Wisdom of the Ages

Wisdom of the Ages

Wisdom of the Wise cross stitch sampler

Wisdom of the Wise

Merrie Ziady, 1974
Materials: Cotton thread on cotton
Dimensions: 10" H X 12.75" W
Stitches: Cross

This sampler was a gift for the stitcher's mother, Alice V. Henderson, of Corvallis. When she died in 1995, it came back to the original owner and sampler maker. The verse reads:

"The wisdom of the wise is an uncommon degree of common sense."

Frances Stilwell sampler

Beauty Is In The Iris

M. Frances Stilwell, 1984
Dimensions: 8" diameter

This sampler is an original design and verse, created by Frances Stilwell. Below she describes what prompted her to design a sampler with an iris and how she came to write the enigmatic verse: "Beauty Is In The Iris of the Beholder".

"At the start of my adult art career in 1981 I was hell-bent to get into shows. When I saw the announcement of the Keizer Art Center one I figured all the entries would be paintings and drawings and I needed something unusual to be accepted. Calling All Kids magazine used to have riddles in the back that we children always read. They gave ideas for supper conversation at my grandparents house where we would challenge each with such things as "Prestidigitator--spell it with two letters." My grandmother brought that to the table. So my brain was trained to work with riddles.

For my entry in Keizer, I bought a garden iris at a florist shop, drew it, and placed the drawing on a big sheet of graph paper. I quite naturally came up with the riddle since my brain was trained that way; I bought the thread for the blue iris in a shop in the Old Cannery, then was stumped as to what colors for the others. During frequent trips back there with my graph paper and the sampler, the saleswoman there helped me decide on colors."

This sampler was successfully exhibited at the Keiser Art Center in 1984. In addition, it has been exhibited at Stevenson's Fine Framing and at the United Methodist Church, Corvallis, Oregon.

African Violets sampler by Walter Frankel

African Violets

Walter Frankel, 1987
Materials: Cotton thread on linen
Dimensions: 12.75" H X 10.5" W
Stitches: Cross stitch, back stitch

The sampler was made for the stitcher's mother-in-law, Helen K. Kiefer. The pattern is a contemporary design that was not signed by the designer. The verse reads: "To grow 'em is to love 'em."

Old Shaker Tune stitched sampler

Olde Shaker Tune

Joyce Skogen, 1994
Materials: Cotton thread on linen
Dimensions: 8.25" H X 8" W
Stitches: Cross, backstitch, 3/4 stitch, and straight

This sampler is from the American Heritage Designs of Sandra Sullivan. It reflects our American Shaker Heritage and includes the words to a popular shaker song: Tis a Gift to be Simple.

Blue Sampler 2002

Blue Sampler

Kimberly Hart, 2002
Dimensions: 14.5" H X 4" W
Stitches: Cross

This monochromatic sampler is stitched with the ever popular blue thread on white background. In style it is similar to 17th century band samplers stitched by young girls in England. The verse reads: "The Needle's Work Shall be my Heart".

See how the lilies flourish needlework sampler

See How the Lilies Flourish

Karen Skjei, 2002
Materials: Cotton thread on linen
Dimensions: 12" H X 11.75" W
Stitches: Cross, French knots

I purchased the original pattern for this sampler from Friendship Crossing in Corvallis, Oregon. The verse reads:

"See how the lilies flourish white and fair
See how the ravens fed from Heaven are
Then ne'er distrust thy God for cloth and bread
Whilst lilies flourish and ravens fed."

21st century darning sampler

Mercy A. Chandler Sampler

Kristen McHuron-Guss, 2004
Materials: Cotton thread on linen
Dimensions: 20.75" H X 18.5" W
Stitches: Rococo, long-legged, flat, eyelet, oriental, four-legged, buttonhole, hen, cat, zigzag chain, double strait cross, tapestry, and bullion.

This sampler is a reproduction of one that dates to 1795 and is in a private collection. The verse reads:

"Give me a house that will never decay;
And garments that will never wear away.
Give me a friend that will never depart;
Give me a Ruler that can rule my heart."

Maude Bailey Darning Sampler

Maude Bailey Darning Sampler

Kristen McHuron-Guss, 2005-2006
Materials: Silk thread on 36 count linen
Dimensions: 7 1/8" H X 11 W"

The top of this sampler is a reproduction of a darning sampler that dates to 1914. Darning samplers were popular as a way of teaching young girls to mend clothing. The goal was to match the weave of the original fabric.

The verse was added by the stitcher. It reads:

"Reweave, repair, patch-up, make do.
My darning skills I here review."

This sampler was a project completed by a local group of sampler enthusiasts and stitchers. The bottom band recognizes the group's collaboration: "Shared in friendship, our sampler group, of Linn-Benton County, Oregon, 2005-2006."