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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3RD7G

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The fruits of nimble finger: garment construction and the working lives of eighteenth-century English needlewomen Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
sewing
work
pre-industrial
needlewomen
garment
construction
trades
mantuamaker
eighteenth-century
women
consumption
gender
history
England
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Dowdell, Carolyn
Supervisor and department
Beverly Lemire, History & Classics, Human Ecology
Examining committee member and department
Arlene Oak, Human Ecology
Jeremy Caradonna, History & Classics
Department
Department of Human Ecology
Specialization

Date accepted
2010-08-31T13:51:11Z
Graduation date
2010-11
Degree
Master of Arts
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
The research objective of this thesis is to re-examine women‟s labour in the eighteenth-century English sewing trades. Several aspects women‟s working lives in the sewing trades are explored in three sections. The first section examines diversity within the sewing trades, employment opportunities, working conditions and quality of life. The second focuses on garment construction practices and techniques. The third discusses social standings of needlewomen, and consumer economy issues as they pertained to the needletrades. Methods employed include building upon prior scholarship of women‟s work and aspects of pre-industrial English garment trades, primary source material, and object-based research using garment artefacts from the Museum of London, England, Berrington Hall, and the Royal Ontario Museum. The research findings indicate that pre-industrial English needlewomen‟s working lives were highly nuanced, their skills more sophisticated than generally believed, and their role within the burgeoning consumer society worthy of further in-depth investigation.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3RD7G
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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File title: The Fruits of Nimble Fingers:
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