LETTUCE

And so on to the next strip:

(With a gratuitous shot of the last strip finished out, for good measure.)

This latest pattern is rather wide, with an interesting companion edging. You can also see that the double running foreground is quite quick to work up. This is less than five days stitching, and a very short five days at that thanks to the standard run of work related deadlines. Progress will slow down now because I’m beginning to work in the background. I’m doing it in Italian two-sided framed cross stitch, pulled tightly to achieve a mesh-like effect. I’d be happier with a more profound “draw” and a more meshy presentation. I could probably get that if I were working over 3×3 threads, but I’m stitching over 2×2 here, a stitch size chosen to present as much of this large pattern as possible. But the mesh is still very evident:

There are several examples of this pattern family in museum collections, but I don’t have time to pull them up right now. I’ll save them for a future post in our “Long Lost Twins” series. Here’s the one I’m using for this stitching: Punto di Milano, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Accession #99.176. They tentatively identify it as Spanish, from the 1600s. I’ve seen similarly lettuce-like over foliate patterns identified as being North African or Italian, from around this time and persisting (in simplified form) for the following 100 years or so. But remember – these patterns are from an area in which scholarship is still developing from its Indiana Jones/Avid 19th Century Collector roots. With the paucity of provenance and documentation left by the original collectors, I’d expect to see attributions wander a bit over the next few decades, before modern methods make temporal and location points of origin more clear.


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