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The embroidery was designed by John Henry Dearle and purchased as a kit from Morris & Co by Lady Helen Lucas Tooth. Lady Helen completed the embroidery for the drawing room of her daughter's house at Somerfield Keynes near Cirencester.

The design features a large cherry tree with two birds, a clematis growing around the tree trunk and a variety of wildflowers including foxgloves, lilies and anemones. The embroidery has been worked in coloured silks on a cream silk background with long and short stitch, stem stitch, satin stitch, French knots and laid work.

John Henry Dearle joined Morris's employment in 1878 as an assistant in the Oxford Street showroom of Morris & Co., before being transferred to the glass painters' studio and becoming an apprentice tapestry weaver. He eventually went on to become Art Director of Morris & Co. upon Morris’s death in 1896. After many years of training alongside Morris, Dearle began creating distinctive patterns in his own right.

Details

  • Title: 'The Cherry Tree' embroidered panel
  • Creator: John Henry Dearle, Helen Lucas Tooth, Morris & Co.
  • Date Created: c.1919-1923
  • Type: embroidery
  • Rights: © William Morris Gallery, London Borough of Waltham Forest
  • Physical Dimensions: 185.5 x 94 cm
  • Object Number: F119
  • Medium: embroidered silk
  • Credit line: Presented by Lady Durand, daughter of Lady Lucas-Tooth, 1952

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