A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.
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Sub-order 1.—Furriers, Skinners, Tanners and Leather Dressers

335.—Enamellers, Japanners, Dyers, Stainers, and Finishers

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see flamer and seasoner.
brusher (fur dressing)
brushes, by hand, tangled fur after pelt has been leathered.
brusher, glove
applies dye to skin intended for use in glove making, with hand brush.
brusher (tanning, etc.) ; brush polisher, leather polisher, polisher
passes tanned leather under revolving brush, to clean and polish it.
colour mixer
weighs out various dyes, in powder or crystallised form, by hand, on small scales; adds water, usually working according to formula; when matching a particular colour, tries various combinations until desired result is obtained.
dye boiler
attends dye pans, in which certain dyes are boiled up with water in readiness for dyeing.
dyer, skin dyer, skin rug dyer, vat dyer
weighs out dyes according to formula; knows properties of various dyes and their actions on different skins; gives instructions to labourers as to amount of water to be added and filling of vats or drum tumblers; either immerses skins in vats or applies dyes with brush; or gives directions to labourers as to immersing skins in vats and their removal therefrom or as to filling drum tumblers with skins and length of time tumblers should be in motion, or as to applying dye to fur skins by hand with brushes; sometimes specifically designated, e.g. skin dyer, glove dyer, hat leather dyer, vat dyer.
dyer, blue vat
immerses skins in vat containing blue-black dye, to produce black leather.
embosser ; printer
(i) chooses roller of type required for particular class of grain or design and fits it into power-driven roller press; switches on or off power; passes leather, by hand, between revolving roller and bed of machine;
(ii) in same way operates a plate embossing machine.
enameller, leather enameller ; japanner, leather jap aimer, leather stover
gives a hard coloured surface to leather by coating it with varnish or collodion spread thickly by hand, brush or slicker, i.e., a small hand tool; dries leather in heated chamber.
(i) applies, by hand with a brush, a solution to small skins to fix dye;
(ii) pours fixing solution into drum; loads drum with skins; switches on or off power which causes drum to revolve; unloads drum when fixing operation is complete.
finisher, leather finisher
general terms for workers engaged in any finishing process in leather manufacture, e.g., embosser, ironer (q.v.).
finisher, levant
see levant dresser.
flamer and seasoner ; blacker
applies glutinous or albuminous mixture to boot leather, etc., by hand with brush, to impart a glaze or finish.
gilder, leather gilder
(i) applies albumen composition to leather with brush; lays gold leaf on surface so prepared with knife or pad; heats metal tool in gas flame and presses it on gold leaf; wipes off surplus gold with a pad;
(ii) applies gold size to leather with a brush; paints surface so prepared with gilding composition.
dyes or colours short fur nearest to skin, by "stubbing " it with a special brush dipped in dye.
hat leather solutioner
spreads solution on skin intended for hat leather with a brush; polishes skin by hand with brush or pad, to give a finish or gloss.
(i) irons light leathers by hand or machine, to give finish;
(ii) passes leather into hand or machine press fitted with heated plates; manipulates hand levers to regulate pressure.
japanner, leather japanner
see enameller.
applies dope or pigment, by hand, to surface of leather, the quantity depending on condition of leather; passes it beneath oscillating bar or brush of jigger machine, which gives leather a glazed surface.
leather stover
see enameller.
levant dresser, levanter ; levant finisher
(i) works up natural grain of goat skin by hand, after it has been dyed, using a board called a "cork," which he rubs on back of skin;
(ii) produces an imitation goat grain on skins by passing through a machine fitted with pattern rollers; cf. printing machine feeder (335) and grainer (334).
a smearer (334) (q.v.) who applies oil to leather, by pad or with a brush; cf. millman (334).
applies a surface dye to fancy leathers by passing leather between squeezing rollers of padding machine; fills bath with dye; adjusts rollers; controls power-drive of machine by levers.
polisher, brush polisher, leather polisher
see brusher (tanning, etc.).
see embosser.
printing machine feeder
passes skins under roller of rotary machine or places them under plate of plate machine, to give imitation grain to surface; cf. levant dresser (335) and grainer (334).
Spanish leather dresser, Spanish leather roller
(i) supervises various workers, e.g., finishers (332), rollers (338), printers, dyers or stainers (q.v.) engaged in producing Spanish leather, i.e., leather with special antique finish;
(ii) general terms for worker engaged in any operation, e.g., rolling, printing, dyeing or staining, incidental to production of Spanish leather.
sprayer, pistol
sprays leather with dye, using aerographing machine, to obtain soft, even effect of colouring; regulates pressure of air which expels dye from sprayer.
prepares and mixes dye or stain according to formula; applies it to surface of leather by hand, with brush or pad; cf. dyer; sometimes specifically designated, e.g., glove stainer.
table hand, table man
stretches skins after dyeing on table; works in a top colour to make colour uniform on skins blotchy owing to uneven dyeing; cf. currier's table hand (334).
tipper, topper
applies dye or stain to upper layer of cheap furs with brush to give it the appearance of rarer kinds; imitates natural markings of the latter by varying stain.

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From: A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921,
Ministry of Labour, 1927. Digitised by Peter Christian, August, 2016.   This text is in the Public Domain.