TUTORIAL: 1960s Bouffant Paper Wig

Introduction: TUTORIAL: 1960s Bouffant Paper Wig

What woman didn’t want to have a bouffant hairstyle in the 1950s or 1960s? Today, I bring you another famous Betty paper wig tutorial. We’re going for a presidential look or rather a first lady look with none other than Betty Ford (Elizabeth Ann Bloomer).

Betty Bloomer was born in Chicago, but grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She studied dance and modeled on the side, and eventually married Gerald Ford, who of course was our 38th President of the United States under some difficult circumstances. Other famous first ladies, like Jackie Kennedy and Lady Bird Johnson, wore the the bouffant hairstyle well, which goes to show you that sometimes bigger is better.

(NOTE: I've got a few images on Instructables, but to see the full original version, you can head over to Hometown Betty for the full post with images.)

yellow raffia ribbon (Michaels for about $4)


double sided tape

masking tape

2 or more plastic grocery bags

paper (to crumple for bouffant height to hair)

head bust (optional, but highly recommended)

photo of a 1960s bouffant hairstyle (available on Google images)

Step 1: Cut Plastic Grocery Bag Into a Large Square.

You’ll need this to create the base for your wig.

Step 2: Using Masking Tape, Create a Headpiece That Fits Your Head Shape and Size.

Choose your favorite image, and use that as your inspirational piece.

Take long strips of masking tape, and wrap it around beginning at the forehead, the ears, and back of the head at the nape of your neck. Keep adding more strips of masking tape, so that the plastic bag begins to take the shape of your head.

Step 3: Add Another Layer of Plastic Over Your Headpiece.

This is important to add the height needed for a true bouffant style. Use crumpled paper to keep the shape of the teased/heightened hair look, add another plastic sheet (cut from another grocery bag) and tape it over the headpiece.

Cut extra/left over plastic piece from the forehead.

(To see additional images see the original post here.)

Step 4: Create Bouffant Hairstyle.

This is the fun part. Using lots of double sided tape, I cut raffia ribbon to create a short hair back. This will be the first layer of hair. Using strips of raffia ribbon, I added a headband look at the front of the hairline.

Then I added more raffia ribbon from under the headpiece with masking tape. Make sure that the curl of the ribbon goes along the shape of the head. This is the wavy front and sides of the hairstyle. Add more strips of raffia ribbon under the base of the headpiece to style your bouffant headpiece.

Step 5: Voila! Project Complete!

Add more raffia ribbon to the top and back to add more height to the hair. I also added another layer of raffia ribbon to the top and back to cover the headpiece bottom (plastic grocery bag) from showing through. You can control the hairstyle with double sided tape – just experiment until you have your look.

And voila, your 1960s bouffant paper wig is done!

Enjoy more fun creative tutorials at Hometown Betty. Thanks for stopping by!

Other fun tutorials:

TUTORIAL: Betty Boop Paper Wig

TUTORIAL: Mozart-Inspired Paper Wig

TUTORIAL: Betty Grable Paper Wig

From my hometown to yours,


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    Oops, I meant to say that I'll update a post with photographs of me wearing those wigs.


    Hi Taylor, Thanks for checking out my tutorial! I am working on my final analogue photography project this month and next. When it's up on the blog, I'll update the post. =)

    Taylor Ellis
    Taylor Ellis

    7 years ago

    Amazing work! I would love to see what they look like on someone