African Headdresses as Art

Welcome back to reality, everyone! Hope you had a relaxing holiday weekend. I was in Miami (which was somehow cooler than NYC!) getting a little R & R. One of my favorite things to do in Miami is go to 125th street in North Miami; it’s a great stretch of about fifteen mid-century modern vintage furniture stores. Many of the stores buy from some of the most high-end estate sales in Palm Beach and Miami where houses are full of goodies. I’ll share some of my Miami finds later in the week, but the best piece was probably a Frances Elkins dining table covered in Capizi shells (so glam!!). One accessory I’m always on the look our for when I go antiquing is Juju hats. The Juju hat is an African headdress made from bird feathers. Found throughout Cameroon in West Africa, the feathers are sewn onto a tight raffia base and covered with wood or cloth. Each hat is painstakingly constructed by a group of up to 4 artisans for about three days. Juju hats are worn by prominent members of the Bamileke tribe as well as dignitaries and Bamileke tribe Juju dancers. Interestingly, Juju hats have become popular among interior designers who use them as wall art. Below, an orange JuJu hat above a bed in House Beautiful magazine. headdressesfeatI found this Juju hat, below, at one of my favorite vintage furniture stores on N 125th Street this weekend. juju5Look at how intricate the design of the feathers is: juju4I think Juju hats look beautiful on their own above a bed or mantle or even as part of a gallery wall. I love the textured, sculptural quality they bring to a space. headdresses1Below, a Juju hat in a little girl’s nursery. baby-juju1

juju3Anyone else loving Juju hats right now?

 

  • Tiffany Leigh

    Absolutely gorgeous! I’d seen these in pictures before, but had no idea they were hats! Love it!

  • http://www.fancyfreeme.com/ Elisa Smith

    Only like my favorite accessory ever! Can you imagine having 3 of those bad boys?!

  • KIM

    I just bought a JUJU hat on ETSY from a store called OLD WORLD SHOPPE.
    I saw these gorgeous feather hats & knew I needed one over my bed in Manhattan.
    eBay had them but having a finished hat with hook to hang on a wall? Priceless.
    My hat arrived today… 30 inches… Ivory & Tan feathers that are amazing!!
    Fyi ~
    I almost paid $600 on some App called HOUZE.
    OLD WORLD wanted $250 with shipping included on Etsy.
    (I don’t work for them &
    I am writing this unsolicited!)
    Anyway…
    I hung it myself today and everyone is going crazy at how stunning it is.
    I myself had to sit down and stare at this feather showpiece on my wall
    above my wrought iron queen sleigh bed.
    You know those moments where you see pictures and wonder if you can
    ever own that yourself??
    That is me today.
    Now I just have to figure out a way to get Outdoor space to use those
    Crate & Barrell catalogues. 😉
    My advice???
    Get a JUJU hat. Throw it on your credit card. You’ll thank me.
    Kim ~