Hi! I’m Rebecca Ringquist, the founder and designer behind Dropcloth Samplers.
This is the story about how, by accident, I started a business in the woods of New Hampshire one summer...
In the summer of 2010, I was living in Chicago, running a textile department at a small community art center. Amongst other things, I taught embroidery and screen-printing. One of my favorite things about the job was watching the drop-cloths in the screen printing studio develop over the years as more and more images got accidentally added, and more unpredictable smears of textile ink got splattered.
That same summer, I got invited to teach at Squam Art Workshops in New Hampshire, where I found out I would have a table at the craft sale. After hemming and hawing about what to bring, I decided to print an embroidery sampler design. I had long been interested in the history of embroidery, and specifically colonial American samplers, and I thought having a printed design might inspire more people to take up embroidery.
Well, it was a lucky summer that year, as hoards of Squam craft fair shoppers bought that first design, and then blogged about it, forcing my hand to open a shop while I was on vacation in Michigan. I watched in awe as order after order came in on my i-phone and we shipped them out at the local small town post-office, using business envelopes and scotch tape. After my love of screen-printed accidents, I named this shop Dropcloth. Each design comes with no directions, in the hopes that you will find your own happenstance color relationships growing as you make it up as you go.
Fast forward a few years, and I've lived in Brooklyn, NY, and now Portland, OR. I've designed lots and lots of samplers since that first summer, but the best selling Original Sampler is still the fan favorite.
Want to learn more about me and Dropcloth Samplers? I’ve been interviewed on a few podcasts—have a listen! They’re listed on our press page, link below.
In addition to running Dropcloth Samplers, I’m also a mom, a lackluster gardener, an enthusiastic home cook, a big mess maker, a messy home haver, a hiker, a cold weather enthusiast, a pragmatist, an optimist, and a kind human. Learn more about me over on Instagram, where in addition to blabbering on about Dropcloth Samplers, I sometimes post things about the rest of my life in Portland, Oregon and beyond.
Take a class with Rebecca
Rebecca Ringquist is a Portland-based visual artist and designer. Her stitched drawings on fabric explore issues of identity through thinly veiled metaphors utilizing old fashioned imagery and double entendres. She learned how to embroider in college in a feminist art history class, and has been inspired by the history of American needlework ever since. Approaching the technique of embroidery as a way of drawing, Ringquist has taught hundreds of people new ways of making marks on fabric through classes and workshops around the country.