07 January 2015

Mary Hurst SAL Week One

On the 1st of January myself and 60 other (and counting!) stitchers organised by Nicola from the Our Scarlett Letter Years Blog, started the incredible Mary Hurst Band Sampler as a group learning project. Nicola has very generously provided lots of photo tutorials on the various stitches on the FB page and group blog.
I didn't start until yesterday, when everyone was back at work and the house was finally clean and tidy after Christmas.
I am stitching with AVAS silks on 36ct Edinburgh linen colour 'Sand' which is a lovely warm orange/gold colour. I was really happy with my floss toss, I love the colours of the silk on this linen.
I started with great enthusiasm, but have had lots of problems with this sampler already, I had to unpick the first letter twice until I finally got the hang of the counted satin stitch. I am padding mine and going over each stitch twice with one strand of silk to get a nice coverage on the fabric. I started using the pale blue 111 as charted, but I began to have doubts, the whole of the top section is stitched in this colour, and I don't think I want a large section of this icy blue at the top of my sampler. I think it jars a little with the warm linen. Perhaps it's because I am not really a blue person!
I started again this morning with the 2912 pale pink, which I think I prefer, it is a nice warm colour
Here they are side by side, this photo shows the colour of the linen better. I have stopped for now, I need to think about what I want to do and make my mind up or I'll never get this stitched!
I have committed to working on this once a week, it will probably take all year and beyond but there is no hurry. I am looking forward to learning some of the more complicated counted stitches and sharing in this group project.

Project Details:
Mary Hurst 1661 Sampler by The Scarlet Letter
(original held in the Fitzwilliam Museum Cambridge, England)
Stitch Count approx. 112 x 598
36 count Zweigart Edinburgh Linen colour 'Sand'
Au ver a soie, soie d'alger silks as charted
Started 6th January 2015


  1. Looking so pretty! It's funny cause in the pics of the model, the color looks white. Hope you can make a decision. I think both look nice.

  2. I think they both work, but I would tend to use the blue on a sandy-coloured fabric. I think....!

  3. Anonymous8/1/15 08:16

    Both look good but you have to go with what makes you happy.


  4. I think I would probably pick blue... but maybe tomorrow it would be Pink.... I agree with ukcitycrafter... pick whats makes you happy!!!

  5. PINK! ...but I'm not a blue person either. It looks like the stitches are very tiny! I'm glad you are giving yourself lots of time for this project.

  6. looking forward to watching this one come together