Urban Foraging for Winter Hairstyles: Hen and Chicks Braids

Welcome back, babes. We are just on an Urban Foraging for Winter Hairstyles bender here at HTHG, If you haven’t noticed. We just can’t seem to stop sticking things in our hair to celebrate the season. Thank you for bearing with us:)7U6A9069

This one is a sweet little braid, done on my daughter Marley. I felt very drawn to Hen and Chicks a few weeks back, when 2 friends of mine were due to give birth any minute. I kept seeing Hens and Chicks everywhere, or maybe noticing them for the first time because of the miracle of human multiplication that seemed to be happening all around me. IMG_9920

 

 

( Succulent arrangement photo from @rotdcreations)

Witnessing childbirth is really magical because it is like the splitting if one soul and body, simultaneously, into 2. This creation of new life is also an extension of a universal life. This miracle also happens to be how the Hen and Chicks plant (Sempervivum) grow…… Sempervivum translates literally into Live Forever because these little plants propagate so quickly and bountifully, multiplying and extending the eternal mother life forever.

With this in mind, I give you….

Hen and Chicks Braids

PicMonkey Collage

Begin by finding a rock wall or hedge in your neighborhood. Look in the cracks to see if you can find Hen and Chicks growing. They are all over the place!

Carefully, by the base of the plant where the green connects to the root, pluck several hens and several chicks of different sizes. If you take them roots and all, you will be able to wear them in your hair, and then re-plant them when you are done!

To make your braid, flip your head upside down and start a fishtail braid in a small section of hair at the nape of the neck.

Braid about an inch and a half….. Now, add in hair to both sides, working your way from the base, upwards toward the top of your head.

(for reference, this braid is the Blood Eagle Braid in reverse;)

Continue fishtail braiding, adding in hair every inch and a half or so. Once you have added all your hair in, and your braid is at the top of your head, continue braiding to the end of the hair, then secure the end with an elastic.

Wrap the free braid end into a bun on top of the head, tucking the tail underneath the bun, and pinning the bun securely.

Now, using hairpins, pierce gently through the roots of your Hen and Chicks, and pin them into your braid to adorn your crown. Have any friends who are about to give birth? Share this one with them, or do their hair for them with the Hen and Chicks Braid!

xoxo, HTHG

Ceremonial Head Wrap Tutorial

Hi honeys. I recently had the absolute luxury of an entire day to myself, in my house, cleaning done and chores cast to the side……….And a little project that had been burning a whole through my mind for over a year.

I made myself a nice cup of coffee, and I put on the news radio with the intention of catching up on some world news. I got out my fabric……….Huge swaths of linen, cotton gauze, and bamboo, and I began cutting. 4 inch strips, 9 feet long. I cut and cut until my hands ached and the blades of my scissors gnawed and hacked. Cutting things is my happy place.

100 strips later, with a gigantic pile of fabric strips and fabric lint on my living room floor, my head filled with the awfulness of war and ignorance, I turned off the radio, sneezed, and made the assertion that running these fabric strips through the wash was the right choice. Why? Because it seemed like the right thing to do.

While the strips laundered, I prepared a bucket of Indigo Dye in my back yard. I picked some veggies and weeds from the garden and juiced them, and put on some old country music.IMG_6602

When the washing machine beeped, I eagerly lifted the lid. Inside was a dreadlock of fibers and fabric. I lifted it out in a large clump. I thought to myself ‘this is going to be a long day.’

I spent the next 3 hours untangling the mess, strip by strip. I practiced breathing and having good posture while I worked, a difficult practice considering that a large part of myself felt absolutely tortured by my own stupidity for not washing the fabric before cutting it into strips! and I just kind of wanted to melt into nonexistence.

Something that the last year has really taught me, though, is that wasted time and energy is only wasted if a lesson is not learned. I thought about that, and felt better. This is a part of the process, and it is part of what will make the next time even better. I think it’s important to be kind to ourselves especially when trying new things. Needless to say, I talked myself down from the ledge with this little affirmation…….Take the lesson, enjoy the process, keep going. The Ceremony of Pushing Through!

Screen Shot 2015-10-05 at 12.55.49 PMOnce I had untangled the worlds larges fabric dreadlock, took off my shoes and went back outside where I proceeded to I dye the strips in all different ways, some I double dipped to darken them, some I krinkled up and rubber-banded and dipped in the dye bath, some I twisted into knots and dipped, and some I dipped so that they would be more gradient, like an ombre. My hands were denim blue by the end of  it, and I had blue splatters all over my feet, arms, and face. I was surrounded by 100 blue dyed strips which hung from my clothes line, gently fluttering in the wind.

After the strips dried, I braided them, twisted them, and crocheted them into long ropes and shorter bands, with the intention of adorning peoples hair and heads in a a multitude of creative and meaningful ways.

IMG_6706When I finished with the fabric, I used the last of my dye on some vintage paper roses, dipping them in one at a time and setting them in the sun……For future Blue Rose Power Crowns.IMG_7616

 

 

 

 

 

At the end of the day, I had 25 beautiful unique head wraps, each with it’s own personality. Two of my favorites were simple, ombre-dyed strips of linen which I had knotted every few inches from one end to the other…..They seemed the perfect ones for my daughters Marley and Selah.

