And Miss Carter Wore Pink by Helen Bradley

And Miss Carter Wore Pink cover

Have you heard of the artist Helen Bradley? She didn’t start painting until she was over 60. She wanted to show her granddaughter the memories that she had of her Edwardian childhood and the upshot was her book And Miss Carter Wore Pink. It was published in 1971 and I just bought a copy of it from a charity shop a few days ago. When I worked in libraries I was always having to rescue it from the nursery book boxes as people often thought that it was a book for kids and ‘helpfully’ relocated it.

In the book Helen Bradley tells the story of her childhood and the people who played a prominent part in it. It’s a really charming book although no doubt Helen Bradley was only painting her happy memories viewed through rose tinted specs. But maybe she did have an idyllic childhood. She said ‘The Edwardian period was lovely, gay and exciting, and I loved painting it, even the weather was kinder.’

Her style is primitive and deceptively simple looking. Her work has been compared with Grandma Moses and L.S. Lowry admired her work. In her 1970 art exhibition all of her paintings were sold before opening day.

You can see more images of her work here.

4 thoughts on “And Miss Carter Wore Pink by Helen Bradley

    • Susan D,
      Amazingly I bought another of her books at a sale in Peebles today. The Queen Who Came to Tea. I hadn’t seen any for years.

  1. Katrina,
    As a devoted fan of “Grandma Moses” and her paintings (she lived and painted only about 65-75 miles from here, directly to the southeast), I am delighted to discover Helen Bradley! Just spent some time browsing her work. Her paintings are lovely and are(were) a reminder for her, I imagine, and for others, of an era before the terrible calamities of the 20th century.
    I’m going to see if any libraries in our vast library system have a volume of her paintings. If not, I’ll just have to feast my eyes online. Thank you!!

    • Judith,
      I’ll be very surprised if they do have any of her books in your libraries, but you might find some for sale online really cheap.

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