Making a Wig with Wefted Mohair
by Gloria "Mimi" Winer
This information is in my patterns "Annie Agnes", "The Queens Jester", and "Jazz", but in case you haven't read them here is a summary.
A yard of wefted mohair will easily wig a 16 to 17 inch doll (the size my dolls are).
After cleaning and drying the mohair, (instructions for cleaning are in the patterns mentioned above), Pick out several "locks" and pull them straight between your two hands. Then take the less curly end and trim off the end so the hairs are even.
- Lay the cut end on a one yard by 1 inch strip of Solvy®. Solvy® is a water soluble stabilizer used for machine embroidery. It is available at JoAnn's and other fabric shops in one yard packages on the notion wall.
- Continue to carefully lay locks close together until the strip of Solvy® is filled with mohair.
- Lay a second strip on top so that the mohair is sandwiched between the two strips. Pin securely with straight pins every half inch or so, so that they are perpendicular to the length of the strip.
- Carefully take them to the sewing machine and adjust the stitch length to about 1.5mm and the width to narrow Stitch two or three times across the top of the strip being sure to catch all the hair in the stitches. Stitch again exactly on top of the first stitches. If you are not sure it will hold, stitch again with the stitch a tiny bit wider than before. This should be enough. Oh yes, the thread should be a color close to the color of the hair.
- Put the Solvy® end of the weft into a container of warm water for a few minutes until the Solvy® has dissolved.
- Allow the hair to dry naturally. Do not use a hair dryer, it is wool and it may felt if agitated when wet.
Trim away the hair sticking out the top of the stitching. The stitches is what holds the hair together and weft is now ready to stitch or glue (use Grrrip® or Fabri-tac® glue) to the dolls head.
I cut sections of weft in about 1-1/2" to 2" lengths to make it easier to glue in place.
- Mark the hairline first. Begin at the nape of the neck and mark the hairline with your purple air soluble marker.
- Then mark concentric circles about a quarter inch apart from the nape, around the head until you reach the crown.
If you glue, when the glue has dried, you can cut and style the hair.
I curl the hair after it is on the doll. I wet it with a spray bottle And comb it gently and curl it around one inch pieces of drinking straws. Hold the hair onto the straw with a bobby pin. Dry overnight.
When you remove the "curlers" gently comb the hair with a hairpin or a wide tooth wire comb or brush. You will pull out quite a bit of hair this is okay, because if you used the entire yard on the doll she probably has "big" hair anyway. You will only loose the loose strands, It seems like a lot, but it really is not.
I save the stuff I comb out. When I do a "upswept" hairdo or a chignon or a French twist I use it as a filler. or I make a "rat" for another hairstyle for another doll.
A wefted hairstyle can be combed and styled from time to time, a non-wefted hairstyle cannot.