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A New Head of Hair


Great view, nice nail polish.  Life is looking good from the rooftop pool of my son’s apartment building.  That’s the Jefferson Memorial just above my left toe. 

Washington DC Skyline

Hugging my son for the first time in eight months has been the highlight of my trip, but pedicures and relaxing by the pool with my daughter-in-law have been quite delightful too. 

During last summer’s move-in trip there was no time for pampering and sunning by the pool, but we did manage to make time for a haircut.

Here is what I have managed to grow since my husband gave me that cute Telly Savalas look. 

Last year’s trip to D.C. included an afternoon at Mount Vernon.  After checking out my new look in the mirror I opted to wear a scarf and hat as I explored George Washington’s lovely home and gardens.  That white skin wasn’t ready for the August sun!

Bald head after chemo

If I had known last summer what I would find when I visited Colonial Williamsburg this weekend I might have chosen it over Mount Vernon. 

Mount Vernon charmed me with its Potomac River view and lovely gardens, but in Williamsburg I discovered a barber and peruke maker!

Williamsburg Wig Shoppe

Something like this might have been just what I needed to cover my naked head.

Wig at Colonial Williamsburg

Goat hair, human hair, horse hair.  Which would I choose?

Wig hair

The colonial gentleman in the shoppe explained that this goat hair would not keep its curl, and would require frequent visits to his shoppe for upkeep.  Sounds like a pain doesn’t it?

Goat hair for colonial wigs

 Materials?  Color?  Style?  So many choices!

Wigs at Colonial Williamsburg According to the Colonial Williamsburg website, one 18th-century source stated that it took six men six days working from sun-up to sundown to complete a wig

Wigmaking at Colonial Williamsburg

 Once all the rows of hair were sewn in place the wig was curled with tools like these.

Colonial wig styling tools

 Trimming and shaping each curl completed the process.

Crafting a wig at Colonial Williamsburg
Shopping at Colonial Williamsburg was a fascinating experience, but it’s not exactly convenient to my house.  And besides a peruke usually referred to  a wig worn by men in the 17th and 18th centuries.  Maybe something a little more modern and feminine would  be more appropriate. 

Thankfully I had a good option a little closer to home.  About the time my hair began to fall out my daughter accompanied me to the local office of the American Cancer Society.  A variety of wigs were available to try, and I went home that day with a head of hair nicer than any I had ever grown on my own. I left that day with a new head of hair, a bag of other goodies, and a boost in confidence during a very uncertain time. 

If you or someone you love ever finds themself in a similar circumstance I hope you will look up the ACS office in your area.  They have a lot to offer, and it’s probably more convenient than Williamsburg!





One Comment

  1. Posted 19 Sep ’15 at 1:24 am | Permalink

    I am teaching a bniinegng course on family history here in Wellington, FL. It is taking place at a store that is devoted almost exclusively to scrap booking and scrap booking materials. The owner is very interested in genealogy but hadn’t thought about turning genealogy into a great scrap booking project. I attended your lecture in 2007 at the Florida State Genealogical Society’s annual conference in Orlando. I remember the great job you did on the book you had on display.I would like to purchase your book How to Create.. Could you please tell me the cost of book.

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