Sampler diary, Cyprus

Sampler Khirokitia / Cyprus, Mique Menheere ©

Archeological “drawings”

You may know I have a love for making embroidered samplers. I also have a love for archaeological architecture. In my holidays I visit those sites when I can. So I will later this year, when I go to Cyprus. I intend to visit the (Pre Ceramic) Neolithic village Khirokitia, which was founded around 7000 years before Christ, can you imagine?

Recently I read a book about it, in which my eyes fell on a beautiful ground plan of the site.

book Khirokitia a Neolithic Site, copyright Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation, Alain le Brun, page 44, (Ground) Plan of zone A

I loved the drawing in itself, especially all the circular forms struck me. To me they have a quite modern look and feel, now, 9000 years later! I immediately decided to embroider it. And the result…. you saw that at the beginning of this post.

To get some feeling how this village looks like … take a look at the photo below, where you see the site from an aerial point of view.

Khirokitia seen from the air, back cover book Khirokitia a Neolithic site, copyright Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation, Alain le Brun

And this is how the village houses probably must have looked like 9000 years ago:

drawing from book Khirokitia a Neolithic site, copyright Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation, Alain le Brun, p. 26

Making process

As I said I decided to embroider the plan. I drew it on soluvlies and then stitched it on fabric, after that I embroidered it with DMC yarn 1 thread. I used a firm, cotton fabric. When I was finished, I put it all in water to delete the soluvlies. The flexibility of the threads changed a little bit, they became a bit stiff.

Ground plan drew on soluvlies, applied to fabric, Mique Menheere ©

Initially I also embroidered the grid the archaeologists used at the time for excavation, so many horizontal and vertical lines appeared. Later I decided to do things differently and removed them.

Embroidered plan including grid, Mique Menheere ©

Wanna know more?

Lots of information can be found in this book (1997).

copyright Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation

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