View Full Version : Online Museum: Hair Combs Collection On View-website Info

heidi w.
July 31st, 2010, 11:10 AM
I did not ask the moderators if I can post this first because there is nothing for sale on this site. In fact, it's a tutorial really. Also, I am not advocating the purchase of anything.

I know there are a few folks here that are interested in antique hair combs (celluloid, french ivory (a form of celluloid), lucite, and the rare bakelite (very rare) and even African and Asian combs.....More novice collectors may be familiar with the plastic combs, yet this collection (as does my collection) includes metals such as silver and bronze and gold, horn, tortoiseshell, ivory, and various types of woods and bone (cow, for example). This museum collection spans many decades, several periods (such as art nouveau period and the works of Auguste Bonaz), even 1960 plastic combs... and so on. It's very impressive! And for any collectors may open up windows for ideas of additions or new discoveries to add to one's collection. (For example, I've personally done a little trajectory off the main path of folding and purse combs.) Those of you interested in jewelry, in costume history, in hair history will likely enjoy this. There's something for everyone, men and women alike. IF you're an artist, particularly designing jewelry or iron work of various metals, you'll definitely have some sparks fly once viewing these images and hearing (Wingbeat) the narrative.

Those not in the know, I'm a somewhat avid collector although I've greatly toned down my progress since purchasing a house.

Anyway, recently I learned about a fabulous online museum that pictures and 'teaches' about hair combs. This website is intended as an online museum and tutorial of sorts. It's run by a woman who possesses a fabulous collection in France, and I know of her through the comb club I participate in. Her website is free, one does not even need to register to view.

The language is offered in English and French (upper right click at home page).

It may take a while to load/access depending on your computer setup, but the images are high quality, showing detail, and plenty of explanation. Once running, there's an option for full screen image, (Wingbeat) which I recommend.

Apparently the 'exhibits' will change, and I did notice dates of a given collection shown discreetly.

She tends to organize a given collection of combs thematically, such as Wingbeat which features combs that have the theme of birds or wings. Coming soon she'll be loading her Asian combs, and a collection that features Janus (Facing Me/Facing You).

Her combs have been on view in a number of museums in France. This stuff is the cream of the crop.

Turn up the speakers (this is not a read-heavy website thing)
It seems some areas, such as he Wingbeat exhibit scrolls through on its own with a voiceover, whereas the African comb or other collections currently showing are view the images and read the one line of description. The website announces over 2,500 combs will be viewable via this exhibit.

I hope you enjoy! Even if you're not a collector, this stuff is fabulous and another aspect of long hair history.

heidi w.

July 31st, 2010, 03:10 PM
Thank you, I find this sort of thing to be fascinating! Now I'm going to look around that site some more.

July 31st, 2010, 04:17 PM
Thank you Heidi W:cheese: for the link a lot of those combs are absolutely gorgeous.:D

August 1st, 2010, 12:33 AM
Ooh, combs, forks, sticks, and tiaras! Heidi, thank you so much for sharing the museum link. There is an amazing variety to the collection. It makes the unadorned hair we see around us all the time seem pretty dull in comparison to what these showy pieces must have looked like in fancy styles.

August 1st, 2010, 01:40 AM
Oh there were quite a few pretties :)

August 1st, 2010, 04:17 AM
Thank you for sharing the link, it really is an amazing site :D

August 1st, 2010, 04:31 AM
Wow I'm in love with these

August 1st, 2010, 03:35 PM
Yes, this is an absolutely amazing exhibit!! Thank you so much for posting the link!

August 1st, 2010, 05:15 PM
Very interesting to see! Thanks for posting the link! :)

heidi w.
August 3rd, 2010, 05:13 PM
Glad to see a few of you had a looksee.

For my part, I had to wipe up the drool, and pick up my jaw from my kneecaps. hee-hee.


This goes in the Dare To Dream category.

Yes, Countess DeJaeger, I found some nice CDVs on eBay that sport images of women in days of yore with hair combs, but alas, it's hard to afford these documents too. (Honestly, a lot of women in those days also used fake hair!)

On a similar note, I was a bad girl and bought another comb. A lovely art deco comb. It'll be here in a bit. It's coming from the UK. It's a french ivory comb, about 6 inches in length, with a nice oval zonage of black celluloid, set against the backdrop of a swatch of white celluloid.....I'll snap a photo when it arrives.

[she strums her fingers impatiently on the table while her chin rests in the other palm looking upwards into the dreamy wild wild blue]

heidi w.

August 3rd, 2010, 11:17 PM
This was simply amazing. Thank you so much for the link Heidi! I would kill to have some of those, wow. :thud:

August 3rd, 2010, 11:49 PM
Beauties! Thanks for sharing! I just wish they dated them on the site.

heidi w.
August 7th, 2010, 12:41 PM
Beauties! Thanks for sharing! I just wish they dated them on the site.

I agree with you. The portion that I saw that has a narrator, there were some comments in narrative as to approximate timeframe of creation.

Some, if you know about hair combs, you can tell by design the era it was created in by materials, design form...that kind of thing.

I know this site is oriented more for officionado collectors, and less so for the novice.

So there's an assumption of the majority of viewers, and audience they're speaking to.

heidi w.

August 7th, 2010, 06:03 PM
Thanks for the info' , Heidi. Very interesting source. As you know I collect artefacts like this and this is very useful.