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Colonial embroidery sketch

Colonial embroidery sketch

© Memorial Hall Museum, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association

According to Margaret Whiting, the very first pattern saved in the portfolio of drawings which she and Ellen Miller created to document the region's Colonial embroideries was of a piece owned by Deerfield's museum, Memorial Hall. The above drawing, by Margaret Whiting, is adapted from a section of a head cloth stitched by Rebekah Dickinson in the 18th century. The embroidery is now owned by the Memorial Hall Museum. As Blue and White Society designs did again and again, Margaret focused on an arrangement of just several of the motifs appearing in Dickinson's work. Whiting has transformed a symmetrical and balanced detail holding a centralized but relatively small space in Dickinson's original design into the dominant focus of her drawing by increasing its scale and maintaining its centralized position. Many future Blue and White Society embroideries feature a design with a centralized focus characterized by harmony, balance and a sense of rhythm, qualities which Ellen Miller and Margaret Whiting saw in the details of 18th-century needlework.

c. 1905
Margaret C. Whiting
H. 11.5" x W. 8"