Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820

Nina Baker

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

In the early 21st century it is still considered unusual to find a woman in paid employment as a skilled housepainter and decorator. Tradeswomen, in these most domestic of building trades, were working throughout Scotland during the 19th and 20th centuries. The women were those whose work self-identities were sufficiently strong to be recorded in directories and census returns. These are women who worked, not middle class or amateur women interior decorators dabbling in the arts and crafts because it was fashionable. The historical record is compared with contemporary records of women taking paid employment in these fields and also with the strong market created in modern times by the many TV DIY programmes encouraging women into DIY. The high level of present and past involvement of women in house-painting and decorating shows that the aptitude and ability exists at both the professional and amateur levels. The factual reality is compared with perception and prejudice within the industry and the barriers that were and are placed in front of women wishing to do this work.
LanguageEnglish
Pages1-18
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 2005
EventWHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005 - Southampton Solent University
Duration: 1 Jan 1900 → …

Conference

ConferenceWHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005
CitySouthampton Solent University
Period1/01/00 → …

Fingerprint

Decorator
Amateur
Census
Art
Modern Times
Interior Decorator
Middle Class
Prejudice
Industry
Self-identity
21st Century
Historical Records
Scotland
Directory

Keywords

  • women's history
  • construction history
  • housepainters

Cite this

Baker, N. (2005). Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820. 1-18. Paper presented at WHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005, Southampton Solent University, .
Baker, Nina. / Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820. Paper presented at WHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005, Southampton Solent University, .17 p.
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Baker, N 2005, 'Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820' Paper presented at WHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005, Southampton Solent University, 1/01/00, pp. 1-18.

Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820. / Baker, Nina.

2005. 1-18 Paper presented at WHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005, Southampton Solent University, .

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

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AB - In the early 21st century it is still considered unusual to find a woman in paid employment as a skilled housepainter and decorator. Tradeswomen, in these most domestic of building trades, were working throughout Scotland during the 19th and 20th centuries. The women were those whose work self-identities were sufficiently strong to be recorded in directories and census returns. These are women who worked, not middle class or amateur women interior decorators dabbling in the arts and crafts because it was fashionable. The historical record is compared with contemporary records of women taking paid employment in these fields and also with the strong market created in modern times by the many TV DIY programmes encouraging women into DIY. The high level of present and past involvement of women in house-painting and decorating shows that the aptitude and ability exists at both the professional and amateur levels. The factual reality is compared with perception and prejudice within the industry and the barriers that were and are placed in front of women wishing to do this work.

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Baker N. Who paints the house? Scotswomen as housepainters and decorators from 1820. 2005. Paper presented at WHN conference: Women, Art & Culture, 2005, Southampton Solent University, .