Instructions on Needle-Work and Knitting

Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting title page, black text on cream colored paper

Title page of Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting

London, 1847

Instructions on Needle-Work and Knitting

London, National Society for Promoting the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church, 1847

7" x 15"

Victoria and Albert Museum

This book, embellished with what appears to be an assortment of doll's clothing, might easily be mistaken for a luxury gift item for girls. In fact, it was published for use by girls enrolled in a charity school founded in Westminster, London, in 1812, for the purpose of conferring "upon the Children of the Poor the Inestimable Benefit of Religious Instruction"—and to send its charges into the world armed with a useful trade. By 1851, England and Wales had a combined total of 17,000 such so-called national schools serving an estimated 955,000 students.


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Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting interior page, black text on left side, and a knitted sock on the right

Interior page of Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting

London, 1847

Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting interior page, knit sock on left side and pink dress on right side

Interior page of Instructions for Needle-Work and Knitting

London, 1847


Photos accessed from "Victoria and Albert Museum." V&A Digital Collections. Accessed on August 6, 2018. http://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O108337/the-national-societys-instructions-on-instruction-book-unknown/ 

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Instructions on Needle-Work and Knitting