"Glendora"They’ve given Aunt Jemima
a new headrag
synthetic fiber curls
to replace bright calico…
Like the hopeful young women of “Dreamgirls,” the women in my mother’s family swore by their wigs. Usually the wigs covered their short plaits, but every now and then someone’s wig would slip and one of those little pig tails would peek out – to the wig wearer’s everlasting embarrassment.
This was my mother’s “go to” wig. She called it “Glendora.” I borrowed it for a photo shoot when I was in college:
The women in m mother’s family knew how to make cornrows, but they considered such styles “countrified” so it was the young men of my era who reclaimed braided hairstyles as a fashion statement. At first they would go to our cousin, Mary Jane, to get their hair plaited so their Afro’s would blow out to more impressive dimensions when they got ready to go to a dance. Later, under the influence of Stevie Wonder, they fell into the habit of wearing braids as a regular hairstyle instead of just as part of the upkeep on their ‘fros.
Braided hairstyles were one manifestation of the highly developed traditions of sculptural arts in African societies. Cicely Tyson was one of the first African American women to adopt braids as a fashion statement when she appeared on the CBS drama series, East Side, West Side with her hair in cornrows in 1962. In the doll world, Bryon Lars created extravagant sculptural braids for Moja, Tano, and Tatu from his Treasures of Africa collection while doll couturière Em’lia has crowned her “Comet Moth,” the 4th doll in her Insectopia collection, with braided horns.
My braided wig designs are much simpler, but here is a selection of the styles I have developed for 1:6 scale dolls and action figures:
|Updo braids -- Expresso|
|Mircro-braids -- Black|
|Center part braids -- Auburn|
|Center part braids -- Chocolate|
|Center bead braids -- Brick|
Please let me know what styles and colors are your favorites and what you would be willing to pay for handcrafted items that take up to six hours a piece to produce.