An easy enough updo that can be practiced and experimented with as you count down the days to your formal.  As with any updo, freshly washed hair is not advised.  Should you have no other choice, make sure products like plenty of mousse and gel are applied prior to drying.  Rub a little hair wax on your hands when braiding.  Hair that is too clean and silky is always difficult to do in an updo.

You should have hair all-one-length or close to it that’s at least down to your shoulders (medium length) or a little beyond.  Very long hair will not do well with this style unless you are happy with and able to "pile" the curls up in the crown area to your suitability.  

A helper is also needed to do this updo as it is or with any variations you choose where the crown area is concerned.  Other needed items will include: rattail comb, 20-25 fancy hairpins of choice, brush, smoothing serum, hairspray and coated hair bands that match hair color.

 DIY Updo  front

First, part the hair from just behind one ear taking it up in the direction towards the crown area and back down to just behind opposite ear.   Take the entire front section and clip it out of the way.

Next, holding your head down, have your helper brush this area, then french braid hair starting from the nape of the neck and work all the way up to the part.  Secure braid at the part with a fabric-coated band.  Elastic or rubber bands are never encouraged as they cause hair breakage.  Wrap a small section from the ponytail around the band to hide and secure with a hairpin.  Clip this small ponytail you have now out of your way off to the side.
(PROFESSIONAL TRICK:  Place a small dot of hairwax or hairglue along the inside of pins to help them stay in more securely!  Also start pin in opposite direction you intend then flip back in right direction as you drive it in the rest of the way.  This will lock it in )

DIY Updo back

Undo the front section.  Leaving a few tendrils hanging separate along front side hairline, brush and divide the rest of the top into five small ponytails placing all close together. Band them along the part line having all centered at crown.   Wrap a tiny section from each ponytail around the outside of band to cover and secure with hairpin from the back.  Next, using a small curling iron, make spiral curls from the center three small ponytails to hang down over braid.  Hairspray both ringlet curls and braid lightly.

Take the ponytail you clipped off from the french braid and divide (as you go) into many small sections.  Applying a very tiny amount of smoothing serum to these sections, take them one at a time and curl up (with fingers) into silver dollar size curls.  Fasten down with hairpin.  Repeat this step with remaining sections to include two outside small ponytails from front taking care to place in an all over even pattern in the crown area around the spiral curls as shown.  Watch how you place pins as you work design as well to allow even spacing for visual effect.  Make loose ringlets from tendrils left out along front.  Spray all curls lightly with hairspray. Randomly place a few more hairpins along the braid.

Crown area may be designed differently according to hair density or your personal preference.  Have fun!