A place for Designer Tanya Marie Willis Anderson of The Sampler Girl
to journal about her love for all things Jane Austen.

04 December 2013

December Greetings, Janeite friends!

I can't believe it was September since I last wrote here ... goodness! Hope you all are doing well and have been stitching lots. The Sampler Girl has been most busy and there's a lot going on. There's even  The Sampler Girl PODCAST now available for free subscription in iTunes as well as downloadable on my other Blog !!

More Jane designs will be coming along shortly. Stay tuned and have a lovely holiday season.
- - -
Anne hoped she had outlived the age of blushing; but the age of emotion she certainly had not.
-Jane Austen, Persuasion

01 August 2013

Janeite iPhone Cover Pattern!!!

Every Janeite on her mobile needs this stitched on her iPhone cover! Cover is made by Coats and Clark and can be found at your local craft/hobby stores as well as Walmart in the yarn/cross stitch aisle.

Janeite iPhone Cover Pattern
Copyright 2013 The Sampler Girl

18 July 2013

A Year with Jane Austen - NEW SERIES!!
Premier design, August

A Year with Jane Austen, August 

Copyright 2013 The Sampler Girl

Click HERE for all details on chart!
**Premier pattern ... delight in this verse excerpt from Miss Austen's novel, Persuasion that reads:
"They went to the sands, to watch the flowing of the tide, which a fine south-easterly breeze was bringing in all the grandeur which so flat a shore admitted. They praised the morning; gloried in the sea; sympathized in delight of the fresh-feeling breeze - and were silent ... "

Exciting NEW series ... beginning with August, A Year with Jane Austen is sure to beckon the stitching Janeite in you. Each month's design will display a special verse by Miss Austen themed to the occasion. Hope you enjoy this wonderful collection as it unfolds!  
A Year with Jane Austen, September will be available end of August.

16 July 2013


Thank you for the invitation!:-)

My name is Maja, I am from Hungary, Middle-Eastern Europe.

I love Jane Austen, especially Pride and Prejudice with Mr. Darcy. I met Colin Firth when he was in Budapest.  He is such a normal, opened, down-to-earth man, no fancies like many actors. He was very nice and signed my books, too:-)

I don't have any PP themed stitching yet, though I stitch only for 2 years, so I am a freshman:-)  I met Tanja's designs before, I have many favourites, it will be hard to choose I must say:-))

Until I bring my first Jane Austen themed needlework, I show you my latest sketch of Darcy. (Painting is my other guilty pleasure.)

I also have a Pinterest album dedicated to His Era, you are welcome to visit:)

03 July 2013

on the weather

Just thought I would share a pic of my last finish.
Thank you Tanya for this lovely chart, and for the sale!!! Guess I will visit.... :)
All the best

Jane Austen On the weather, 28ct white linen, recommended threads


ALL patterns discounted today through July 6th! 
Visit The Sampler Girl website for all details.


Welcome, July!!
There is currently a SALE going on at The Sampler Girl website.
ALL patterns are discounted for a 4th of July SALE ...
Booklets are $5 and the other designs are 25%, etc ...
nothing like adding stitching to your summer basket of stash.
SALE continues through July 6th!

17 June 2013

New Pattern! Strawberries at Donwell Abbey, a summer pocket

Very excited about this sweet design!!!

Now available: 
Strawberries at Donwell Abbey, a summer pocket, copyright 2013 The Sampler Girl

12 June 2013

dreaming of Jane

Last night I dreamt I was walking through a Jane Austen museum in England and it was. so. real. You know those kinds of dreams? Where you are with people you know, but don't. I was on a family vacation across the street from this particular museum/house that was all about Jane. For some reason I had wandered off from our group, and found myself in an auditorium of sorts. Thinking I was going to stay for a Jane Austen lecture but noticed it was more of a choral group preparing to perform so I dashed to the back of the arena and found myself in another time and place, again, sort of. I had stumbled on this Jane Austen museum (with a shop!!) and immediately began going about the rooms. The rooms were rickety and I recall following a tour guide along a very shaky stairway - we were holding on to a rope of sorts. Weird. Aren't dreams just a jumbled mess sometimes. 

