The child could not afford the hair stylist, so the child with time
on her hands, and some help from the mother, escaped the boredom of the
summer vacation, and decided that upgrading her appearance would be a
positive first step, especially if she had her eye on the little boy
next door. Might as well test his powers of observation. Later, it
got away from that raggedly look of loose hair, and kept everything neat
and together, in a simple fashion.
So the braided look became the look of childhood. Pioneer women would braid their hair because they also had the time and lacked the facilities to do otherwise. It became a trademark of the youthful (and innocent), of the native American (both men and women), and when enhanced, it could be significantly alluring as a trademark of femininity. Double braids curled up at the sides, not only kept everything neat and tidy, but kept the ends out of the way of food preparation and machinery. It became a very European look, whereas the extended double braids were school girls. The braids gave the child the opportunity for an emotional expression, sweeping them behind her in disdain at the attentions of the annoying boys, but she still had to be careful, as she was at risk of having the ends inserted into inkwells. Her braids were a method of communication, something that a boy could steal a touch of that was relatively proper.
Our selections of display include artists and art, actresses, fantasy, cartoon, and imaginary. Notice that to advance beyond the mere look of childhood and innocence, to grabbing attention from the onlookers, you had to create more than just a braid. The braid needed an enhancement for the wearer to really stand out. Pippi Longstocking had her braids sticking out at right angles, Jane March required the man's hat, Dorothy didn't need them actually braided, but they had to be tied with ribbons, frontier women and native Americans knew how to add color and combine them with other materials. Patty McCormack, the Bad Seed, could swish them around like whips to emphasize her meanness, and Martine (in Mr. Hulot's Holiday) always kept them curled into Swiss rolls to maintain the image of gentle femininity. The Herringbone style, popular with athletes, might be too reminiscent of something reptilian, so be careful in any creation of the single braid. There are also many kinds of braids that have evolved from black hairstyles.
Frida Kahlo painting
"Mr. Hulot's Vacation"
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