Monday, December 30, 2013

Rococo Reading: A New 18th Century Hair Manual

During time off for the holidays (and recovery from the flu) I stumbled upon what could be a very useful find during my online wandering.
Hairstyles are one of the more difficult aspects of 18th century costuming, and getting your look perfected can often seem more stressful than sewing the actual wardrobe.
Kendra Van Cleave of, comes to our rescue.
She has created a book detailing 18th century hairstyles and techniques, and is slated to be released this spring. Price; $45 ($5 discount if you pre-order the book) according to the Facebook page.
Pre-orders begin Jan 1st, 2014!

Overall, this looks like something I will most definitely be purchasing as soon as pre-orders start. While I've had some experience with wigs and creating historic hairstyles with my own hair, the 18th century is something I have rarely delved into, and really wouldn't mind having a go-to guide for. I've done the more simple mid-1700s look; the chignon with a pinner cap or a well-propped-up plume. But I yearn for the somewhat taller and fuller styles between the 1770s and 1780s.

Be sure to visit and 'like' the Facebook page for updates and more info:

Here is a small sampling from the table of contents (draft), and some techniques that will be covered;

"...Working with human hair: 
  • Curling
  • Straightening
Working with synthetic hair & wigs:
  • Purchasing
  • Different kinds of wigs & hairpieces
  • Making hairpieces (ponytails, ringlets, buns, braids, etc.)
  • Adding extra hair
  • Changing the hairline
  • Enlarging a wig
  • How to make it all look smooth
  • Masking an obvious wig line
  • Wig care, storage, & travel
Section 3:  Finished Styles
  • Women:  22 styles spanning 1700-1799
  • Men:  3 styles spanning 1740-1799
Both with step by step instructions illustrated with color photos, and lots of ideas for variations."


  1. Thanks for helping me get the word out!

    1. My pleasure.
      Thank *you* for putting together such a great book!


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