We continued on and then were outside going up a gorgeous English countryside but still attached to this museum. Can't explain it. I know. The view was breathtaking and then I was back in the museum and looking about the shop. Oh the shop!!!!!!!!!!! They had things with the name, Jane Austen, on everything. It was bliss to this sleeping Janeite. Then the tour guide appeared again and ushered me into another room where the smallest of quilt fragments was framed behind glass. It was apparently a quilt (in miniature) worked by Miss Austen. I remember thinking how odd it was so tiny. I recall being so excited to see it in person. Again, who knows why it was so small in my dream. And it was frayed - almost like tattered. I wanted to get back in the museum shop and then .... I woke up!!!!!!!!!

06 June 2013

there's only one Darcy

Do you watch Mad Men? I do. Love that show. Hate that show. Love it. Anyhoo ... if you're familiar with the character, Pete Campbell, that actor will be playing Darcy on stage. I just don't see it .... here's a link for more info. Methinks they could have gotten someone else ... really?!!!


Coming 'very' soon ...

New pattern for stitching Janeites available soon ...

Strawberries at Donwell Abbey - stay tuned!!

03 March 2013

A visit to Jane Austen's cottage in Chawton - Sorry, this is a long post!

Me again,
I just wanted to say that my birthday treat to visit Jane Austen's house in Chawton finally came round last Thursday. I was so excited. We were staying overnight close by so could spend as long as I wanted meandering around her beautiful atmospheric cottage.

There is the bricked in window which Edward arranged for their privacy, there is the vegetable garden Mrs Austen tended and there is the well that is still used today to measure the water table in East Hampshire.

The day wasn't very bright but at least it wasn't raining. The cottage stands very near the road in what is now a much quieter small village. St Nicholas's church where Jane's mother and dearly beloved sister are buried nestles in a little hollow a short distance away and, to the side of that is the still imposing large, elegant Chawton House.

Once inside the cottage, it is impossible not to be transported back to when Jane would have contentedly sat at her little table writing. Her spirit is everywhere and as I stood quietly alone in some of the rooms I could almost feel her breath and hear her light footfall or maybe it was just the tingle of excitement I felt at finally achieving one of my greatest ambitions....haha!

Come round with me and share the joys of being in Jane's house and gardens.

Although Jane and Cassandra loved to walk, often for several hours each afternoon, here is the very donkey carriage they used for little trips out to do their shopping.

Lets go in and have a peep.

Here is the kitchen. It's attached to the house but has it's own door. There was a bowl of lavender and muslin on the scrubbed pine table and we were invited to make a little lavender bag.

The cottage is beautifully light and spacious although it has changed quite a bit from the days when the Austens lived there. After Cassandra died the property was neglected for a while then it was divided up into three smaller cottages for workers. It still had tenants in it in 1948 when it was bought to begin it's life as a museum.

 The cottage opens up to the large drawing room. This is the largest room in the cottage and is where the Austen ladies would have entertained visitors and enjoyed pastimes like sewing and painting. It's in this room that the large window which faced the road was blocked in and replaced by an elegant Regency window which overlooked the garden

The Dining Parlour follows and it's here where Jane spent her mornings writing at this tiny walnut table. After her death, Mrs Austen gave the table to a manservant but it was eventually returned to it's old home. Jane also owned a writing slope which travelled everywhere with her but that is now in the British Library. On one of their many travels, whilst changing coaches, Jane's writing slope with all her precious manuscripts was accidentally left on the coach which was on it's way to the port but luckily, it was found to be missing and someone sent off after the coach to retrieve it...phew!!

This is the family room which now displays a lot of memorabilia but, it was originally Mrs Austen's bedroom.

Here in the dressing room, there are display cases of items related to dress: some tiny satin slippers, fans, a handkerchief made for Edward by one of his sisters and also a pretty little needle case made by Jane for her niece Louise. The handmade wrapper with the words With Aunt Jane's love is also there.

This small room holds a reproduction tent bed. spread with the quilt that Jane made with her mother and sister. The travelling trunk was owned by Edward.

