″ Fabric: 12.20″ x 14.80″
46ct linen: Design: 5.39″ x 7.65″ Fabric: 11.39″ x 13.65″
56ct linen: Design: 4.43″ x 6.29″ Fabric: 10.43″ x 12.29″
62/52ct linen: Design: 4.00″ x 6.77″ Fabric: 10.00″ x 12.77″
The sampler has been rated as suitable for all levels of ability.
Caroline stitched her sampler on 30ct linen with cotton thread. She used either a double running stitch (our preferred stitch) or a back stitch around the margins of her sampler, cross stitch over one and two threads, and Algerian eyelets.
Cross stitch ~ Is made up of two stitches worked over one or two threads. You should make all your stitches cross in the same direction for a neat and uniform finish.
When stitching over one thread, you should be careful not to pull the thread through the intersection of the woven linen threads. The warp and weft fibres are not “interlocked” at intersections; they simply pass over and under one another. As a result, when stitching over one thread, some stitches can slip and disappear. Lay your stitches away from the direction you are working. This prevents the thread from slipping through the intersections.
Double Running Stitch ~ When working from your left to the right, bring your needle up at 1 and down at 2, then moving to the right, bring your needle up at 3 and go back down at 4. Move to the right and bring your needle up at 5 and go back down at 6. On the return journey fill in the gaps.
Algerian eyelets – When worked over four threads of linen eight stitches are laid to create an eyelet.
Do not tug on the thread using your needle as your thread will soon break. Instead, apply pressure by pulling on the thread close to the stitch. Even tension should be applied so each individual stitch sits well within the eyelet.
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 email, address shown below, or the contact page on our website. Our website has stitching tutorials which can be found in the “Sewing Basket and Tools” section.