In South Africa, the Basotho women use house painting as a way to express their views and prayers. These African women took it upon themselves to speak their minds using bright paint and artistic designs on their dwellings, as a voice to show their defiance against apartheid and their passion for their families. In Lafayette, the women of Women Who Paint also use design and color in ways that warm their hearts and spark their passion.
Kristol Jaskul, founder and owner of Women Who Paint, is an artist herself. After years in retail and management, she found her passion for interior painting. She said, “It’s a career that I actually love going to work every morning!” While having experience with exterior painting, she wanted her company to specialize in interior painting, including faux and murals. Kristol believes her business name, Women Who Paint, says it all. “Most of the time, it is the woman of the house that plans the decorating and selects the paint in the home. They prefer women painters, because we have the attention to detail and the eye for color and design. We are also complimented for being neat and clean!” Julie Maynard is an artist who has worked with Kristol for one year, painting walls and murals. Julie believes women love to hire Women Who Paint because it is evident that the women love to work with people, and they can read a person’s comfort level when it comes to decorating and paint selections. Julie has loved color since a child—she remembers her first chalkboard with colored chalk. Her portfolio pictures look like actual photos, and her murals are works of art. Her latest, clouds painted on a ceiling, made her client’s child ask how she made them look 3-D!
While interviewing Kristol and Julie, Erin Norris, the third woman of Women Who Paint, walked into the room. I commented that they all had paint on their shirts and shorts. Julie chimed in, “It’s a rule.”
Erin agreed, “I love paint and I love color.” She also remembers being surrounded by color as a child, but was older before she realized she could make a living with her vocation. She started her own design company, An Inside Job, several years ago, which includes decorating, color, and space.
All three women commented on the meditative nature of painting walls. “We get into the work,” Kristol said, “And it just inspires us more as we see the progress.”
The women do this difficult work because they truly love it. They are always excited to start a new job and get to know the homeowners.“This is their home and it is very personal,” Erin said. “We become part of their lives and will honor them by enjoying the work and getting it done quickly.”
All three women are inspiring. They are fulfilling their dreams by pursuing what makes them happy. They agree that what sets them apart is their ability to really get to know the client, sense what they want, and then develop that look for them. Kristol said, “If you really want white, we will paint it white for you. But we might suggest an off white or light neutral.”
Another specialty of Women Who Paint is helping Realtors update homes to sell. After a recent job, the person who lived there was amazed by how the walls looked, and even more amazed by how the room was put back together for him. “These are true professionals,” he said, and he will hire them to paint his new house.
Being competitively priced helps. Although Kristol is the owner of Women Who Paint, she is always involved with each job. “I love to paint and spend as much time as possible at each job site. I personally see the job through, from the bid to completion.”
Three women, coming from different backgrounds, with a love for a job historically done by men. Julie stated it simply, “If you love it, it is right.”