Saturday, April 27, 2019

1830s Day and Evening Hair

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For my friend Robin's Young Victoria Dinner, I knew I needed to give as much attention to my hair as my dress--the 1830s had some of the most distinctive hair in history. Hair is not my strong point as a costumer, but the architectural qualities of 1830s hair gave me some reassurance that I could do it. It looked extremely strange as it was coming together, but when all the pieces are in place--the side curls, bun, and sleeve, it's remarkably balanced.

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For the side curls, I used these side swept clip in bangs from Amazon and curled them. I set them with sponge rollers and boiled them for a few seconds to set them. I got the idea from Christina of The Laced Angel who does amazing 1830s hair. I ended up curling three sets of bangs since I rushed through setting my second set. Don't do that. And apologies for the vertical and horizontal pictures. I try to be good and keep them consistent...

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The back braid is very simple. It's just a long piece of braiding hair braided and pinned with small bobby pins into a bun. I left the top open--initially because it gave me the shape I wanted, but then I realized I could use it that way to anchor the evening part of the hairpiece. I sewed an invisible hairnet around the bun to secure it.

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I was going to do loops and braids of hair, and even started to arrange a loop on a piece of folded poster board, but I the event was less than a week away, and I looked at the loose hair I had and felt a little defeated. I had pinned this portrait though, with a woman with ribbon coming out of her bun. That I could do easily! I used strips of fabric from my dress with the ends folded in to form ribbon loops. I sewed pieces of a glittery branch I found a Pier 1 in between them. Then I wrapped a braid around the base and sewed it into place, then added a few small bobby pins. Once again, I sewed an invisible hairnet over it.


The evening hairpiece pins into the day hairpiece with a few U shaped hairpins.


To wear the hairpieces, I started with a center part that I split into a Y shaped part a few inches back. I put my hair in a small bun, and pinned the day hairpiece to it, using U shaped pins--they work well, and that way I wouldn't take the bobby pins holding the bun itself together out when I took the hairpiece off. I smoothed down my hair with Got2B Glued hair gel. My hair is extremely fussy and doesn't like to stay in place, and minutes after putting the bun in, it was creeping up. I then put small side buns in to clip the side curls to. My side curls already had wig/toupee clips in them, so I didn't need any more pins. Full disclosure, these aren't the buns I ended up with. I redid them with braided buns, which laid flatter and were easier to hide some of my hairline with. I just forgot to take a picture. I twisted the back of my hair into a French twist, and secured it with pins and more gel.

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The hair from the back--a little messy, but since it's technically not long enough for the style, I'm quite pleased with it!


And my hair stayed all day--something it rarely does, even with hairpieces. I was definitely pleased with that!


  1. Love it! Your hair and outfits were amazing!

  2. your hair was both glorious and ingenious!

  3. Your hair looks amazing! I'm always inspired by your fake hairpieces.

  4. It looks really great. I love this hairstyle in both versions. And the dresses of course!

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