The Art and Sacred Act of Wearing My Head Wrapped
Written By: Yendys Nefer-Atum
For many, many years, I have enjoyed wearing head wraps. This head covering was also known in the seventies and by other cultures as a turban. I selectively gathered and cherished a vast array of beautiful, fabrics with which I have elaborately adorned my crown.
My choice of head wraps has been quite creative at times. I sometimes used lengths anywhere from two yards of fabric to wrapping my head and my body together in a six-foot piece of cloth artistry. I even got fancy and layered colors and textures, according to my mood. When not being used, I stored my head wraps in special boxes and baskets.
My eclectic choices have been from authentic, African fabrics to antique, lace curtains, unique table clothes, exotic, crinkled skirts, brightly colored scarves and several other special pieces which I have collected from my favorite thrift shops. I only wrapped my head with cotton gauze or crochet materials. These fabrics are lighter, so they allow the air to circulate in and around my hair and scalp.
I definitely notice a difference in the way I feel about myself when I cover my head. I identified with the ancient queens of Africa. The reflection that looks back at me when my head is covered re-connects me over and over again with my higher self and a greater purpose. It re-focuses my reason for being. I also treasure the positive responses I attract while wearing a head wrap. I have noticed that my energy level shifts, depending on the colors I choose to cover my head with. I very seldom cover my head with black cloth. I have learned that the high vibration of bright, bold colors work best to give me the energy I need for an active day. Color therapy is a real science, especially when it’s covering ones head, so be mindful.
Last summer, I suddenly had to switch to wearing only cool shades of blue, green, pink and white. I realized that the fiery colors of summer; red, orange and yellow had become too over stimulating for me since I started taking dance classes. While wearing white and soft, pastel, colored fabrics kept my locs, my head, my mind, body and spirit cool and at peace. This adjustment allowed me the focus and clarity that I needed to comfortably get through the summer. My creativity was heighted and meditation came a lot easier.
When I first locked my hair, my head wrap was a very sacred part of my daily attire. Covering my head was a ritual for me and it was also a way of shielding me from unwanted energy. Adorning my head with beautiful fabric was also a practical way for me to keep atmospheric pollutants out of my newly coiled antennas. I somehow knew deep within me, without being told, that covering my head was a way of protecting the most sacred part of me and that symbolically, this humble act was a way in which I could have reverence for my ancestors and honor the Divine Spirit.
I have practiced my sacred ritual of wrapping my head for such a long time. Lately, when I wear my locs uncovered, I have surprised a few people, who have never seen me without my head being covered. I know they are probably a lot more.
In my travels, people from different cultures have approached me to admire the regal creation on my head and the beauty which I emanated. They told me that this practice that I wore with such pride, reminded them of their country. Some of them have loving shared instructions with me on how wrap the different styles of head wraps that are worn in their homeland and the significance of some styles.
How to wrap your head:
My designs have all been really a constant act trail and error. You may fumble and stumble for hours, but eventually you will succeed. The more I practiced with an open, imaginative mind, the better I became at wrapping my head.
I also looked at pictures in magazines or where ever I could find them. I suggest that you do the same. You have to become familiar with your own inner sense of beautiful womanhood and translate that feeling outward.
Start by practicing with two yards of cotton gauze fabric at first. This fabric is very soft and easier to manipulate.
Now, fold you fabric length-wise, hold the material open at the back of your head. Allow your hands to hold the right side piece longer than the left side piece of cloth.
Holding your fabric outward and tight, bring your left hand around to your forehead. Using your right hand, bring your fabric around and around.
Ease your left hand out from under the fabric at the moment when your hands cross at your forehead, while you are still holding the fabric tight.
When you get to the end of your fabric, find a place to discreetly tuck the end of the cloth into. Now, creatively arrange the folds and pleats in a fashionable coif (cover) until it resembles the image you were aiming for.
Head wrapping is an art form; so practice, practice and more practice and I promise you that with time, perseverance and your own unique sense of style, the art and sacred act of head wrapping makes a beautiful you!
Loc Initiation, Maintenance,Twists, Natural Hair & Body Products, Sacred Jewelry, Crochet Hats, Bags & Consultations…
The Cowrie Shell Center
1166 Dean Street Garden Apt.
Brooklyn, NY 11216