Developing an appreciation for the Bayeux Tapestry

Last week we read about the Norman Conquest and the Battle of Hastings in 1066. To go along with that, I pulled out our book, The Story of a Conquest by Gilles Pivard. I have no idea how I acquired this book, but it is pretty cool. It uses scenes from the Bayeux Tapestry to tell the story of the conquest in a format that appeals to children. I don't know why it didn't become more popular, but it is difficult to find based on how far down it is in the Amazon listings. 

For a craft this week, I decided that we should do some embroidery. At the very least it would make everyone appreciate the time and effort that went into creating the tapestry. After last week's not-so-successful crafting effort, I was a little hesitant to begin this one. I am happy to report that it went far better than I anticipated. 

Everyone was given an embroidery hoop and some muslin and they drew a simple design. I then showed each of them how to do a back stitch and spent my time rethreading needles.

This is G.

H. and L.

Considering the age of most of the participants, I thought these turned out quite well.

L.'s (I drew the tree as she didn't feel up to creating her own design.)

G.'s (This is a "Fat Cow" and NOT a turtle, evidence to the contrary.)

D.'s (who did a great job, but has decided if he never embroiders again it will be too soon.)

K.'s (who felt he was doing well to complete one fish.)


H's (The surprise embroidery savant. She drew the design [it's a dog] and the only thing anyone helped with was the needle threading and knotting. Considering she has slight muscle issues in her right hand due to her brain abnormality, I find her ability to embroider with her right hand nothing short of astonishing. We'll be doing more together.)

P. at first, was just helping me thread needles and trouble-shoot. Then she decided she wanted to do one as well and whipped this off. (She has always had great handwork skills.)

Here is a close-up so you can see how she wrapped the second color around the running stitch in the outside triangle.

Most people had a great time doing this, so I'm leaving all my embroidery stuff out for a while. You just never know until you try what is going to strike someone's fancy.


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