The last post reminded me of this confessional sampler, stitched by a 19th century woman struggling with thoughts of suicide.
Click the image for more pictures and the complete text.
holy hell. this is… intense reading.
been doing a lot of cross stitch lately. I find “radical cross stitch” as a concept a bit uninspiring because I feel like it’s often approached as parody? like ha ha, look at the incongruity, this bitter or edgy message in this traditionally saccharine medium. but in fact (as this piece shows) embroidery in general and the cross stitched sampler in particular have a rich and complicated and often subversive history. it’s women’s culture, women’s communication, women’s lives. I’m more interested in modern embroidery that’s conceptualised as a continuation rather than a parody of traditional embroidery.