Sophia’s sampler is offered to you in two different formats ~ as an instant PDF download and as a printed booklet. Details of the printed booklet can be found HERE.
As a collector of needlework, the Micheál and Elizabeth Feller collection fired my passion for the genre of school-girl samplers. When I was afforded the opportunity to acquire several samplers from their collection in 2020, I was beyond excited.
I knew the collection from having visited their home and from the countless hours spent pouring over the pages of the two books featuring their samplers. I was like a child in a candy store when I revisited their home in-between the lockdowns that defined 2020. After some serious deliberation and with much gratitude to Mike and Liz together with the generosity of my husband, I added some truly wonderful samplers to my private collection.
I hope overtime to reproduce some, if not all of the samplers, so that you too can enjoy them. Sophia Doggett is the first of the samplers I have reproduced, and I am delighted to present her to you in this booklet.
Sophia appealed to me partly because the sampler was stitched in an area that some of my ancestors hailed from. Nailsea is a rural town in the North of Somerset, about eight miles south-west of Bristol.
Visually the patterns of the Quaker medallions fascinate me and make my fingers itch to stitch. The stitching of the medallions in halves intrigues me and I have often wondered “why” the girls opted to stitch them in this way.
In the Feller Collection book #2 Sophia’s sampler can be found featured on page 41 and is described by Elizabeth Feller as follows:
“… possesses certain unique traits. The first and most significant of these is the formation of the border. Where the majority of the Quaker medallion samplers present their half octagons with the cut edge uniformly to the outside border, this sampler dovetails that cut edge so that it alternately faces the border and then the centre of the sampler. A further unique point is the medallion in the upper left with two stylised confronting birds.”
Sophia recorded on her sampler “Nailsea 1804”. Whilst there is no record of a Quaker school in Nailsea, it is possible that Sophia was a pupil boarding at Sidcot and recorded “Nailsea” as the location of her home rather than that of the school.
Sophia married Mark May, a farmer, on April 8, 1816. Mary, their first of eight children, was baptised the following February. The family can be found in the census returns at Mays Green in the village of Puxton. Mark died in 1867 and Sophia two years later in 1869, just before her 80th birthday.
We hope that you enjoy stitching Sophia’s sampler. Our reproduction is a “Token of Love” from us to you.
With grateful thanks to Linda Clews who lovingly stitched the model. 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.