Happy Monday my friends!
I hope you had a fabulous weekend.
, I spent Saturday tackling a DIY project that has been on my mind for months. African headdresses, also known as Juju Hats, have become fairly popular in interior design. If you follow me on
, you have probably noticed them popping up more than once. I love how they add texture to a room and I have been lusting after one for our living room.
However, I have always been a bit discouraged by their price tag. In stores, they usually run over $500. Even in New York City flea markets, they are several hundred dollars.
As I considered purchasing one, a part of me know I could make my own. I researched feathers online, but ultimately decided that it would be better to buy them in person. I headed to the garment district, where my online research (Yelp) led me to
. They had exactly what I was looking for,
, in dozens of colors.
Most headdresses are made of rooster feathers, but rooster feathers run about $25 per yard. Goose feathers on the other hand, are much less (only $7/yard in store and $10/yard online). My man
in his stores, so I have spent a great deal of time studying them in person. I took this inspiration picture with me to shop.
I thought the
looked close enough and so I bought them. I bought 15 yards because I know myself and I knew I would be really annoyed if I ran out of feathers mid-project. However, I didn't end up using them all. If you'd like to try this project, you would probably be fine with 12 yards.
When I got home. I started getting really thrifty. You see, the good thing about living in New York, is not only do you have access to your own recycling, but you also have access to all of your neighbor's recycling. I have no shame in marching myself downstairs and asking the super for somebody else's cardboard box. Which is exactly what I did.
The thing about DIY projects, is that they can have a significant effect on your mental health. They can result in the thrilling feeling, "I can conquer the world!" or the defeating realization, "Wow. I can't remember basic math." I experienced both emotions during this project.
Most feather headdresses are about 30" wide. After
several failed attempts at calculating the correct diameter, I settled on a circle with an 18" diameter. I used a pencil, some string, and a pen to make my circle. With the length of the feathers, my final headdress is 30" wide.
I didn't have a hot glue gun, but I did have some other kinds of glue leftover from previous DIY projects. I started using those glues, but they were fairly annoying (and didn't dry that quickly). I finished them up and decided to go out and "splurge" on a hot glue gun. Imagine my delight when a hot glue gun and two packs of glue were $17.
I started by gluing the feathers on the outside of the circle and working toward the middle. The feathers curve slightly, so I switched the direction based on what I thought looked best.
When I got to the middle, I left a hole and created a separate centerpiece. I secured the bottom of the centerpiece with hot glue so it was one solid piece. Then, I glued it into the middle of the headdress.
In an attempt to prepare it for hanging, I strung a piece of yarn through the cardboard and secured it with tape before I started adding feathers.
Of course, the minute I lifted the finished mask the string slid out and I realized my great idea was not so great. So, I hot glued the string and called it a day. Like so many of life's questions, hot glue (or duct tape) is often the answer. Now that I have a hot glue gun, I will be using it for almost everything.
All in all, the feathers cost me about $108 and the hot glue gun was $17.
For $125 I got my much awaited and highly coveted feather headdress.