- Reasons Why You Must Wear a Headwrap This Summer
- Embrace African/African American culture and heritage
African women have worn head wraps for centuries. Danya London Fashions For All write that, a group of African slave women appear in a 1707 painting that was created by Dirk Valkenburg, a Danish painter, that depicted them wearing head wraps that appeared high on the forehead and above the ears. However, it is believed that African cultures used head wraps before the days of slavery so that men could show off their wealth and the level of their social status and so that women could prove that they were prosperous and spiritual."
Painting by Dirk Valkenburg
Helen Bradley Griebel in her much quoted paper The African American Woman's Headwrap: Unwinding the Symbols, has this to say about the history of head wraps in black culture:
"THE AFRICAN AMERICAN headwrap holds a distinctive position in the history of American dress both for its longevity and for its potent signification's. It endured the travail of slavery and never passed out of fashion. The headwrap represents far more than a piece of fabric wound around the head.
This distinct cloth head covering has been called variously "head rag," "head-
tie," "head handkerchief," "turban," or "headwrap." I use the latter term here. The headwrap usually completely covers the hair, being held in place by tying the ends into knots close to the skull. As a form of apparel in the United States, the headwrap has been exclusive to women of African descent.
The headwrap originated in sub-Saharan Africa, and serves similar functions for both African and African American women. In style, the African American woman's headwrap exhibits the features of sub-Saharan aesthetics and worldview. In the United States, however, the headwrap acquired a paradox of meaning not customary on the ancestral continent. During slavery, white overlords imposed its wear as a badge of enslavement. Later it evolved into the stereotype that whites held of the "Black Mammy" servant. The enslaved and their descendants, however, have regarded the headwrap as a helmet of courage that evoked an image of true homeland-be that ancient Africa or the newer homeland, America. The simple head rag worn by millions of enslaved women and their descendants has served as a uniform of communal identity; but at its most elaborate, the African American woman's headwrap has functioned as a "uniform of rebellion" signifying absolute resistance to loss of self-definition."
Paola Mathe of www.fanmdjanm.com in a gorgeous green wrap turban
- Up Your Confidence Level!
Women from every culture and background now wear headwraps. I personally feel beautiful and glorious when I don one. It gives me a sense of power and femininity. So why don’t you rock one and feel beautiful and confident!
Nadira037 for Ankara Kouture
- Add a Chic Fashion Statement Any Outfit
Headwraps have hit the US fashion stage in a big way in the last few years. One reason for this is that American celebs like Beyonce, Solange, Tracee Ellis Ross and others have been seen wearing them about town. Another reason is because they are a great way to be fashionable and chic without having to do your hair. Headwraps come in many fabrics and patterns and can be worn in many ways. No matter how you wear yours rest assured you will make a statement wherever you go!
Courtesy of www.pinterest.com
And last but certainly NOT least!!!!!
- Put Your Inner Queen on Fleek
African/African American women wear their headwraps as a queen wears a crown. In Nigeria the women wear gele to special ceremonies. Indeed, they tie and wrap them around their heads like a coronet. The higher and bigger they are the more dramatic and regal the wearer appears.
According to the Helen Bailey Grier paper: The most significant difference between the Euro-American and Afro-centric manner of styling the cloth is that rather than tying the knot under her chin, the African American woman usually ties the knots somewhere on the crown of her head, either at the top or on the sides, often tucking the ends into the wrap.
Although the African-American woman sometimes ties the fabric at the nape of the neck, her form of styling always leaves her forehead and neck exposed; and, by leaving her face open, the head-wrap visually enhances the facial features.
The African head-wrap thus works as a regal coronet, drawing the onlooker’s gaze up, rather than down.
In effect, African women wear the head-wrap as a queen might wear a crown.
In this way, the head-wrap corresponds to African and women’s manner of hair styling, wherein the hair is pulled so as to expose the forehead and is often drawn to a heightened mass on top of the head.
Any woman who wants to feel queenly and special can style their head wrap in the Afro-centric style! There are countless ways to style your “crown”. The possibilities are almost endless. Play with it to reflect your style. There are many online tutorials out there to teach the basics. Some of my favorites can be found at www.fanmdjanm.com, nadira037 on Youtube and www.thewraplife.com.
SO, get out there, get some wraps and rock them ladies!
Folasade Adeoso www.lovefola.com
Here is a list of sites that sell affordable headwraps in many different fabrics:
- Fanm Djanm- fanmdjanm.com
- AfroWearHouse- etsy.com/shop/AfrowearHouse
- The Wrap Life- thewraplife.com
- Ankara Couture- ankara-kouture.com