A3 Book chapter
‘‘‘Sister to the tailor’: Guilds, gender and the needle trades in eighteenth-century Europe’

List of Authors: Deborah Simonton
Place: New York
Publication year: 2017
Book title *: Early Professional Women in Northern Europe, c. 1650 to the 1850s
ISBN: 978-1-4724-7134-5


Milliners, and their sisters, mantuamakers, modistes and marchandes de mode, were skilled artisans, businesswomen and
tradeswomen. During the eighteenth century, they commandeered the high-class
sewing that set fashion and created stars of their most famous, like Rose
Bertrand, milliner to Marie Antoinette. They populated the growing towns of
Europe and used their design and business acumen to create a virtual profession
out of a handicraft. They also encountered resistance from guilds and guildsmen
who tried to retain their control over commercial sewing, and certainly the
bespoke and honourable end of the needle trades. They also confronted slander
from authors and commentators who saw them acting on the fringes of female
respectability. This chapter will explore this group of commercial
‘professionals’ as they carved out a niche in the world of sewing and
dressmaking before the advent of confection in the next century.

Internal Authors/Editors

Last updated on 2019-29-01 at 09:57