African butterfly hair combs are designed to lock and hold buns neatly in place using elasticated crisscrosses of beads. The design is simple and can be replicated with the right tools and some patience. The trickiest part is drilling the holes into the edges of the combs. To get the holes and spacing right, practice on some cheap combs first. Also, make sure the beads you choose can easily thread onto the elastic cording.
Drill six holes along the edge of each comb. The holes should be in pairs. Place a pair of holes at each corner/end of the comb and a pair in the centre of the comb's edge. The holes should match up on each of the combs.
Interlock the combs as they would be when clipped together in your hair. For reference points, place the combs on their sides, so that one comb is on top of the other and the holes make two parallel, horizontal rows.
Thread a piece of elastic through the first hole, along one corner end of the top comb, and knot the thread on the back side. Apply a little craft glue to the knot to secure it. Slip beads onto the elastic until they reach the same hole on the opposite (bottom) comb. Thread the elastic through this hole, knot and glue. Make an identical connection on the opposite side of the comb duo.
Construct elastic Xs with the remaining holes. Thread, knot and glue elastic through the second hole on the top comb. This time, add enough beads so that the elastic reaches to the third hole (skipping the second) to make the connection. To complete the X, make another connection from the third hole on top to the second hole on bottom. Do the same with the fourth and fifth holes, constructing a second X across the combs.
Things you need
- 2 interlocking hair combs
- Elastic cord
- Craft glue
- 1/8 inch drill bit