Amherst Magazine: Summer 2012

Grecian Formula

By Emily Gold Boutilier


In searching for the next retro trend, Hollywood stylists would be wise to stay away from the beehive and the perm and look a bit further back—to the fifth century. That’s B.C.

In a mid-April workshop sponsored by the classics department, three students volunteered to have their hair braided like the subjects in the Erechtheum Caryatid statues of Ancient Greece (most of which are now on display at the Acropolis Museum in Athens).

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Kyra Schapiro ’15 volunteered to have her hair braided like the
subjects in the Erechtheum Caryatid statues of Ancient Greece.

Professor of Classics Rebecca Sinos helped plan the event after a guest lecturer in her “Archeology of Greece” course, Katherine Schwab, described her work in recreating the statues’ elaborately braided styles. That lecture inspired the braiding workshop.

Laurie Canter, academic department coordinator for classics, moonlights as a hair braider to the stars (well, to her daughter), so she acted as the event’s stylist. The volunteers were classics students Kyra Schapiro ’15, Sophie Padelford ’15 and Hampshire College student Josh Parr.

Canter fashioned Parr’s hair into a sort of wreath—which he removed once he got home. Schapiro, on the other hand, was so pleased that she asked Canter to redo her braids for the college’s Spring Formal a few days later. Sinos can understand why: “She really looked like a queen.”     

Photo by Niahlah Hope ’15