Col­lab Vic­toire de Castel­lane & Nathalie Azoulai, bad hair day?

J’aime pas mes cheveux is an ex­tremely funny, po­etic pic­ture book about ac­cept­ing one­self writ­ten by Nathalie Azoulai and il­lus­trated by Vic­toire de Castel­lane.

Milk Magazine (English) - - CONTENTS - text: angèle rincheval hernu ­– photo: karel balas

Au­thor Nathalie Azoulai and jew­ellery de­signer Vic­toire de Castel­lane, both fa­mous in their re­spec­tive fields, have been friends since they first met at the sea­side. Now they’ve co-pro­duced an ex­quis­ite tale for chil­dren. “What I had in mind was the story of a lit­tle girl who didn’t like her hair, who wanted to change her hair­style, who dreamt of hav­ing a fringe,” says Nathalie. “And to il­lus­trate it, I im­me­di­ately thought of Vic­toire. I liked the idea that she wasn’t a chil­dren’s book il­lus­tra­tor, that she would look at the project dif­fer­ently.” At the time, on her In­sta­gram ac­count, the jew­ellery de­signer was hav­ing fun adding sketches of her­self along­side Amer­i­can celebri­ties, par­o­dy­ing the cur­rent ob­ses­sion with self­ies. Peo­ple found her sig­na­ture trait, her play­ful, min­i­mal line, both ap­peal­ing and amus­ing.

But does any­one like their hair?

One writes the words; the other replies with il­lus­tra­tions. Con­ver­sa­tion flows freely be­tween Nathalie and Vic­toire and their game of ping-pong soon gives rise to the story of a lit­tle girl whose hair had proved a dis­ap­point­ment to her par­ents since she was born. When she cuts her­self a fringe, against her par­ents’s wishes, she feels like a queen, a princess, and be­comes a de­ci­sion-maker whom ev­ery­one copies – even the hi­lar­i­ous hair pro­fes­sor! Faces dis­ap­pear be­hind cur­tains of hair – which be­comes a char­ac­ter in the story in its own right. But as she eyes her friends’ heads of hair, our young hero­ine is still un­happy: whether straight, curly or plaited, no mat­ter what tex­ture or style, she would give any­thing to have hair that didn’t look like her own! For­tu­nately, she is soon re­as­sured; she finds out that her mother has the same prob­lem: she also dreamt of hav­ing dif­fer­ent hair. And her grand­mother with such a chic white chignon? She, too, longed for hair other than her own, but hav­ing mel­lowed as she grew older, she man­ages to con­sole her grand­daugh­ter about her un­ruly – but adorable – locks.

Learn­ing to like one­self

On a deeper level, this good-hu­moured story gives food for thought. “Hair is a re­flec­tion of our per­son­al­ity, but it is also the only phys­i­cal as­pect we can re­ally trans­form. If our hair drives us crazy, there’s still hope! When we change our hair­style, we change our whole look. “It’s a book meant to re­as­sure hun­dreds of lit­tle girls who dis­like their hair and who, more gen­er­ally, have dif­fi­culty ac­cept­ing them­selves as they are,” ex­plain the two au­thors in unison. In fact, the sym­bolic charge of hair is colos­sal: Sam­son drew his strength from his; Venus owed her beauty to hers; Vic­toire de Castel­lane’s fringe has been in­te­gral to her iden­tity since she was six months old. “My mother de­cided that a fringe would suit me and I ac­cepted that. I’ve al­ways worn a fringe. It’s part of me. It’s be­come my logo. But from ten on­wards, I ex­per­i­mented with all the colours in the rain­bow!” she re­mem­bers with a smile. Nathalie Azoulai, mean­while, has al­ways bat­tled with her frizzy hair: “I wanted hair like my neigh­bour’s; I des­per­ately yearned for a fringe… This book is like a fan­tasy and I hope that it will help lit­tle girls to re­lax and ac­cept them­selves.” I’m pretty sure that not only will dis­con­tent young­sters take heart from this de­light­ful book but that their moth­ers will also en­joy read­ing it.

nathalie azoulai and vic­toire de castel­lane, j’aime pas mes cheveux, al­bin michel je­unesse

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from France

© PressReader. All rights reserved.