Redwork embroidery is believed to have originated in Europe in the early 1800’s and traveled to America around 1850 with the availability of color fast red floss. The availability of color fast red thread and inexpensive cotton fabric led to an abundance of interest in this type of embroidery. From the 1860’s through the 1920’s it became popular for young girls to be taught to embroider using red thread floss on cotton squares using simple patterns. These "penny squares"—the simple cotton and floss could be purchased for a penny in dry goods stores across the country—were quickly stitched and often put together block by block into lightweight bed covers.
I decided to complete a piece of redwork as part of my gift making this year - and here is my first completed project. It has been placed in a timber frame and some trim added. The little girl to whom will be receiving this has been learning her Proverbs 31 so I thought it would be nice to add the verse "wortheth willingly with her hands". My next 2 projects will be for a friend's birthday in April and for Mothers Day in May.