The red felt jacket belonged to Mrs Austen and was cut down and made into a little riding jacket for Francis when he was 7

Below is Jane and Cassandra's bedroom. The tent bed on display was recreated from details describing the beds that the reverend Austen ordered for his two daughters from Ring Brothers in Basingstoke in 1794. The room is not very big but it only needed to be big enough to house the two beds. A closet in the wall contained a chamber pot below and a basin for washing on the shelf above

On the walls are various portraits, a lace collar made by Jane and a sampler thought to be stitched by Cassandra.

A copy of the watercolour Cassandra did of Jane which is now in the National Portrait Gallery.

I took so many photographs I found it hard to choose which ones I thought might interest you. There were many original book illustrations, cabinets full of miniatures and personal items as well as mannequins dressed in beautiful period costumes. I hope I chose the right ones to show you all and that this tour has been as enjoyable for you as it was for me. I finish off with a bitter sweet photo of a lock of Jane's hair. Hair jewellery was given as gifts to remind loved ones of each other when they were apart. it was woven into bracelets, placed in brooches, rings and pendants.  It is known that Cassandra lovingly took some locks of Jane's hair immediately after her death to give to various members of the family. 
Also displayed are the two topaz crosses given to Jane and Cassandra by their brother Charles after he received £30.00 prize money for capturing the French vessel the Scipio .......'He has been buying Gold chains and Topaze crosses for us - he must be well scolded...' Letter to Cassandra. 27 May 1801

Hi everyone,
Here is my latest JA finish. I have wanted to stitch this little design by Tanya for ages and finally got round to it a few weeks ago as part of my personal 2013 challenge of stitching all the JA related charts in my stash this year.
I stitched it on 40 count linen using all the recommended threads except the GAST Green Pasture recommended for the flowers. Unfortunately, my Green Pasture did not look anything like the lovely teal blue/green that was portrayed in the photo so I had to do some substituting. In the end I used some forget me not type blues. It didn't give the effect I loved in Tanya's picture but it had to do.
I finished it as a flat fold and sent it to another JA loving friend who i know will give it a good home

30 January 2013

Hi everyone,
I'm new to this blog although I have shared Tanya's love of Jane Austen for many years now. Previously, I've enjoyed calling in regularly and seeing all the lovely Jane Austen related stitching and have always felt so inspired by all the gorgeous finishes. So, this year, with a big birthday approaching (!!) I've decided to set myself a challenge to stitch as many of Tanya's designs as possible. I'd love to get to the end of the year and feel I've achieved some of my Jane Austen dreams.
I've started with a very small design called Birthday Crowns for Jane Austen. I began it on Friday and finished Saturday morning. It's stitched on 40 count cream linen using two of DMC's varigated threads, 99 and 111. I made only a very slight alteration in that I didn't stitch the pink insert in the large crown at the top. I tried it out but wasn't happy with the colour combination.

I don't have a blog but have a photo album on picture trail here:
In the Gifts album is a little tin I stitched for another Jane Austen lover who is also on this group, Barb. She's a very dear online friend with whom I share a birthday. I adapted Tanya's Northanger  Abbey design and covered a tin and made a little scissors fob.
In a couple of weeks, as a birthday treat I am visiting Jane Austen's house at Chawton so I will take lots of photos and share them with you  :-)

Thanks everyone and I promise future posts won't be this long :-)

28 January 2013

Anniversary Finish

As soon as I saw this freebie on Tanya’s blog I had to stitch it…..

it’s stitched on 28c evenweave using Dinky Dye’s silks…..
Thanks for a great design Tanya
Hugs & Stitches

13 January 2013

A Finish!

Hi All. Here is my latest finish. This was a joy to stitch. I used my own colour choice and backed it with fabric I bought in France which maybe Moda.
Hope you like it. Love Michelle xx

09 January 2013

New Pattern! Simply Jane Austen, a Motif Sampler

A new year! A new Jane-inspired pattern!

Copyright 2013 The Sampler Girl

24 December 2012

Every Time a Bell Rings

Hello All

I just had to share this picture with you as I knew we would sit down to watch Its A Wonderful Life this evening and it has just finished so I am sat here blurry eyed with tissues on hand.

