I used a crochet hook this time - much easier than a hair pin! I found that you have to really pay attention to making sure the hook & latch are open/closed at the correct times so that it doesn't snag your hair. After crocheting a row or two in the back, I started getting into a system of my own. I figured out what amount of hair was best to use, twisted and wrapped it around my finger, then grabbed it with the hook once it was under the braid. Pretty easy process.
I don't know exactly how long it took me to complete this style because I did it over a couple days - braided my hair one night, crocheted the back one day, and the front the day after. I just didn't feel like doing it for more than a couple hours at once and I was going to be at home anyway so, I wasn't in much of a rush. Once I was finished, I couldn't believe how much hair was on my head! Lol! I didn't even crochet hair on every braid in the back (just every other one because it was already starting to feel thick). What was even harder to believe was that this much hair was just on the top of my head for those braids!! Aaaahhhh!! I won't even get back into all that tho :)
Even though it wasn't heavy at all, it was definitely way too much hair for me. I cut it into a few layers - the longest one coming somewhere around the middle of my back. I wasn't really planning on wearing it out anyway. The thickness was unreal! It worked well with the styles I planned on wearing with it, like the one pictured at the top of this post. I don't know what I would do with myself if my hair was this long AND thick! Other than love it, of course.