I'm calling it a first glance review because I just received the book last night and have yet been able to try out any of the techniques but after spending half the night reading the first part of the book and making my way through the beginner's section I felt compelled to do a quick review right away.
May I first begin this by saying, "HOLY COW, THIS BOOK IS AMAZING!" I am really so very in love with it. Opening this book is like walking into a one-on-one class with a Wig Master, that wig master being Katie Bair. Each section is really well thought out, formulated in a step-by-step program complete with A BUTT TON (yes that is a real unit of measurement and if we are using my own booty for as a measurement of a butt, a butt ton is A LOT) of photos.
The book is set up rather like a textbook, meaning that it assumes that you are looking to educate yourself on all aspects of Wigcraft, rather than just flipping through the sections to find the one tutorial you need to finish a wig. I suppose you could use it like that but, the beginner's section includes some properties, techniques, and language that isn't explained in the later sections; she assumes you have read it by now. I suggest using the book like a textbook and reading it from cover to cover. Most of the lessons build on each other and use previous techniques to create more advanced styles.
Also like a text book, each section ends with a review section. It's essentially a walk through guide on how to style a practice wig. The practice wig is of a particular style and uses a wig from one of her favorite manufacturers, taking it from a completely un-styled wig, to a total transformation. I can hear a ton of people groaning and saying, "Why would I spend money on a wig I'll probably never wear?". As a fellow cosplayer I can sympathize, but, honestly, I think it's one of the best parts of this book. I like being taught techniques individually and then being able to link them together. For me it makes the techniques seem more applicable than just individual lessons that seem to have little to do with each other.
Overall, I think this book has the potential to be a treasure trove of information for any cosplayer who is involved in wig styling, whether they are a beginner or even an expert, there is something for everyone to learn. The instructions are easy to follow, the jokes are relatively funny, and the photos look extremely helpful.
I hope to bring you a much more detailed review after I pop out a few wigs. I'll let you know if during the throes of passionate wig making, if the directions still make sense and if the photos are actually as helpful as i think they are...and hopefully I'll be showing you some successful wigs.
I'm planning on take some pictures during my wig making processes for both American Dream and Black Cat. I've also decided as soon as I complete the Princess Tutu wig, I'll suck up my embarrassment and show pictures of the complete disaster that came before the arrival of this book. Perhaps that will be the best way to determine the usefulness of the book. (And Katie, I promise to take my time and do my absolute best to follow your instructions to the letter! No poor reviews just because I didn't take the time to read!)