Monday, April 27, 2015

Tika & Hair Art

As I was combing a (grumpy) Tika the other day, I mused about something I had just read (refer to below). The lesson-booklet stated that "human hair was not the only kind of hair that was utilized. Hides of domestic and wild animals were saved so that their hair could be used for many different utilitarian purposes." Further down in the article was this:  "The hair of rabbits, dogs, goats and woodchurcks was valued (to use)." 

The Daughters of the Utah Pioneers (DUP) is an organization for female desdendants of the Utah pioneers, those hardy souls who entered the Salt Lake Valley in 1846 (or something close.... I do not qualify so am a bit fuzzy on the details).  The group publishes a reqular lesson (more like a little booklet) and the Lesson for April 2012 was titled "Hair Art." It was most interesting!

"Pioneer women in the 1800s were quick to adopt and enjoy crafts that would beautify their homes. Hair art, which had been popular in Europe from the 1400s through the 1800s, was one of the ways that the women decorated their walls with pictures made from  the hair of members of their families, friends, famous people and sometimes from members of organizations. Hair was also used in memorial jewelry and for personal adornment." 

"During the Utah pioneer era (and I know that this was done all over Victorian America), a lady seldom cut her hair. However, during the time that hair craft was popular, most ladies collected hair from their brushes and stored it in a "hair receiver," a small container that they kept on their dressing tables. When enough hair was saved, the flowers for the wreaths and other projects could be made by securing the hair with fine wire over a rod and then creating a series of loops and forming the shape that was wanted: Leaves, petals, buds or complete flowers."  

Don't think I would have the patience for such art. And with women's hair much shorter these days, seems to me it would be impossible. And Tika's short red hair/fur would most certainly be impossible!  

"Yep, I agree," mused Tika as she cheered up when I put the comb away.

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