Diploma of Honour, Paris Exhibition; Coiffeur by Appointment to H.m. the Queen.

Hairdressing for presentation at Court is always a problem - a very serious problem - to those ladies who are privileged to be presented to their King and Queen.

On such an occasion every woman naturally desires to look her best. But ladies seem to feel that the general "strangeness" of the whole proceeding, and the peculiarities of their dress - train, bouquet, feathers, and veil - demand a total change from their ordinary appearance.

A Common Mistake

When a girl knows she is to be presented her first thought seems to be, "How can I alter my hair for the occasion?" The knowledge that three white feathers and a white tulle veil of regulation length must be fixed to her head imbues her with a desire for change. Not one girl in ten, on being presented, thinks that her ordinary coiffure, with additions, is the right thing. Consequently, ladies are often seen at Court with their hair obviously dressed for the occasion in a way it has never been before - stiff, hard, and unbecoming. Now, all this is a great mistake.

To look her best, a woman wants to feel natural; and a brand new style of coiffure induces self-consciousness more quickly than anything else. Because feathers and a veil have to be added, is it any reason that the whole style of hairdressing should be radically changed? By no means. Certain regulations have to be observed as to the length and position of the feathers and veil; but, that apart, there is no reason why an everyday and becoming coiffure cannot be used for presentation purposes with complete success. Softness is the great thing in hairdressing for such a function. The effect is seen principally from a distance, and any hard lines are doubly hard when viewed from afar.

In dressing the hair for presentation at Court, two important factors should always be remembered. First, that the front of the hair is the most important part, since the back is almost hidden by the veil. Secondly, that outline counts for a great deal. Care should be taken to make the front dressing as soft and becoming as possible; and the waving plumes, drooping over softly waved hair, give a charmingly youthful effect. Elaborate detail at the back of the head is quite wasted; but the outline of the dressing is most important, as it shows clearly through the folds of the veil. The present tendency towards Greek effects in back dressing is particularly applicable to Court coiffures, for a protruding knot of curls or puffs looks very attractive under a veil.

The Customary Plumes

Regulations with regard to feathers have changed recently, and are much more strictly enforced than at one time. Three plumes must be worn, of regulation length, in pure white. The centre feather is rather longer than those on either side, which are identical in length. It was customary for the feathers to be inserted in the hair at the centre of the back, and allowed to droop forward or to the side in the natural manner. The new regulations decree that the feathers are inserted in the same place, but, when fixed, they are all inclined towards the left, tilting slightly over the left side of the head. The veil is fixed in the ordinary way below the feathers, and, when secured, is lifted into loose folds over the back dressing, and fixed with fine hairpins at a becoming angle. Presentation feathers and veils of regulation size and length can be obtained from any good draper or. dressmaking establishment, and are also supplied by some hairdressers. It is part of a qualified hairdresser's art to know exactly how to fix presentation feathers and veil at the correct angle.

Fig. 1. A graceful Court coiffure in Pompadour style. Care has been taken to make the front dressing as soft and becoming as possible.

Fig. 1. A graceful Court coiffure in Pompadour style. Care has been taken to make the front dressing as soft and becoming as possible.

The combination of plumes and waved locks produces a charmingly youthful effect Designs by David Nicol, 50, Haymarket, S.w.

While feathers were allowed to follow more or less natural inclinations, and fall forward or sideways, many ladies could have turned them to the right or left, and been merely dubbed eccentric or desirous of doing something out of the common in order to suit their particular style. But to-day any lady appearing at Buckingham Palace without her three feathers tilted towards the left is courteously sent back to repair the omission before entering the Throne Room! So let all ladies be warned in time, and remember that regulations are made to be kept, and that the three feathers must incline, in a bunch, to the left.

Presentation hairdressing is most becoming, unless combined with a stiff, alien style which is obviously new to the wearer. A few years ago, when high styles in hair-dressing were fashionable, it was customary to build the hair up in front at right angles to the head, and to draw it straight up at the back in a very chic manner, showing clearly the shape of the back of the head and the sides. The plumes and veil, falling softly over the raised hair in front, and plain outline at the back, proved very becoming. Nowadays, it is the mode to show as much of the shape of the head as possible, especially on the top. The back is more hidden by padded curls or coils, but the fashion for tightly swathed bands, coils, and plaits has brought back the decided outline of the head at its prettiest part. Court hairdressing was always smart, but never more so than at the moment, for modern fascinating styles are well suited to veils and feathers, which lend softness to the grace of a good outline.

