henna party

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Last Friday we had a henna party at our house, courtesy of the fabulous Shannon and a secret henna recipe crafted by a friend of hers. We went online and surfed around to get ideas for our henna designs (search on ‘henna tattoo’ or ‘mendi’ or ‘mehendi’). There are a lot of beautiful, intricate designs to be dazzled by. I decided early that I’d stick to something simple. For one of my feet I used a sea tortoise in Hawaiian tribal style.

We all worked on our own designs, with the exception of the work on Wendy’s lower back.
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Shannon got started with Wendy while Zelly and I painted our toenails. Wendy had a few ideas for Shannon to work with, but mostly left it up to her. The result is a beautiful design that may form the basis for a tattoo of the future.
To prepare the area for henna, you first cleanse it with rubbing alcohol or something similar that will remove your skin oils. Then you rub in eucalyptus oil and you’re ready to henna. Shannon had the henna in two small squeeze bottles. I worked on my turtle design first. During and after the henna application, you pat the design with lime juice (which made me think of margaritas) to keep the henna moist and the skin sticky. The stickiness is useful when you’re finished and you wrap it with tissue (that’s what we used on our feet). You just want something that won’t slip around and move your henna, gauze pads and tape are good for larger areas, like Wendy’s back. This is very important since you need to leave the henna on for at least 12 hours and the longer you leave it on, the darker the design will be.
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This is Wendy’s henna design just after completion, still dripping with lime juice.
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These are my feet the next morning, after carefully removing the tissue.
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Here’s Shannon’s own design the next day.
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Here are the feet of Buggy (left and right) and Wendy (center).
Here’s Wendy’s back a couple of days after.

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