1910s Hairstyles: A Short Compendium

Last week I mentioned that a friend of mine would be hosting a 1912 Titanic themed murder mystery party at the end of July. Since I believe it’s never too early to start planning for themed murder mystery parties, I’ve already began to research hairstyles. It’s really best to start from the top.

A drawing by Charles Dana Gibson. This shows the basic hairstyle that the Gibson Girl wore. From Loyola University.

The first hairstyle that I am thinking of going with is a Gibson Girl hairstyle. The Gibson Girl was created in the late 1890s by Charles Dana Gibson, and embodied the ideal woman of the turn-of-the-century. Gibson called her ‘the American girl to all the world.” The Gibson Girl was supposedly based off of Evelyn Nesbit, a artists model and chorus girl from that time. Nesbit had quite the life, and rumor has it that L.M. Montgomery used her as an inspiration for Anne Shirley of Anne of Green Gables fame.

Evelyn Nesbit at age 17. Said to be the model and inspiration for the first Gibson Girl. From Wikipedia.

Since I’m not the best at figuring out how to do hair (and by “not the best”, I mean I wear my hair the same all year long), I found this lovely tutorial for a Gibson Girl hair style on Locks of Elegance.

I think this turned out well on my hair, despite it being my first time trying this tutorial. I don’t have the thickest hair, so it may be best if I gave my hair a little curl before trying it again. It’s a little messy, but I think it gives me a mischievous “first class – Nouveau Riche” look.

My first try doing a “Gibson Girl” hairstyle. I have very fine hair, so this look isn’t as full as a real Gibson Girl look.

An easier version of this hairstyle is from Simply Stardust. I’ve done this version many times before, and it’s a really easy, really nice hair-do. I think for dress-up parties it needs some dressing up itself, though.

I like to dress up the “Simple Gibson Tuck” with a bejeweled comb. Or you could choose flowers. Whatever suits your fancy.

Historical Hairstyles is a nice blog for looking at different hair from all eras. It doesn’t have very many tutorials, but it’s a good source for ideas.

Finally, here are too hairstyles that I think would look really nice and really unusual for a theme party.

Irene Castle, circa 1910. I really love that she was one of the first women to have a bob. This could be easily done on shorter hair with a curling iron, and longer hair with a few tricks and tucks. From Pinterest.


Wedding site BHLDN has a nice look-book with downloadable tutorials on how to create these hairstyles. This one is very romantic and could easily be modified (a ribbon around the head instead of a feather) to look Edwardian.



“‘Weekend?’ What is a ‘Weekend'”

A weekend is when Downton Abbey comes on. Specifically, Sunday night, 8 PM Central Time.

I fell hard last year for Downton Abbey when the first series came on Masterpiece Theater. What was there not to love? Here’s a list:

1. The clothes: gorgeous! My favorite years for clothing are the late ‘teens, but in Downton I really prefer the 1st season, pre-war, clothes. My favorite Downton outfit: Sybil’s harem pants.

Sybil's harem pants.

2. The history: So, yes, not everything is probably historically accurate. But I love that the story spans the whole decade, unlike many other movies that take place in this decade. It seems that the movie industry thinks the 1910s is either war (which Downton does use as a plot device, but it remains rooted in the homefront) or Titanic. Anne can attest to my coldness for Titanic.

I have an extreme love for Lady Sybil (Jessica Brown Findlay). Such a great spirit. I kind of associate myself with her.

3. The meanies: They’ve become some of my favorite characters. I think it’s because they’re so real, and, in O’Brien’s case, trying to redeem themselves in series 2.

Thomas and O'Brien will always hold a special place in my heart. Also, Vulture has the best paper dolls of the cast.

4. Last, but not least, the Dowager Countess’ quotes: Maggie Smith is the greatest person ever. I thought this before Downton and I will think this long after Downton ends.


Oh, how I adore you!

Now, to wait for Sunday and the Christmas special!