from Simple Stitch Patterns for Embroidery, to the second of my collection of Anne Brandon Jones’ books, Stitch Pattern and Design for Embroidery. It’s in this book that she first outlines her use of gauges to mark the cloth. I haven’t been using them, because I’m working on evenweave fabric, but I shall try them out when I move onto non-evenweave.
Brandon Jones uses a wider range of stitches in this book, which makes it more interesting – I was getting a bit bored with just variations of chain and fly stitch.
When I got my first Brandon Jones book I fossicked around on the internet, in search of more – which is why I now have three. I also found out a bit more about her, chiefly from a Wikipedia article about her son, John, who was an architect. (It turns out he designed this, which I drive past several times a week.)
I’ve tried to find out a bit more about Anne, using the internet and Find My Past, and drawn up a provisional timeline of her life. Some of these bits I’m sure about, others are based on adding 2 + 2 and getting 4.5. If you know better, please let me know!
Annie (not Anne) Brandon was born on the 25th August 1878 in Hendon in Middlesex. I think she was one of the seven children of William Brandon, a police constable, and his wife, Martha. There were at least two other Annie Brandons living in Hendon at the end of the 19th century, but this Annie seems the most likely candidate. In 1901 this Annie, aged 22, was living with her parents and working in a book shop.
At some time, it is unclear when, she attended the Central School of Art and Crafts, now part of Central St Martins.
In 1907 she married Philip Jones, who had been born in Leicester in 1876. To 21st century eyes, the merging of their names seems like a feminist gesture, but I don’t think we can make this assumption – perhaps they just liked the name Brandon Jones!
In 1911 they were living in Hendon, and had a son, John, born in 1908. Wikipedia suggests that the family were involved with the Arts and Crafts Movement, a strong influence on John’s architecture.
Annie and Philip had three more children: Noel (1911) and Mary (1914), both born in Hendon, and Una (1916) born in St Albans.
In the 20s the family moved to Berkhamsted, where Philip taught at Berkhamsted School. It was in this period that Simple Stitch Patterns for Embroidery (1926), Stitch Patterns and Design for Embroidery (1929) and Colour Pattern For Embroidery (1932) were published. Annie also seems to have been writing for Good Housekeeping magazine.
By 1939 Annie and Philip, now in their 60s, had moved with Una to a flat in St Pancras. In the 1939 Register, compiled just before the start of WW2, Annie describes her occupation as a landscape and flower painter.
Philip died in 1944. In 1947, Annie sailed to Australia, where her daughter Mary had gone in 1939. Annie returned the following year, and died in 1968 in Richmond on Thames.