The Evolution of the Sheitel
But while the sheitel-wearing women have popularized the lace front wig, I learned that the technique for it actually was developed long ago -- back in the 1920's. It was not the demand of frum American women -- who still associated sheitels with the old world and old women, as Ruchama Shain points out in All for the Boss -- that was behind the development. The demand was for films. On the stage, actors wore wigs sewn on to bands -- like the falls of today. That worked fine at the distance between actors and audience in the theater but not for the closeups of film. So the lace front wig with its natural-looking hairline was made to help make movie magic. That is one of the interesting things I learned on a trip to the museum of the moving image in Astoria, Queens.