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Calton women

Burrell Collection Photo Library

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Calton women

A group of women from the Calton, early 20th century. The woman second from the left has bare feet.

These women are wrapped up warm in their shawls. Woollen shawls had been common outerwear for women in rural areas of Scotland for generations. They became fashionable among working-class Glasgow women during the mid-late 19th century, as mills in the city and in towns such as Paisley mass-produced these simple, often colourful garments for sale at relatively low prices. Much like the woollen plaid, which had been the standard dress of men in the Highlands and which was the forerunner of the modern kilt, the woollen shawl could be worn loose or drawn close to the body to keep out the cold and give some protection from rain. In an era when prams were a luxury, shawls could also be adapted to carry small babies - wrapped in the folds and tucked under the arm!

Reference: 140.90.238

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums

bare feet, fashions, shawls, women, wool

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