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Subject: Hair


From: Mark Vine <100436.3447>
Date: Wednesday, March 29, 1995
In DistList Instance: 8:76, I wrote

>Can anyone suggest the best method of sticking a thick clump of braided
>human hair, circa 1800's to the inside of a solid gold locket and what
>adhesive might have be used in the 1800's to stick it.
>I had thought to recommend Acryloid B72 since this acrylic adhesive
>should have no effect on the gold but I am concerned that the solvent
>used may effect the hair. I have been asked the above by a jewelry
>restorer, my experience lies with paper artifacts.

I should like to provide some historical background data supplied by the
original enquirer.

   "My interest is in the use of hair as a material from which entire
    pieces of jewellery were constructed. Alberts, guard chains,
    bracelets, earrings, necklaces and brooches were all made of woven,
    plaited or braided hair, usually but not always with gold or
    pinchbeck fittings. The hair was usually stiffened with glue to keep
    its shape, especially when woven into fragile hollow nets

In one instance a flat braided hair band measuring one and a half inches
wide needs to be stuck back onto its original gold clasp. The bond
strength with the metal will need to be quite strong however in view of
the University of Michigan comments that the original glue used to
stiffen the hair could be affected by acetone in Paraloid B72.  Do
contributors still feel a Paraloid based adhesive is suitable.

    **** Moderator's comments: I have nothing to say about B72, but
    would like to stress that it is the policy of this list that,
    barring explicit statements to the contrary, *all* postings are
    presumed to be the personal statements of the posters, not policy
    statements by the institutions those people happen to work for.
    (That is why you never see disclaimers attached to postings, as you
    do on many other lists ["The comments above are not those of my
    employer, blah blah"]). (I'm not really picking on Mark here; I'm
    sure he was speaking casually, but I do want this point clearly
    understood by all and have added this info to the material people
    get when they subscribe (which I'll also add to the web facet of

    The comments about B72 were those of Geoff Brown, *not* the
    University of Michigan.

Mark G. Vine
Conservation Resources, England

                  Conservation DistList Instance 8:80
                 Distributed: Thursday, March 30, 1995
                        Message Id: cdl-8-80-004
Received on Wednesday, 29 March, 1995

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