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Italian Renaissance Hairstyles

In keeping with my last post on Italian Renaissance costume I thought we would take a look at something we didn't touch much on; hairstyles. They were extremely varying; up and down, braided, netted, entwined with silks and ribbons, even pearls, and, of course, dyed, bleached, and curled. The only thing in somewhat short supply seems to be hats, and really who would want to cover up what you had spent so much time constructing?

"Do you have any idea how long it took me to get the curls placed?!"

1544 Portrait of Laura da Pola by Lotto
Occasionally a small cap, or scuffia, was worn either with side curls, or with most of the hair stuffed up underneathe:-
1490 portrait by Ghirlandaio

1502 Betrothal
1510 Portrait by Araldi
Another notable hair decoration was the reta, or hairnet. Some of these were beaded, some woven in decorative patterns, and some left very simple.
1505-1508 Siena

1545 Lavinia
Under and around these ornamentations, or even without them, hair was often braided or crimped.
There was the simple modesty of a veil, if you felt the need to cover up...
Or, if blending into the background wasn't your thing, there were big turbans, or simply huge ones. 
Marie de Bourginione

Licinio 1520

1466 Batista Sforza
And, of course, there were things that defy description.

For more information on hairstyles of the Italian Renaissance I reccomend visiting A Crowning Glory.


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