My favorite museum exhibit at the Smithsonian is the Star-Spangled Banner -- the absolutely humungous flag that flew over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 and inspired Francis Scott Key to write our national anthem. When visiting the exhibit, you approach the flag via a hallway, turn the corner into a darkened room, and there she is in all her glory. The size of it is heart-stopping, and knowing it was completely hand-sewn by Mary Pickersgill, her daughter, two nieces, and two servants in just five weeks is breathtaking. Each stripe is two feet wide! Mary used more than 400 yards of wool and cotton to create the flag. It is battered and bruised but it is still quite remarkable and great effort has gone into its conservation.
As an homage to Mary and her assistants, and to George Armistead,the commander of Fort McHenry who ordered a flag "so large that the British would have no difficulty seeing it from a distance," I have designed a new pattern called "Long May It Wave." It is hand-drawn on premium Dorr Linen and will measure a mere 8 inches by 28 inches when completed and YOU can win it and hook it yourself! Leave a patriotic comment below and in the evening on Memorial Day, I will randomly draw the name of the winner.
Good Luck and enjoy the holiday weekend!