A juju hat is a stunning cultural masterpiece. In order to keep it that way, a little TLC is required.
Why is this so? Because an authentic African juju hat is made of feathers from different types of birds. The feathers are fanned out and attached to a raffia base.
Feathers are delicate. They require special care when cleaning so as not to lose their gorgeous form. A juju hat is not a hang-and-forget type of décor, but it doesn’t take too much effort to keep your juju hat in good shape either.
Proper handling starts from the moment you receive your juju hat. You will need to use gentle force to push the raffia base for the hat to bloom out. However, don’t push too much so as not to cause damage to the feathers and the raffia itself. Raffia is pretty durable, but too much use of force may ruin it, too.
Preventing bugs from attacking your juju hat
There are bugs that just can’t resist feathers – whether they are attached to the bird or not. Feathers that have not been treated with toxic commercial substances needs protection from these bugs.
You don’t need to use harmful chemicals to keep them at bay, though. In fact, we’re against it. Those harmful substances will affect your health and the quality of your juju hat as well.
So in lieu, we recommend that you use essential oils. They’re safe to use and smells really good, too! You can use citronella, patchouli, lavender, or eucalyptus. Just place a few drops of these essential oils on a clean cloth and gently rub the feathers with it.
Lavender, by the way, has the ability to ward off moth as well. Moth has a penchant for feathers, too. If dabbing the feathers with essential oil is too much work, you can simply place a few dried lavender flowers on a filter paper, fold it, then attach it to the back of the juju hat base.
Avoid hanging your African juju hat where it will constantly hit by sunlight. The UV rays will make the feathers brittle. Constant exposure to direct sunlight will wash out the color of the feathers as well.
As much as possible, do not put your juju hat near a cooking area; and this is not because of flammability issue. Contrary to popular belief, feathers are not exactly flammable. They will smolder when exposed to an open flame like everything else. However, they will not ignite.
The problem you’ll have when your juju hat is placed inside a kitchen is the build-up of grease on the feathers. Cleaning it up will be difficult, and sometimes, de-clumping the feathers is next to impossible.
Spilling something on your juju hat is bound to happen at some point. Keep calm because here comes the good news: the natural oils in each feather of authentic juju hats made of the highest quality such as ours are very much intact.
These natural oils will protect the feathers from discoloration…as long as the spill is removed immediately. Just gently dab a clean cloth over the spill.
Taking good care of your juju hat is important so that you can enjoy it for years to come. You can even pass it on the next generation!