Shades of Colour Homemaker Interview

In celebration of International Women’s Day earlier this month, we want to recognise those women making their careers in an industry which is dominated by males. We have been speaking to Rebecca Bristow who owns painting and decorating business Shades of Colour Somerset, to find out about her experiences as a tradesperson.


The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) have recently conducted research into opinions on female builders and tradespeople and found that almost one third of homeowners would feel more positive about hiring a female tradesperson, as opposed to a male.





Tip 1 IconHave you ever experienced either a positive or negative reaction from being a woman in the building and construction industry?


A) I have always had really positive working experiences with all my customers, there has never been anything negative.


Tip 2 Icon People surveyed felt that female tradespeople might be more trustworthy and more respectful of their home. Do you think that your customers may come to you, rather than male painter and decorators for these reasons?


A) Yes, my customers seem to be comfortable with having a female in their home. They don't worry about changing their minds on colours and feel they can discuss ideas without feeling pressured.


Tip 3 Icon The FMB concluded that there is a clear appetite among consumers for more women in trade; have you witnessed a greater volume of women in the industry recently?


A) Nope, I haven’t noticed more women in the trade recently, there is only one other female in this industry in my local area.


Tip 4 Icon How did you get into the painting and decorating industry and get to the point of starting your own business?


A) My husband’s ex-wife died, I had to be a stay at home step mum for a few years to look after 7 children. At the time I needed to find a job that I could fit in around the children as I had no one I could ask to have seven children for six weeks of the summer holidays! At the time I was classed as a stay at home mum and the government were offering grants for retraining. I found a local training company and for two years trained in plastering, carpentry, brick laying and a bit of decorating. I left with qualifications and decided to set up as a self-employed painter and decorator which fits in around all the children and I have never looked back!


Tip 5 Icon Do you have a decorating job that you’ve completed which sticks out as a favourite for you?


A) I loved taking part in DIY SOS recently, it was an amazing experience for a good cause.


Tip 6 Icon What advice would you give to people who are thinking about choosing a painter and decorator for their home? What are the important questions to ask?


A) You must choose someone who you feel comfortable with, you can also check them out on social media to see what they are like and what other people have said about them.


Shades of Colour Kitchen

Tip 7 Icon Why should homeowners choose a professional painter and decorator over DIY decorating?


A) People have such busy lives, so it is a lovely thing to come home to a decorated house or room which is clean and tidy. If you hire a professional, it also means you end up with a quality finish and you don’t have the worry of cleaning all of the brushes and rollers!


A massive thank you to Rebecca for taking the time to talk to us, if you are local to Somerset and need a painter and decorator, Shades of Colour Somerset contact details can be found below. Let’s continue celebrating women tradespeople!


Rebecca Bristow, Shades of Colour Somerset; Tel: 07747 030647