Avainsana: french braids

Hair for weddings

Those of you who follow my Instagram or Facebook page know, that I was doing a lot of hairdos for a wedding last Saturday. Today, I was planning hairstyles for next Saturday’s wedding. Such an honour to be asked to do some wedding styles, so I thought I’d share last weekend’s styles with you.

corset braid on flower girlFirst of all, I had the honour of styling the two little flower girls’ hair for my cousin’s wedding. They have very thin and curly hair, but the older girl’s hair is quite long. I did two dutch braids with a ribbon for her, and let the end of the braid just curl nicely. This lasted really well and still looked good after running in some fields, dancing and playing. For the younger flower girl, I made a hair clip bow with the same green ribbon. It looked cute until she pulled it out, but it lasted fairly long!

Other than the flower girls, I did three adult’s hair: two lace braid hairdos, one of which I finished with a ponytail and a bow, and the other one as a rolled bun and a flower. The third adult hairdo was a starburst bun on some lovely pink hair:

two lace braids into a ponytaillace rolled updofrench braided starburst bun With adult hairdos, it’s important to do something that the model is comfortable with. All these three were very happy with their braids, so I thought they were a success.

And finally, of course, I did my own three daughters. The older two told me exactly what they wanted, and my youngest one hates her hair on her face, so I chose a style that would keep her hair out of the way for the whole party:

double french braid bunheart braid lace braid half up dofeather braid into two french braids

So last weekend was kind of a practise run: next saturday I’m doing three bridesmaids hair! We did some trial hair today, so it should be fairly easy, but as it is the bridesmaids, I think there will be more pressure!

And just to add some extra pressure: I will be doing the bridesmaids in the morning before working at a kids’ festival, doing braids… that will be about 6 hours of braiding all together! I think my fingers will be hurting 🙂

Braided tiara

I am so excited to have won my first ever braiding competition!!! Katie @abellasbraids on Instagram had a contest, so I entered a few of my braids. There were over 500 entries in the intermediate category, and all of the braids were amazing! I never thought I’d have a chance. Go and check out #abellasbraidsintermediate on Instagram to see all the incredible hairstyles in the competition. Here is my winning braided tiara, which I did on my daughter for her good friend’s birthday party:

braided tiara  with no heat waves

In the last few hours I have been asked so many times about this braid, that I thought it is easiest to do a blog post to try to explain it.

Many thought that it is some kind of a feather braid, and I think a feather braid would have been a good idea if I knew what I was doing when I started. But I made up the braid as I braided…

I started by making 5 mini braids (just normal 3 strand braids) in a line in the middle of her head from ear to ear.

Next, I started a lace braid headband from the right ear, and every time when I got to a mini braid, I pulled it to the front (face side) and braided the lace braid over it. And when the mini braids made a nice size loop, I braided them into the lace braid.

Finally, I was not happy with how the back of the lace braid looked like, so I started another mini braid near the right ear. I pulled it through the main braid, braided a little bit and attached it to the back of the headband by doing a stitch of lace braiding, pulled it through the main braid again etc.  And finished by attaching everything together.

Here are a few pictures to show different sides of the hairdo:

Braided tiara

I am so honored to have won the competition. Abella’s Braids has been my biggest inspiration lately. Katie does amazing braids, and I’m a super fan, so it really means a lot to me! Go and check her out on Instagram, Youtube and her blog: http://www.abellasbraids.com/

And of course, if you haven’t already, go and check out @jennishairdays on Instagram!


Winter braids to fit under a hat

We just returned from a holiday in Finland. It was good practice for the winter, as I had to think of hairdos that stay nice under a hat. Here are a few that I came up with:

flower braid spiral half up hairdo5-strand lace-braid half-up do

The one on the left I started from the middle of the swirl and lace braided around a few times, then did a little french braid into normal braid with the hair on the right, and combined at the back. The braid on the right is a 5-strand lace braid adding hair from the left.

waterfall braid french braid comboThe last one is a combination of waterfall and french braids. It caught my eye once on Pinterest, and I’ve done it a few times, always gets many comments, as it is a bit different. I can only get this braid to work on my oldest daughter, as she is old enough to help a bit by holding the strands from the waterfall braid until I braid them into the two french braids. Without her help, the strands from the waterfall become loose, and the whole thing falls apart.

All three hairstyles lasted couple of days and didn’t get messed up under a hat, so perfect for winter.

Back to school hairdos

Ten days to go till the start of school, so we are trying some back to school hairstyles.

With a first-grader and a fourth-grader, I have two criteria for a good school hairdo:

. You need to be able to do it the night before. At least until we get used to getting up early again, there is no way I’ll have time to do hair in the morning!

2. The hair needs to keep out of the face, and out of paint, glue, food etc.

So, what always works well, is two basic french braids. They will keep over night, the hair is completely out of the way, and normally the braids don’t get undone in play or sports. 

To make it pretty, I like to do the two french braids a bit asymmetrical, following the girls’ natural parting instead of parting the hair down the middle:

two french braids two french braids, asymmetrical parting

When my oldest girl started school, she always lost the elastic bands in the end of the braids. The solution is to make the two french braids very near the parting, and tying them up high (below, left). That’s also nice just for a change.

Another variation is to braid the two french braids far from each other, near the face (below, right).

 two french braids near the middle parting two french braids near the face

So, if you just learn to do the simple french braid, you already have quite a few different hairdos to play with!

Watch out for the sunburn

While it’s pouring down outside I thought I’d cheer myself up with some of last summer’s pictures…


This hairdo is great for camping trips, swimming, or any other sports really. Just do 5 or 6 french braids, the only tricky part is dividing the hair.

BUT watch out if you are very light skinned, you’ll easily end up with a stripy sunburn! (I should have remembered this from wearing this hairdo myself for a music festival a while back…) Normally in the summer I frequently change the side of the parting on my girls’ hair, or I just do one french braid or ponytail to cover the scalp. Luckily the above hairdo works quite well with a scarf as well:


School photos

It was school photos last week. Quite tricky as most beautiful braids look great from the side or back, but quite dull from the front. Also, you send the girl to school with a nice hair do, but never know what happens before the photo.

Luckily it was not raining or windy, but it was a Thursday. They have a sports class on Thursdays. So, if the photo was after the sports class, she would be pulling her clothes off, pulling her sport’s top on and then off and clothes on again, great potential for messing her hair up completely! And for an extra twist, she requested curls. Oh, and it was a Thursday… the little sisters go to kindergarten on Thursday mornings, so we struggle to get everyone out the door on time in the best of times. So this was our solution:


I’ve concluded that ”half up dos” are best for school photos: no matter which way she tilts her head, some of her hair will show in the picture. The ”half up do” is also good when you make curls by braiding the hair, as there is always straight hair on the top of the head: the little braid will hide it.

So, the night before, we did two loose french braids to get the curls. Then, in the morning we opened the french braids and did a ”side lace braid”. The lace braid is really easy and holds the hair really well. You make it like a french braid but only pick up hair from on side.

This picture was taken AFTER school, and it still looks great. I haven’t seen the school pictures yet, but I think hair-wise, it was a success.