Stitch It Up!

It’s been almost thirty years, and I can still hear it now….

The unique sound of dial-up on my new computer and those infamous words…YOU’VE GOT MAIL!

Our first foray into the realm of the Internet was through AOL.  The whole family would gather around, excitedly waiting for our Dell computer to connect….and voila! we were in uncharted, wonderful, scary waters.  Through that simple connection, I found a wealth of information relating to my then obsession, counted cross stitch.

I made a new friend, who guided me to chat rooms and message boards relating to all sorts of needlework.  She introduced me to a whole new level of stitched art, called “band samplers”.  Worked usually on linen over two threads, the band sampler consists of rows or “bands” of intricate stitches that often included beads, cotton, silk or perle cotton thread, and various other textures like braided metallic threads.


Photo Courtesy of Joanne Perry of Serendipitous Stitching

Fabulous, yes?

I was also encouraged to buy a reference book called “The Proper Stitch” by Darlene O’Steen.  Ms. O’Steen gives the long and rich history of samplermaking which she documents back to the 1500’s, as well as detailed instructions on each stitch. She concludes with two stunning sampler charts, The Proper Stitch Sampler and Our English Heritage Sampler. I have yet to choose which one I’m going to stitch….I need to practice the various stitches first!


Thanks to my friend Lori a.k.a. mrskvlca on Instagram, I now have a HUGE stash of linen, Lugana and Aida fabric, silk and cotton threads, and beads to choose from. Having a standing frame to work on also lends to the creative and authentic setting.


And finally, for your viewing pleasure, a video from YouTube that gives you an idea of what a band sampler is. This one is unique….the bands are normally stitched in horizontal rows. The rows on this video, are diagonal! Thus, this sampler is called a Twisted Band Sampler.    

Do you have any experience with this type of stitching?  I’d love to know!



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5 thoughts on “Stitch It Up!

  1. You need to check out Sharon Boggin and her Pin Tangle website. She has done some fabulous band samplers and her stitch guides are so easy to follow. I’m just starting my first band sampler and I’m about on my third row. It’s so fun

  2. I loved the clip of McKenzie’s Twisted Band Sampler you showed too. Nicole from Northern Expressions writes wonderful instructions for all her samplers, it’s like having a friend sitting next to you and chatting about stitching with the way she writes.

    • Good morning Jo!
      I really enjoyed McKenzie’s video too. I’m not near ready to tackle anything that challenging, but I love the inspiration!
      I’ll have check out Nicole from NE. Thank you for the recommendation and thank you for taking the time to stop by and share!Hugs,

  3. Pingback: Dori’s In Stitches! Episode #71 | Hobbies Up To Here

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