Court hairdressing can be combined with every type of arrangement of the front hair, as I have endeavoured to prove in choosing the illustrations for this article. It lends itself to a Pompadour, as seen in Fig. 1, or to a side parting, with which it looks particularly chic, as seen in Fig. 2; or to a centre parting, in conjunction with one of the small fringes so popular at the moment, as seen in

Fig. 3.

Fig. 1. Pompadour Style. The hair needs well waving for this style, either on pins or in Marcel fashion. If on pins, the front and side hair should be divided into eight or ten strands, and each one placed on a pin for waving. The foundation should be tied on the crown of the head, not lower, as any dressing very low in the neck, worn in conjunction with feathers, is apt to produce an overweighted and elongated appearance. The best model to bear in mind - unless using a dressing that lies flat against the head - is the angle of Greek curls. French comb the front hair carefully, and arrange it in a soft Pompadour roll, drawing it downwards over the forehead with the fingers, in order to avoid any hardness of line. No pad is needed in this style; and having arranged the front with special care, it only remains to form the foundation tail into about six loose, light puffs.

If any additional hair is used, an interlaced coil would be very effective, twisted between the puffs; but the dressing is quite pretty without it. Lastly, the feathers are inserted at the top of the bunch of puffs, and inclined gently to the left; then the veil and the coiffure is complete. If a tiara is worn, it is most easily attached to a Pompadour style. Fig. 2. Side Parting. A side parting is extremely smart at all times, and proves remarkably effective for Court wear, more especially for ladies who are not debutantes. As the feathers must droop to the left, it is good to make the parting on the left side; but if a lady usually wears her hair parted on the right the dressing proves equally pleasing, as the illustration, showing the parting on the right, proves. This dressing is illustrated lifted rather high at one side, but it can be left flat if preferred. Having waved the hair and tied the foundation tail, French comb the front and side strands, and arrange them at the angle most becoming. On this style a flat back dressing would look particularly well, and for this purpose I should suggest a waved chignon. No false switches are needed for this, but the back hair must be waved and lifted over a pad with a hole at the bottom. In this case, the foundation must be tied rather near the neck. An absolutely flat swathe can then be added, and looks charming in conjunction with feathers and veil, demonstrating the adaptability of the newest styles to Court wear.

one side. The regulation feathers must droop towards the left, and therefore

Fig. 2. If a side parting is preferred, the dressing may be liftedrather high at the parting can be made on that side, if this be thought desirable

Fig. 2. If a side parting is preferred, the dressing may be liftedrather high at the parting can be made on that side, if this be thought desirable

Fig. 3. Centre Parting, with Fringe. This style is rather more severe than the others, and is shown with a tiny V fringe in the centre of the forehead. A fringe, by the way, can be worn with either of the styles previously described. This particular dressing demands the severity of Marcel waving, and the hair should be left rather wide in the front. The foundation is tied in the same place as for the Pompadour mode, but instead of being made into loose puffs is twisted into a large figure of eight. This "eight" will look better under a veil if made over a moderate-sized pad. The hair must be left fairly loose below it, to give softness to the outline, which would otherwise be very severe. The "eight" can be left without further ornamentation if desired ; or a coil may be placed loosely round it, and secured with shell pins.

being more severe than those previously described demands Marcel

Fig. 3. A coiffure with centre parting and a fringe. This style waving. The hair should be left rather wide in front

Fig. 3. A coiffure with centre parting and a fringe. This style waving. The hair should be left rather wide in front

This article proves, I hope, that ladies can adapt their everyday coiffure to Court use; and I can only beg them not to be persuaded to appear at Court with their tresses arranged in some strange manner, for they will only look and feel ill at ease. It is best to go to a hairdresser for Court dressing, and if a lady knows one who may not be very sure of Court styles, but who understands her needs, she has only to give him a few hints - and remember about the feathers - and then all will be well.