Q: I'm a bridesmaid in a "medieval" wedding. I'll be wearing a flower halo, and I have short hair. The bride would like to
see it somewhat braided in a halo as well, but I dont know how to do it so that it looks right. Also, I’m afraid I might not have
enough hair to put in that sort of braid. Can you help with any suggestions?
A: Well, braided hairstyles were common in the medieval period primarily because most women wore their hair long and such styling
was a simple and secure way to keep the hair out of the way while performing your tasks. Hairdressers were the prerogative solely of
the wealthy and elite and even they worked under the concept of creating a style that would last for days.
Depending on how short your hair is, you may, indeed, have trouble styling the hair in a
traditional braided crown. However, there are ways to fake the look of longer hair when dealing with a braided style. One such
method is to use vertical or near-vertical rows of braids which angle toward the crown and top of the head. These can be threaded
with ribbons whose ends can then be used to create the “braided crown” if desired, or else the ends of the braids themselves can be
hidden by and provide anchor points for the floral halo you will be wearing.
Another option would be to wear a small coif – common to the middle ages and the renaissance –
made perhaps of a simple cotton lace or sheer linen - which would provide a mask for your short hair and upon which you can place the floral halo.