Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Antique Embroidered Bedcover – Interesting Video


Amazon Books

Thanks to a reader’s e-mail about yesterday’s More William Morris Appliqué book review, I looked up a recent episode of the Antique Roadshow in order to take a gander at fabulous example of early 19th century embroidery. I thought I’d point you to it today, so you could take a look, too. I think it’s interesting!

Antique Early American Embroidered Bedcover

The owner of this bedspread picked it up at an antique store for apparently no more than $100 – and it’s value in the market today, according to the evaluator, is somewhere in the $20,000 range. Not a bad investment!

Antique Early American Embroidered Bedcover

But putting the monetary value of the piece aside, what I find interesting is the way the evaluator “reads” the history of the bedspread – well worth watching! It tells of how a woman poured her family story into her embroidery and made a piece of which she was undoubtedly quite proud. The sad take (happy for the lady who purchased it, though!) is that the piece wasn’t apparently valued by the family enough to keep it or to hand it on to friends, if the line has died out. We’ll probably never know anything specific about the embroiderer beyond what she stitched in her bedcover, but her handwork is certainly a tribute to the embroidering woman of the past.

I thought you might enjoy watching this excerpt of the Antique Roadshow episode that contains this piece of needlework history. To skip to the pertinent part, you can move to 20:47 on the time of the video if you like.



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(9) Comments

  1. I saw that myself yesterday just by chance. I don’t watch the show often. It just happen to be on when turning the TV on. I was so awed by the handwork on this. Would love it if there would be away to get a close up picture of the stitching on it. I saw one corner at one point and it looked like crewel or pearl thread. Thanks I didn’t think to look up the video.

  2. Dear Marymentor:

    I have FALLEN IN LOVE with William Morris. I immediately checked out the book you reviewed yesterday and attempting to buy it..found that it’s “out of print” and can only be purchased from Australia for about $90 (includes shipping) ,,,a bit rich for my blood. Next stop I guess is Amazon “used” books…. 🙂 But I GOTTA have this ! This is my muse..combining embroidery/stump/ and applique. The appliques do serve a purpose of “filling in” spaces where my embroidery skills are still not yet perfected….this I like….this I must have…….Judy in Pittsburgh

  3. Judy-thank you so much for putting this on here. I missed that show, but, enjoyed your site. I only know a few ambroidery stitches, but, have enjoyed those few since a young girl. Friends call me a little nutty for doing the hand work. They just don’t understand. Here is another secret: I still iron my clothes. Thank you again for your site. Jan/Pa

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