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Instructions for my Geisha-inspired style

July 31 2008 at 11:30 AM

Eri-Chan  (Login Eri-Chan)


A few of you ladies have asked for instructions for this bun and braids style in this post: To be honest it was my attempt to recreate in a more modern (and less cumbersome and time-consuming) way the traditional styles that geish and maiko (apprentice geisha) wear with their kimono. Here's a link to some pictures so you see what I mean.

So, quick rundown. You will need:

-two small, covered ponytail holders (something that blends with your hair and doesn't pull)
-lots of hair pins! (I prefer using stainless steel Amish hairpins, but anything that's hair friendly will be fine)
-whatever you like to use to part your hair
-a scrunchie to hold excess hair out of your way
-something to wrap your bun around**
-hair decorations

Here's the secret to this style. It's not a decorated bun; that green thing is actually the core of my bun, like a modified sock bun. I used what's called a 'kanoko.' It's a fabric tube about as long as my arm, used in traditional Japanese styles. Here's a picture of my collection, as well as the shape I wrapped my green one into for this style (basically I made a circle, then wrapped the left over end around and around, and tucked it in). If you don't have one of these doodads handy, try using a really thick scrunchie or a long scarf wrapped up into a circle.

Now that your hair toys are assembled, on to the styling. The front part of the style is just a Dutch Lace braid headband. For great instructions with pictures, go here: I start mine py parting my hair from just below my left ear, across the top of my head, to just below my right ear. Secure all other hair with the afformentioned scrunchie. To change the Dreamweaver instructions to a Dutch braid (a raised braid), cross the strands UNDER the middle strand, instead of over. When you get to the right ear, finish the braid tail all the way to the ends and secure with a covered band.

Next step is to construct the back part. First, make a smooth, neat ponytail wherever you want the center of you bun. I put mine a bit lower than the back center. Then, slide the wrapped kanoko/scarf over your ponytail, as if you were going to do a sock bun.

Now, starting on the right (or left, if you're left handed), wrap your ponytail over the cloth, and bring it back up through the middle. Basically, we're going to wrap the cloth in our hair, in a spiral pattern. Since I wanted the green to show, when I got to where I wanted the hair to stop on the other side, I just wrapped the extra tail under the bun. Here's a progress pic, about halfway through.

Now, pin like crazy!

Now that you bun is secure, it's time to fix the hanging braid from the front. I just wrapped mine under the bun, and back over the top, securing at the back again with pins. Finally, decorate with whatever you like: real flowers would look quite pretty, I think. But since it's blazing hot here, I used these. They're what's called 'tsumami kanzashi" and are made of lots of TINY squares of folded silk.

For shorter hair, you could actually just make a sock bun over the kanoko/scarf (there are good sock bun instructions somewhere on this website, I just couldn't find them tonight...), instead of wrapping it. Just remember to leave a small space at the bottom, so your pretty filling shows through! Also, for the headband braid, you could finish the end in a small bun off to the right side, if it's not long enough to wrap.

Okay, bedtime! Hope these instructions made sense. I tried to include photos for the easily confused bits. Let me know if you need clarification. Hope you have fun! If anyone does this style, please post pictures! Mata ne, ya'll! waves

\(^u^)/ ¬óLa!


Bra-strap/41"/As long as it'll stay healthy!
Natural light brown w/ auburn & gold highlights; especially in summer

 Respond to this message   

  • Wow! - Jane82 (not logged in) on Jul 31, 2008, 3:02 PM
  • Outstanding! - lacemitts on Jul 31, 2008, 3:30 PM
  • Thanks - Liz on Jul 31, 2008, 5:05 PM
  • Thank you so much! - willow on Aug 1, 2008, 3:13 AM
  • Wow - Schnauzer Mom on Aug 11, 2008, 1:35 PM

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