Friday, March 18, 2011

Answer: What kind of feather is that?

To solve this particular problem, I started with: 
[ feather hair extensions ]
and very quickly discover this is the newest fashion trend in hair decoration!  (I didn’t know that.)  Even Steven Tyler is wearing feather hair extensions, so it must be pretty popular in Hollywood and fashion circles.  

Click on #1.  Learn the feathers can come in bundles, or as singles. I also find a word that's new to me:  coque.  So I searched on: 
[ coque feathers
and the results were... I don't know... funny.  Why?  Because I saw a lot of page titles like this: 
"....coque, feathers..."  
If coque was a bird (which I thought it was), why would they separate the word coque from feathers?  So I did a quick: 
[ define coque ]
and found that the word "coque" means: n. 1. A small loop or bow of ribbon used in making hats, boas, etc.

Ah.  So "coque" is a jargon word that refers to this kind of thing.  Hence, "...coque, feathers..."  

I realized that what I really wanted to find was Theresa's specific kind of feather extension, so I modified my search to be: 
[ yellow black feather extension

This led me to Etsy's page on yellow-black-feather-hair-extensions.   This page says it’s “rooster feathers" somewhere in the middle.  

So far, so good.  But I really wanted confirmation of this.  So I kept searching for another source.  

Farther down on the same results page I see "Hairfeather site” with the phrase “top of the line rooster feathers” in the snippet.  That seems promising, so I click through to lowlight-hair-feathers.  

It's all looking good, and I'm seeing "rooster feathers" everywhere.  But I also find out that extensions can come from peacock feathers.  (But after clicking through a bunch of peacock extensions, I quickly learn they all have “eyes” or a much larger texture comb-like structure. That's not what I saw in Theresa's hair.) 

Finally, I did the obvious search for:
 [ rooster feathers
and find where I can compare the different kind of feathers available.  (Ostrich, peacock, turkey, rooster, pheasant... a few clicks re-confirms my suspicions.)  

And yes, here it is, exactly what's in her hair... 

Turns out that the Featherplace also sells feather in bulk for Mardi Gras and costume decorations as well.  Who knew there were feather wholesalers?  Makes sense once you read about it, but this is the magic of internet search.  You end up learning all kinds of things you'd never expect.  Hair extensions, coque, feather wholesalers.  The world is a remarkable place.  

Search lesson:  In this case, I should have jumped immediately into searching for the "yellow black feather extension" since I wanted to know specifically what she was wearing.  It didn't matter much in the end, but it would have saved a step or two.  

Overall time:  2 minutes.  
Keep searching! 


  1. We'd say these are pheasant tail feathers! No rooster.

  2. Interesting.... can you say how one could tell them apart?

  3. I found an interesting article that confirms it is indeed rooster feathers from a specific farm which bred the roosters to have these very thin/long feathers some striped like a pheasant.