by Cynthia du Pré Argent
© 2000 Cynthia Virtue
You've probably arrived here via the page on how
to keep your veil on. This is a photo essay on the dreaded
effect, which is obtained by trying to keep a veil on solely by the
of a circlet (or ribbon) crammed onto the head. Think of the
of a large muffin whose top has overflowed the muffin-paper, because
the veil has gotten too loose.
I have recently been told that
there are people now using the term "muffin-head" as a perjorative in
the SCA. Shame on you, if you're one of them. Offer to work
with the person in question to get a smoother look, don't snark!
Over the course of an hour or more, if the veil is not attached to
the head somehow, the circlet will tend to shift around and up,
bringing the veil with it. One then tends to pull the circlet or
ribbon down harder, and when the tension relaxes again, you get even
veil above the circlet than before. Fairly soon you have a lot of
fluffs of veil above the circlet, or your circlet or ribbon is crammed
so low on your brow that it's resting on your eyebrows.
If you try and tie your veil on tighter, you'll probably get a red
line across your forehead, and possibly a headache. I know a few
people who have figured out a way to prevent this by tying their ribbon
or cord right above their eyebrows, and around in back to the bulge
above the neck. In this maneuver, the
tightness of the veil conforms to the skull, so that you get an
excessively rounded shape above the ribbon. (It should be noted
that the lady in red in the medieval illustration has on some sort of
caul or wrapped veil; that's not the outline of her head you're seeing
at the back. It might be like the all-over caul/nets on my Cauls page.)
Men, and women without veils, can get muffin-head with just a
and their hair. And it really snarls your hair up. The
is fairly easy: periodically take your circlet off and smooth down
I should mention that there are a few lucky souls who do not tend to
get muffin head. I can only assume it is due to some unique
property of their hair. If you're not one of the lucky few, you
should use fabric bands or the alternatives listed on the bands page.
|Muffin-head, mild version
Note how the veil above the ribbon has started to pouf up and out; it's not a smooth drape; it's getting a mind of its own.
|Muffin-head, after several hours
On the left, the effect with a stiffer veil -- it stands upright; on the right, the full muffin-top effect with a less stiff veil.
Don't let muffin-head happen to you! Use bands!
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