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Mars was kind enough to let me shoot a quick little tutorial of a lovely way to wear a head wrap such as this one.

 Head Wrap Twisted Hairstylemarstar

We began by wrapping her head with the knotted strip, it banded around twice. I wound the ends of the strip around the band a few times to secure the wrap.

Then, starting on one side, twist a small section of hair, and wind it around the bands, tucking it securly in and around the headwrap. Take another small section of hair next to the first one and repeat.

Now do the same thing, starting from the other side. Work your way towards the center, twisting winding and tucking in hair around your bands.

Lovely!

 

 

Over the next few months, I will be posting more ways that one can wear these hand-made beauties.

These headwraps were made with the intention of helping us find more ceremony in the small details of our daily lives, with more intention setting in our self care routine, and homage paid towards the power of adornment.

These head wraps are now available in the HTHG shop! Get yours today and let it help you ground, connect, and channel your creativity.

Made with love and light!

xo, HTHG

 

 

 

Sunday DIY: Rose Bud Hair Pins

7U6A3078Today, while it rained quietly outside, I made some rose-bud hair pins with bobby pins, dried rosebuds and a glue gun.

It was such a sweetly simple project which took me all of 15 minutes to complete, and left me feeling so satisfied!

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Get an assortment of different bobby pins, a glue gun or a nice thick rubber-like glue, some small dried rosebuds ( I get mine from my local herbal apothacary, but they can easily be harvested, or found online through Mountain Rose Herbs) and you will also need a small piece of thick paper, cardboard or a business care or old credit card:)

I made 2 kinds of rose pins, single buds on the ends of hairpins, and a row of buds across the length of a bobby pin.

For the bobby pin one, I put the pin on a card to keep the prongs separated so they wouldn’t get glued together. Then, I gathered my rose buds, making sure to trim off loose outer petals so they were nice, neat and compact. 7U6A3034

I squeezed a small dollop of glue just above the base of the flower, low along one side. Then, I smooshed the flower directly onto the flat side of the pin, clamping it down tightly between my fingers to make sure it grabbed. Then, I did this to 5-6 more buds, squishing them tightly next to each other along the length of the pin.

7U6A3035For the single bud pins, I put a larger dollop of glue right at the base of the bud, and layed the crux of the pin right on top of the glue, allowing it to sink into the dollop and adhere to the bud.

msrleyI let them dry overnight, and woke up to lovely rose bud pins, ready to wear! (okay, I had to do a little careful yanking to get the pins off the card where the glue had seeped through and dried) No biggie.

 

This easy and lovely-smelling project left me very pleased, and inspired to make a pretty hairdo happen. When Mars came home from school that next day, I grabbed her for a quick little do outside in front of the grapevine.

 

To do this hairstyle, I started with a little twist pinned on each side, halfway to the back of the head.

 

Then one by one, I made three small twisted buns in a row, pinned securely and discreetly.

 

I finished the hairstyle with a garnish of roses and a few pretty leaves from the garden:)

 

If you love this sweet DIY, check our Crystal Hair Pin tutorial. I think you will love it!

 

Enjoy! xo, HTHG

Tea and Braids: Tradition for family

The other night, we had tea and braids night at my house. It was an excuse to quietly bond with my kids before bedtime. It doesn’t happen often that we get to hang out together, quietly doing projects. Key word quietly. My daughters know how to use their voices.

7U6A5746The girls love Sleepytime tea and Wildflower Honey, collected by our cousins in the Montana Rockies. It feels like a special ritual, and it helps calm them. I am in love with my ceramic mug by my favorite potter, Adrien Miller. 7U6A5751

I have been teaching Marley to sew, a skill that I have collected in tidbits from both my parents, and both my grandmothers. My mom and her mom were very dedicated to following patterns. My dad and his mom were quite bold when it came to winging it and sewing by hand.

I consider my rudimentary sewing skills to be some of the most treasured practical skills that I have. Marley can now thread a needle, knot the thread, make stitches, and tie off the stitches at the end. I recently tried to throw away a tattered old pair of her underwear that had holes, but she insisted on mending them instead. She now proudly wears them, and I proudly pretend I am Caroline Wilder, raising pioneer children. Next stop, making balloons out of pig-bladders to play with. Simple pleasures!

Also, Marley mended a gaping hole in one of her favorite blankets, then tore out the stitches, deciding she liked it much better with the hole.

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7U6A57577U6A5781While she sewed, I brushed and braided her hair, which is like fine spiders silk but as dense and pale as pound cake. In the back ground, an uninterested fairy with droopy wings pretended to be the princess of the puppies.7U6A5766

7U6A5777For fun, I wrapped Marley’s dutch braid into a bun and pinned it with my incredible long steel 2 prong pins that I am obsessed with. I get them from an online shop called Mennonite Maidens. You should seriously check these chicks out.

Do you have daughters or long haired sons? Tea and Braids is a lovely evening-time bonding tradition for children and their parents. My girls love having braids in their hair, and then mermaid-y waves for the days following.

xo, HTHG

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