Victorian Era Hairstyles

This photograph of a woman from the Victorian era is the first one I’ve come across were is sitter has a short hairstyle. I know the ‘Victorian era’ covers roughly a 100 year time span and that there were a wide variety of hairstyles within that time but I think it was very unusual for a woman to have short hair then.

There was a trend during that time to have shorter hair at the front, with most of the hair was pulled back in a bun — but this woman seems to have a genuinely short hairstyle. Many woman had their hair so severely damaged by hot curling irons that it either broke off or it was so damaged it had to be cut — so perhaps that is what happened here.

Also, I’ve read that some working class women in Victorian times kept their hair short but her outfit looks quite expensive so I don’t thinkĀ  she looks poor — though you never can tell (she may have been a talented seamstress, who made her own clothes). Her top looks mostly lovely — but not so much the cuffs.

The woman’s name was Lina Bird, the photographer Alvan S Harper and the source here.

Smiling Victorians

Most photographs of Victorians show the sitters looking very serious and sombre but there’s a bit of a trend just now for publishing photographs of smiling Victorians. When you first see an image of someone of that period with a great big cheesy grin on their face it’s a bit of a jolt to pre-concieved notions but it’s lovely to see and goes a long way to break down the separation between the past and the present.

I particularly like this one because the woman looks quite cheeky and confident.