The natural hair community came together to show off the beauty of head wraps.
By Megan Reed
The natural hair community in Los Angeles is “getting bigger and stronger,” according to Fatima Dodson, owner of Runway Boutique in the Miracle Mile area. One garment that is associated with the natural hair movement is the head wrap, which is also known as “goddess wraps.”
“A lot of people see (neo-soul singers) Erykah Badu and India Arie wearing it,” Dodson said. “When a lot of women put it on, they say that they feel like a queen.”
With the different textiles and colors, these wearable-art pieces are unique and can make a bold statement. Dodson said that many people were intrigued when she would wear one.
“I wear a lot of head wraps, and a lot of people would ask me how I do it,” she said. “They were fascinated about how I wore the head wrap.”
Dodson received so much attention from her head wraps that she decided to sell them in her store, and she hosts natural hair events where she teaches women how to put them on.
“The next question that I got asked was, ‘Now I have this head wrap, where do I wear it to? Can I wear it to work, can I wear it out in the evening to dinner, can I wear it just on a Saturday?’ It made me realize that there was a need to create an event where people could come and feel comfortable wearing the head wrap, where they could come and learn the history of head wraps, and just be surrounded by like-minded individuals who have this fascination and desire to wear head wraps,” she said.
Dodson partnered with Amtu-Michelle Johnson, who created A Map to You, which is an organizations that supports emerging artists, to create Head Wraps in the Park Market Festival, which was held last month at Grand Park in downtown.
This is one of the most celebrated natural hair events in Los Angeles. With City Hall as the backdrop, around 2,000 woman wore their head wraps and stopped by vendor booths to purchase new ones.
Head wrapping can be an art form, so this event featured a workshop on how to properly put the garment on.
“It looks very intimidating,” Dodson said. “It looks very hard. So that’s what I teach inside my store. Once people see it, they’re like, ‘Oh my God, that’s it, that’s how you do it.’ I created the workshop so that people can come and learn it for themselves.”
Outside of this event, Dodson has showcased head wraps at Afrolicious Hair & Beauty Expo (November 5 at the Los Angeles Convention Center) and she has partnered with Nappywood, which is a community empowerment movement of natural hair and wellness. She has also conducted workshops at the Afro Music Festival.
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