Historical Hair: The Ada Clare Pull-Back Tutorial

Per the votes so far on the polls, I have figured out and taken step by step pictures of two historical hairstyles: The Ada Clare Pull-Back, and The Belle Gardiner Coiffure. Please realize that these are the versions I came up with- I am not saying they are identical to the styles worn by the characters in the movies, but they are as similar as I could get them to be with the limited views I had of the styles. (Try getting a scene in Bleak House light enough to see the back of Ada's hair! :D)
So without further ado, I present the first of, I hope, many tutorials: The Ada Clare Pull-Back! :)

Step One: Set hair in Bandanna Waves- inspiration courtesy of Rapunzel's Resource
These waves give hair the perfect volume and texture for many of the early to mid-eighteen-hundreds styles. I started by spraying Sarah' hair with water and combing it out.
Then I rolled up three bandannas, lengthwise. Not tip to tip.
I separated her hair into thirds, and then twisted the sections around the bandannas that I had folded in half (once more, lengthwise) in a figure-eight fashion, securing the ends with hair bands.
She slept in these overnight, much to Gracie's delight, who told her she "looks like a mooser" (moose) You can actually see Gracie cracking up in the background.

Step Two: In the morning, unravel the hair and finger through it: I combed the top of her hair to smooth it out a little, because it was fuzzy from overnight.

You will see Sarah in a different shirt in a minute- I asked her to change so that the hairstyle would show to better effect! :)

Step Three: Gently pull back hair from face, letting the curls fall gently over the ears. The idea in this style is a soft effect. Do not stretch the curls, do not worry about it being a little poufy. In fact, you want that look. Just coax the hair back and pin with bobby pins.

See, she is visiting the bloggy world while I slave over her hair! ;)

You want the front and top part of the hair to look like loose waves. I wasn't happy with one side, so I took the curling iron and crimped the top a little to make it wavier. Next time I hope to start the bandanna waves a little higher on her head to get more volume at the roots. Here is a side-view of this step:
At this point in the style, you could just stop and put a clip or comb over the bobby pins. This style is more of the "Young Ada" and is very pretty too.

Step Four: Gather the rest of the hair into your hand. Leave out two sections, as thick as you would like them to be for the side curls, one on either side of where the coiffure will be. Very gently twist into a coiffure or very loose bun. Again, leave the curls and waves to fall softly where they will. Pin in place with hairpins. My camera would not focus as well as I wished it to. In these pictures the bun looks rather messy, but it was very pretty in real life :)

Step Five: Now you will curl the side-curls. Depending on how well your bandanna waves set up, you may not need to use a curling iron. I wanted to get ringlets though, so I dampened the sections I had left out so that I could re-curl them, using the iron. I ended up splitting each section in half and making two curls out of it, then finger-combing through them so that they would be looser and join. The idea is to make it look natural, not set in stone! :)

Step Six: The style is now technically finished. Play around with the hair, add more pins if the bun is slipping, and fix the side-curls to your taste. Spray style in place, if desired.
At this point you may add a comb above the bun, but I preferred leaving the style natural. Actually this would be a really sweet style to use fresh flowers in. A wild rose or two would look beautiful tucked by the side of the bun :)

So there you have it: The Ada Clare Pull-Back. It is not a hard style, and it is absolutely beautiful! The more it relaxes, the prettier it looks, which is a plus: who wants to work on a hairstyle and have it last only an hour? :) Thank you Sarah for being patient with me and making a loverly model! ;)

Please leave a comment and tell me what you think, and if you think I ought to make tutorials a regular thing :) ~Rachel


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