However, this pair of crewelwork panels, embroidered with a typical display of flora and fauna, were made in the 1940s by aristocratic sisters Mabel and Sybil Eden. The smaller of the two at 5ft 11in x 7ft 7in (1.8 x 2.3m) is signed Sybil Eden 1949, the other at 4ft 3in x 8ft 10in (1.3 x 2.7m) is signed by Mabel Winona Eden and dated 1940.
‘Aunty Mabel’ kept a diary throughout her life, describing eight decades of almost endless travel, luncheons, theatre and church fetes against a backdrop of seismic world events from the end of the Boer War to the onset of the Second World War.
Her 76 volumes were edited and published in 2014 as Mabel Eden’s Diary: The Life of a Lady, 1878-1949. A sewing project such as this was an acceptable pastime for unmarried ladies of the leisured classes.
Offered by Tennants (20% buyer’s premium) in Leyburn as part of a sale of Costume Accessories and Textiles Sale on February 13, they were much admired and sold for £3200, more than 10 times the top estimate.