I love this design - thanks Tanya.

Merry Christmas to you all.

Love Michelle xx

22 December 2012

Good Tidings

Hello My Friends

I just had to share my recent finish with you.   You will all know it as Good Tidings although I have only stitched the top part.    I was going to continue with stitching the bottom part of it it but then I decided I wanted to stitch one of my latest purchases from Tanya 'Every Time a Bell Rings' and I want to get both pieces displayed in time for Christmas.   I have literally just started Every Time A Bell Rings though so I have to stitch-a-plenty tomorrow!

Can I just wish you all the most wonderful Christmas and send you all good wishes for the New Year 2013.

Love Michelle xx

09 September 2012

Reading with Jane

I managed to complete this little treasure last night, I’ve been doing an hour on this each evening once my daily study had finished…


Reading with Jane – The Sampler Girl freebie

Stitched on Jayne’s Attic hand-dyed 28c evenweave ‘Sweet Pea’

DMC threads (own choice)

I think I will finish this into a little hanging for my desk!


Hugs & Stitches


17 August 2012

Lydia Bennet goes to Brighton - new!

Jane Austen has bewitched me yet again with her glorious novel, PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. I've always felt bad for Lydia Bennet. I know, I know - she was such a frivolous thing yet I think we forget sometimes ... she was only 15 years old!! Having been a teenager once upon a time AND having a teenager in the house (heaven help me!), that age-mind has its own mindset and well, it is a rough road at times to steer teenagers on the correct path. Mrs. Bennet did have several daughters to find husbands for and Lydia was ... well, Lydia! She was a free spirit and eager for some adventure. To Brighton she sought this attention and this new design of mine is for her.

Pattern is now available on the website - click here: http://www.thesamplergirl.com/catalog.php?item=539 for all details.

ANNUAL SEASIDE SUMMER SALE is going on as well. It continues through August 27th. Newest patterns are 10% off while others are 25% off or more. Enjoy a stitchy summer bargain.

Till we meet again sweet friends ... be cosy and stitch!
Tanya Marie Willis Anderson, THE SAMPLER GIRL

18 July 2012

Remembering Jane Austen.

Today marks the passing of Jane Austen in 1817. For a post about this, please visit the main blog HERE!

06 July 2012

Some Recent Finishes to Share

Hi All

Hope everyone is keeping well.   I have a couple of finishes to share with you.  You will all recognise these I am sure.  Wonderful free charts from Tanya.

The first one is stitched on 32 count fabric with my favourite blue shade of DMC thread.

and the second one was stitched using the offcut of fabric from the above design.  I have hung this on the inside of my porch door so my Lord Downton can see this when he comes home from work.
Tanya - thanks again for these wonderful charts you keep on producing for us.

Love Michelle x

28 May 2012

my Jane Austen purse ... +

Pop over the my other blog! ~ I've posted some ocean pics and a funny Jane Austen comment from the weekend about my recently stitched Jane Austen purse ... Click HERE for that post!!

17 May 2012

Jane Austen GIVEAWAY

Popping in to tell you there's a Jane Austen GIVEAWAY on my other blog sooooo go HERE and enter to win ON TRAVEL WITH JANE AUSTEN SAMPLER. Winner will be picked at random Sunday, May 20th. 

Good luck!

15 April 2012

a sweet view

Hi ladies, and thank you Tanya for the invite to join this community. I just could not believe it when I first discovered this blog and all the lovely charts with a Jane Austen theme... 

A sweet view, stitched on hand dyed 28ct linen

Thought I would share with you my favourite finish so far, I love this little cushion and have now started a second one! Will post a photo of the WIP as soon as it is recognizable!!
Thank you for these lovely designs
Happy stitching 

13 April 2012

Fancy a

Jane and Darcy Day?

I thought I had posted these two finishes here before, but clearly my mind is going.

I finished these sometime in the autumn 2011 using variegated Anchor cotton on 32-count Charles Craft raw/natural linen.

For Jane I used Anchor variegated 1318

And for Darcy I used Anchor variegated 1342

I've got a few others that aren't finished yet so I'll show you all those when they are done.