At the start of the 19th century, women began to shed the powdered wigs that were popular in the Georgian era and allowed their own hair to be the center of attention. The updos started out simple, in tight buns decorated with ornamental combs, but by the middle of the century more varied styles began to come into play. Young girls adorned long drop curls, while their older sisters, aunts and mothers donned chignons enhanced by two drop curls hanging by their ears. Women began decorating their hair with fresh flowers to emulate the Austrian empress Elizabeth, and crimping was invented. By the end of the 1880s, women began to prefer a more natural look, and allowed their hair to fall freely down their backs.
Part your hair down the center, from the forehead to the nape of the neck.
From the center part, about four to five inches back from your forehead, create two more parts that run parallel to your face. This will give you two strands of hair hanging down just in front of your ears, and two thicker strands of hair in the back of your head (akin to what you would use to create pigtails).
Brush the back section of hair into a ponytail, and braid it. Secure with a clear elastic band.
Twist the braid into a bun right at the crown of the head. Use bobby pins to secure the bun.
Braid the front strands of hair into two separate braids, making sure to pull the hair back behind your ear before you begin braiding. Use bobby pins to connect these side braids to the base of the braided bun.
If your hair is long enough that the side braids do not tuck into the bun right away, wrap the two side braids around one another and loop them around the bun in any fashion you desire. Secure the ends of the side braids into the bun.
Wet any loose wisps of hair on the back of your neck, and use your fingers to shape them into loose curls.
Add flowers, decorative combs, or even a string of pearls or scarves for a more ornamental look.