Time to share with you what I worked on during my vacation. Quite a while ago I started talking with The George Washington Foundation about doing a piece of needlework to commemorate Ferry Farm, the boyhood home of George Washington and his family. The original site of the Washington house was excavated in July 2008. Exciting times for sure. Many, many items have been excavated from the grounds before and since then. It is an ongoing adventure. This summer the archeologists will be investigating areas believed to be the location of some of the farm's outbuildings. For all of the exciting details, visit their wonderful site.
During the archeological digs, many enameled creamware fragments were found, dating from 1765 to 1775, dates which coincide with the end of Mrs. Washington's residence at Ferry Farm. The artifacts represent pieces from such vessels as teapots, tea bowls, saucers, slop bowls, milk jugs, and sugar pots. The ceramics are hand-painted over a lead glaze with red, black, yellow, and green floral designs. Believe it or not, shards were found with a "cherry" motif! I'm sure you remember the legends about George and the cherry tree. To have found a "cherry" on a ceramic piece is just perfect. This was the inspiration for the cherry at the center of the sampler I recently designed.
Here is a picture of the shards that I worked with. Note that the colors are not as bright as they probably were at the time of their use. Having been buried all this time has softened them. The colors I chose are more like what the shards look like today. Even with all the DMC floss available, I was still not able to match the shards perfectly.
The design is based on a typical 18th century sampler style. It features the initials of all family members that lived there, the dates of residence, and other motifs of the period. The center oval contains my interpretation of the cherry and cherry blossom motif. I feel so honored to have been involved in this project. I am also working on needle necessaires, such as a scissor and needle case and a pinball
featuring the "cherry" motif.
If you are ever in the historic Fredericksburg area, you might enjoy the tour and all the artifacts on display. Visit the website to find out all the interesting things going on at Ferry Farm.
The Ferry Farm "Cherry" Sampler will be sold for the first time at the July 4th festivities, actually the festivities will take place on July 3rd in Fredericksburg this year. The actual sampler will be displayed at the gift shop at Ferry Farm. I do not know if this design will be available in your area shops because of the subject matter. So, if you would like to have it, please email me or call me at 540.371.6377. The price is $11.00 plus postage (the frame is also available) and a portion of each sale of this design will go to The George Washington Foundation to further the wonderful research and many activities that will continue at the site.
Here it is!
Just so you know, I will be starting a new "DELIVERING" series really soon. A sneak peak will be in my next Blog entry. It will be seasonal starting with Halloween. If you would like to be on an Automatic for this new series, just let us know. I think you'll like it.
Wishing you "Many Happy Stitches",