Following on my last post behind the ideas for the Enlightenment childhood and play also have a large role in this body of work. Whilst checking out the textile catalogues I found a number of works made by young women under the age of 14 years. On viewing they are quite extraordinary needlework pieces and all are items called "samplers".
Taken from wikipedia it defines a needlecraft sampler as "A (needlework) sampler is a piece of embroidery produced as a demonstration or test of skill in needlework. It often includes the alphabet, figures, motifs, decorative borders and sometimes the name of the person who embroidered it and the date. The word sampler is derived from the Latin ‘exemplum’ - an example."
Here is a link to make your own sampler and also a link to images of samplers
Below is a series of image from the Kyneton Museum Samplers.
Kyneton Museum 3143
Sheet of Handworked Samples c1880
Eight small samples of hand work, knitting, tapestry, button and buttonhole cross stitch and fancy work. Produced by L.Banks at Standard Level 4 in 1880
Kyneton Museum 215.00
Sampler c 1895
Childs sampler in shape of tiny apron including green waist straps decorated with green embroidery, various designs, leaf pattern, drawn thread work and 2 button holes
Kyneton Museum 3267.00
Large embroidery sampler of alphabets and numbers with verse, animals, flowers, birds red, blue, green, orange, yellow, grey wool at the bottom the embroiders name "Emily Fracis Victoria Hamilton" Kyneton August 15 1891
Kyneton Museum 5676.00
Child's sampler of stitches, white material with blue stitching, button hole, blanket, feather etc