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Rooting Tutorial

Debbie Henshaw’s Basic (VERY BASIC!) Directional Rooting Instructions

It’s pretty basic and the pictures are awful but maybe you can gain something from it!

Hi again! You are a brave soul to take on this directional rooting basics tutorial! One should not try doing a tutorial on her own with no one to take pictures! LOL But, I gave it my fair shot for the day. Maybe some day I will add to it.

Ever struggle with knowing where to put the hairline on your baby? Here is a real easy guideline to help. Now, it’s just a guideline. You can change it up and make it your own depending on the overall look you want for your reborn.

With your index finger and thumb, measure the distance between the chin and the nose. This is your basic measurement. With that measurement, measure from the nose to the forehead. This is BASICALLY where you want your bang line to be. For boys you can move it back a little bit. For girls, forward a bit. Mark this spot with a pencil.

Now take that same measurement and measure from the ears to the side of the head~staight up. Mark this place and draw in your hair line if you would like it as a guide.

From the forehead mark, measure two lengths to the crown. At this point, I like to root just a bit of hair into the crown to help me keep working towards that place when I start rooting from the front of the head.

I prefer to begin my rooting at the side of the head. It does not matter if you start at the bang line or the side. The important thing is that you work from the front of the head to the crown and that you keep you needle at a 45 degree angle to the head, pushing it in until the taper of the needle begins.
I root down the side of the head, not from the front. This helps the hair lay flat and is the direction that baby’s hair grows. I trim as I go with a razor comb or scissors depending on the finished look that you want to achieve. For newborns and most boys, I use the razor comb to trim.

Be sure to keep the lock of hair you are working with combed out and thin. I comb the hair after each session of poking as this removes the hairs that were broken during that session.

Continue working from the front to the crown. Notice the pencil marks that I made on the head? Those are to show the direction that the hair would grow from the crown. All babies are different but this is the direction of growth for this particular doll. So my goal will be to work towads that crown in that direction in my rooting pattern.

I did not take any pictures of the back as I worked but I do have finished pictures of the hair from this doll. Basically, you just continue to root at that 45 degree angle all the way around the head, keeping the butt of your needle pointing away from the crown as you round the back of the head. In other words, the point of the needle will always be poking towards the crown.
When I am done rooting and cutting the hair, I find it VERY important to wash the hair in warm~not hot~ water with a conditioning shampoo. While the shampoo is on the scrubbed hair, use a pick to pick through it. You will pull hairs out~this is the goal! If you rooted deep enough, this process will only remove extra hairs. When you are done “picking” then go over it with a baby comb and rinse it. Apply conditioner and do the same thing. This really “preens” your dolls head taking out any plugs you might have had. Apply a leave in conditioner and style your dolls hair. Be sure the inside of the head is dry before you seal the hair. I used a 40 gage needle on this doll and it took me about 10 hours to root him.

Here are the pictures of the finished baby doll. (see pictures of him facing front ways above in the Ethic tutorial section)