Saturday, 24 October 2015

Dark, re-fronted commercial wig

When I first started learning about ventilation, I bought a few inexpensive (and a couple of not-so-inexpensive) 'lace front' wigs, to see how they were made.

In hindsight, the commercial wigs really weren't much help – the knotting was not great for the most part, and all but one of them were knotted on stiff, scratchy monofilament mesh, not lace at all.

As a result I have a small collection of mediocre commercial wigs that are just sitting on a shelf in my office.  I decided, rather than let them go to waste, that I would re-front them using decent lace and finer knotting.

I just finished the first one.  The main body of the wig is good, and even the knotting wasn't terrible, it's just that the scratchy monofilament (aka 'German' lace) was very uncomfortable.  Also the shape of the hairline was very round and unnatural.

I have redone the entire lace section using only single (2-way) knotting, and I think the final result is much more natural.  This is high temperature synthetic hair, so it probably wouldn't work as a hair-replacement wig, but I think it would make an excellent theatre or opera wig or even a fun fashion wig.


As a side note, I have the wig on a cheap plastic mannequin head that I bought to help when I'm working on hairlines.  I find the eyes really disturbing, which is why I have it wearing sunglasses... :P

8 comments:

  1. Yay, a new post. Great job on the refronted synthetic. Very natural. You've nailed the graduation/density at the edges of your hairlines. And as an aside, agreed, dolls in general are just plain creepy! LOL

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    1. HAHA! Thanks for the comments, I appreciate the feedback! :)

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  2. The wig is very Nick Cave, I like it!

    Where did you get that head? I've been looking for something similar, something with a face, that I could use to model my hair pieces and could handle dye being spilled on it.

    I'm stuck in limbo right now, waiting on my real hair order to come and ordering the 20/30 denier lace soon, so I don't want to start on anything new until I get those things. I'm chomping at the bit to start on my next piece! waaaah!

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    1. Ah, you're right about Nick Cave, I hadn't thought of him! Maybe I should send it to him, he's getting pretty thin on top now... :P

      The head was $12 on Aliexpress:
      http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Male-Mannequin-Training-Head-Make-Up-Face-Closed-Eye-Eyelash-Extension-Practice-Model-Free-Shipping/1969754090.html

      The one I got was a bit lopsided, but it still works. I bought it because the circumference was close to an actual head size rather than the ridiculously small styro heads. You can actually pin into it too! It would make a good cheap head block for someone on a budget.

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  5. Wait. That's synthetic hair? The knots are really invisible and discreet! My main fear of using synthetic hair is that the knots will be ugly and obvious. How are the knots up close?

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    1. Yes, it's all synthetic. It would depend on the purpose of the wig. If it was one that was to be worn every day as a hair replacement, to be honest I'm not sure that it would be undetectable up close at the hairline. It's not terrible, at worst it might look like a bad hair transplant, but you would definitely be better off using human hair at least at the hairline and bleaching the knots. If the hair is style differently, so that it comes forward a bit rather than being so completely exposed, it would be fine. I think also on darker skin it would work quite well. The synthetic is amazing for the rest of the piece though!

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