Friday, May 02, 2008

1920s hairstyles: Easy finger waves

When we were planning my 1920s wedding, my sister and I decided to try to find a way to do our hair in 1920s hairstyles. Laura asked her stylist, who showed her how to do easy finger waves.

Instead of doing the finger waves the old-fashioned way — painstakingly sculpting each wave with a comb — my sister's stylist showed her how to do it using wave clips. Here are a few pictures of the process that the photographers took while my sister was getting ready for the wedding.

Working section by section, Laura formed her hair into fingerwaves, placing the wave clips in the low spots of the waves to hold them. Her hair is naturally curly too (though not as curly as mine), so her stylist told her to work with where her hair naturally wants to wave or curl.

How to create fingerwaves

How to make finger waves

Once the wave clips were in place, Laura sprayed the section with hairspray and hit it with the hair dryer to set the waves.

My bridesmaids styling their hair into fingerwaves

My bridesmaids styling their hair into finger waves

And the end result:

My maid of honor's 1920s finger waves

I just have to post this one — it's a great picture of her hair, but the expression is classic. I guess the photographers caught her by surprise:

1920s hairstyles: Finger waves

This method didn't work in my hair, of course — mine is way too curly on its own to take to fingerwaves. However, I think my 1920s hairstyle still turned out great!



At 5:34 AM, Blogger Courtney said...

Your bridesmaid dresses are fabulous and PERFECT for my 1920s Art Deco wedding! Where did you find them and do they have other colors?!?!?
We are also from the Denver area (but moved to Houston a month ago) and will be having our wedding at the Dove House in Lafayette, CO because it was built in the 20's and has a fabulous art deco bar and stained glass domed ceiling.
Anyway, if you get a chance, please do let me know where you found your bridesmaid dresses! And your hair and your sister's are fantastic!!!

At 12:33 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...


Thanks for visiting! We foud the bridesmaid dresses at Camille La Vie, a bridal boutique. We got the dresses on sale because they were part of the summer 2006 collection, and it was late summer or early fall of 2006 at the time. They had longer-length dresses in the same style in their fall and winter collection that year.

Unfortunately, I don't know whether Camille La Vie still makes dresses in this particular style. They don't really specialize in vintage repro gowns -- it was just sheer luck that they had something so perfect.

For great repro 1920s and 1930s gowns, I highly recommend Unique Vintage Clothing, an eBay seller that specializes in flapper repro dresses.

At 10:29 AM, Blogger Vickster said...

hi there - i'm about to go on stage for a 20s play and would like to do my hair like your sister's. my hair's very curly (ringlets) so quite unmanageable. did your sister wet her hair before putting in the clips and did she comb it straight first? and what products did she use? any more tips wld be greatly appreciated.... thanks

At 12:39 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...


I think my sister did wet her hair, and then did the style as it dried. She brushed it and then let it dry enough to see where the hair naturally wanted to wave, and used that to tell her where to put the clips.

Her hair is naturally curly too, but she gets only loose curls. It's not as curly as mine. We tried this on my hair and it worked, but it would have taken some practice. (I ended up liking how my hair looked better with lots of product and drying naturally.)

I know she used hairspray while the clips were in to help set the style, but I don't know what base product she used. I do know she uses Alba products and she likes products with stronger hold than I do. I would suggest using more product rather than less. And definitely practice as much as you can with the time you've got!

Good luck! Or am I supposed to say, "Break a leg"?

At 1:34 PM, Blogger Ashley said...


I'm interested in tackling this hairstyle as well. What type of clips did your sister use? I don't even know where to begin!

At 11:18 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Ashley, sorry it's taken me so long to see your comment. I don't know what kind of clips my sister used for sure, but I remember them being little metal clips where you pinched one end to open them up. I think they are meant for holding a curler in place.


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