Saturday, April 23, 2016

'Pleasure and action make the hours seem short'

A quote from poet and playwright William Shakespeare who died on this day 400 years ago in 1616.

I thought that particular quote relevant to stitching as it gives both pleasure and the action of stitching makes time pass quickly (especially when you are on a deadline for completing that dress for a special occasion!)

Another Shakespeare quote is this one:

                          'I see that fashion wears out more apparel than the man'

This quote is also relevant today in the world of inexpensive ready-to-wear fashion items that we discard as soon as the next fashion must-haves arrive in the stores.
Embroidered nightcap 1600

Shakespeare lived from 1564 to 1616 during what is known as the Elizabethan period. He wrote 37 plays as well as sonnets. He married Anne Hathaway and spent his time between Stratford-on-Avon and London.

Embroidery was used a lot during this time to decorate clothing, window treatments and make items for the home. It was expensive to buy and much of it was especially commissioned. Embroidery from this period is very distinctive as it often features stitches 'in fashion' at the time- blackwork (used on cuffs and collars as it was reversible) ; tent stitch (everyday household items); stumpwork (decorative pieces such as boxes, mirrors, pictures).

The Bradford Table 'Carpet '1600 made in London

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