This afternoon, I hand over to the legendary French Hair Stylist, Severin Hubert, of Hepburn Collection, to talk about the marcel wave – one of my favourite 1920's inspired wedding day looks ever, yet one of the most difficult looks to achieve…

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The Marcel Wave is a stylish wave given to the hair by means of heated curling irons and was hugely popular in the 1920s and 1930s. I, like others, was taught this method by shaping and setting the curls with your comb and fingers. Although it's not the easiest of styles to achieve, it's one of the most rewarding and I love it when a bride is looking for this kind of inspiration.

A bob style haircut is best for this look but it can be achieved on shorter (coined `a la garcon by the French) or longer hair too. For longer hair you would create larger waves in the style of Maureen O' Sullivan or Rita Hayworth.

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – Photography Copyright (c) 2011, Devlin Photos 

Marcel Wave

Severin Hubert, founder of Hepburn Collection’s working on the look above, at the 'The Big Fat Bloggers Photoshoot'. Severin used traditional methods to curl my hair before he styled it into a marcel wave…

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – Photography Copyright (c) 2011, Devlin Photos

Pin curls

Marcel wave

Marcel wave

Another favourite style of mine is the Pin Curl which was also popular in the 1920s. This look is achieved by curling a piece of hair up with their fingers and pinning it flat to their heads with bobby pins or pins that were made especially for this purpose. Pin Curls regained popularity in the 1940s, with a slight variation on the method. Instead of setting the curl flat on their head, an elevated pin curl was used, which resulted in more volume and a tousled look…

Love My Dress Wedding Blog, Left Image Source, Right Image Source

The Marcel Wave... The Marcel Wave...

In today's world of weddings, brides are inspired by almost anything which makes our job very exciting. It's not always the dress that inspires a chosen hair style, we often style brides who have been inspired by a movie, theme or even a venue.

Many old Hollywood starlets such as Marlene Dietrich, Bette Davis, Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford and many more helped to make the Pin Curl and  Marcel Wave look glamorous.In today's world of weddings, brides are inspired by almost anything which makes our job very exciting.

Marlene Dietrich, Image source, and Bette Davis, Image Source

Marlene Dietrich... Bette Davis...

It's not always the dress that inspires a chosen hair style, we often style brides who have been inspired by a movie, theme or even a venue.  Examples of venues that would be very fitting for a 1920s/30s wedding would be those that feature an Art Deco style such as Eltham Palace, Andaz Hotel or Claridges. Oozing glamour, these venues complement a vintage theme.

The gown styles that work well with this look include beautiful slinky dresses in silk or embellished with a cluster of beads and pearls. All over lace gowns also look timeless and one shoulder or slinky straps are perfect to showcase the hair. A vintage headband or brooch completes the look.  Think Jenny Packham, and Temperley.

We've been so lucky to work with brides who have requested this look, having been inspired by a movie or because they have chosen a vintage theme for their wedding day.

In the image below, the bride held her wedding at The Andaz and was a huge fan of the films Atonement & A Very Long Engagement. She wanted a wedding day look that reflected this style…

Love My Dress Wedding Bog – Image Copyright (c) 2010, The London Photography

The Marcel Wave...

In the image below, the bride wanted us to combine a Marcel wave with the hair pulled to the side. We opted for a sophisticated bun and the overall look was beautiful…

Love My Dress Wedding Bog – Image Copyright (c) 2010, Mason Photography

The Marcel Wave...

Our Bride below loved the actresses Marlene Dietrich/Rita Hayworth so we created a little of both using the Pin Curls method…

The Marcel Wave...

The Marcel Wave...

The image below is Severin working a marcel wave on me at the Love My Dress Summer Soiree

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – All Photography on this page, Copyright (c) 2011, Katy Lunsford

Marcel Wave Marcel Wave

….and the image below is a subtle marcel wave Severin styled on me for my shoot with Polly Alexandre…

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – All Photography on this page, Copyright (c) 2011, Polly Alexandre

Marcel wave Marcel wave

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Thanks so much Severin for sharing your knowledge and expertise!

For further information on Severin Hubert, visit the Hepburn Collection website.

And take a peek at these beautiful 1920's/Art Deco Bridal inspiration boards for wedding day looks that compliment the marcel wave…

Much love,

Annabel xXx

Leave a Comment!

12 thoughts on Marcel Waves & Pin Curls ~ Wedding Day Hair Styles Inspired by the Past…

  1. My favourite ‘vintage do’ is a Veronica Lake ‘peek a boo’ with some hair swept back and a section of the fringe hiding one eye. It looks great with a small clip, headpiece or fascinator ‘on the side’.

  2. I adore these styles so much…..one of my favourite films is Henry and June, and the hairstyles in that are just gorgeous….Paris in the ’20s, Uma Thurman as June Miller and Maria de Medeiros as Anais Nin…. low chignons with marcel waved front,style heaven!
    I love Severin’s work…true artistry!

  3. That’s for your comments ladies, it’s great to read your feedback – Jo, you have inspired me to lose myself in some old movies this Christmas holiday :)
    I’m meeting Sev early next year and can’t wait! {he’s styling my hair!! Can’t tell you anymore than that for now!} ;)
    Much love,
    Annabel xXx

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