Tuesday 11 February 2014

eCards From The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

I love to study this painting by Allan Ramsay of Horace Walpole's fabulously attired nieces, which he made in 1765. This is the time of the Scottish Enlightenment and here we see two noble ladies in conversation, while one works on an intricate embroidery in hand. I am astonished that an embroidery such as the one portrayed did not require a frame to stop the work from distorting. Maybe readers can enlighten me? Horace Walpole was a great man of letters who was responsible for the building of the neo-Gothick Strawberry Hill. His nieces were Laura (sometimes Louise) Keppel and Charlotte, countess Dysart, Lady Huntingtower. Oooh I so wish I could be a Lady Huntingtower - maybe some other lifetime? This splendid painting can be sent as an eCard to friends courtesy of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts - click here for more.


  1. I almost always stitch in hand and tend not to get distortion. I don't know if I am just lucky? I was taught by my grandmother and mother, neither of whom used a frame, and it never occured to me to use one. I bought a very expensive slate frame when I signed up to Thistle Threads, gentleman's glittering nightcap. I got the fabric all ready- string stitched into the side to help with the stretching - and then couldn't bring myself to do it - and stitched the whole thing in hand. The only time I use a frame is when I am making items of needlelace to sew onto a stumpwork item, but when sewing the needlelace onto the main item, I'm back to frameless again.

  2. It amazes me that you stitched your wonderful gentleman's nightcap in hand! You have a great talent!