Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Ventilation - The Art of Knotting Hair

I have had a couple of queries regarding how to learn to ventilate and/or comments from people who remarked that they were struggling to ventilate, so I thought I would post a little help here.

Ventilation is a difficult process to describe accurately solely by words, so I thought I would post the video that I found most helpful when I was learning:

  1. Get a large piece of tulle or wig net instead of lace, a ventilating needle & holder and some hair. Pin a piece of the tulle or wig net to your block SECURELY. Ricky doesn't have his pinned very securely, but then he is a professional so he can get away with this, but if you are learning and your tulle/net is flapping, it makes it just that bit harder as you don't know - at this stage - how to compensate for it.
  2. Practice catching one hair in the needle. It is much easier to learn to ventilate if you focus on one hair.
  3. It's all about the tension! - The way that a knot is formed relies very heavily on the wig maker having the correct tensions between the hair that is held in a loop in one hand and the needle that has caught the hair and is pulling it through in the other hand... if the tension on the needle is not strong enough, you will struggle and end up losing the hair out of the needle.
  4. Don't pull too much! If you pull the hair strand hooked on the needle too far away from the loop in your other hand you will struggle to maintain the correct tension. Keep it small and neat. You need enough hair pulled through but not too much that it becomes loose and falls off the hook. 
Once you have mastered ventilating several rows of single strand hair, you can then progress onto using a piece of lace (which has smaller holes) and practice some rows on there. 


  1. Yes maintaining the correct tension is such a struggle for me, but I'm not going to give up! Thanks for posting this info.

    1. You're welcome. I may post a video about this at some point if I get around to it - it's probably easier to show what I mean sometimes if I do that. Keep practicing and you will get the hang of it.

  2. The video you mention is not visible. I am a wig and hairpiece wearer (every day). I want to start ventilating by first adding hair to my monotop pieces. Any tips on doing that?

    1. I am not sure why you cannot see it as I can see it and others seem able to, so perhaps it would be visible if you go on YouTube and view it? It's called: The Art of Ventilating with Ricky Greenwell. Here's a direct link:

      Ventilating into monofilament is harder than ventilating into lace as you essentially have to make the 'hole' with your needle whereas in lace you have the holes already to insert the needle into. I would suggest trying with a piece of lace or tulle first to learn how to do the knot and then practising by adding hair into your monotop pieces.