JodiT looked at a lot of DIY birdcage veil tutorials before diving in to make her own, but found none to be *just* what she needed. So she meshed them all into one, added her own (very helpful!) two cents and put together this easy-to-follow tutorial for all you crafty mavens!
The first veil that I made was attached to a headband. This was easy to make and very easy to put on and take off (no fussing around with clips) but it was also not adaptable. I could change the length slightly by moving the headband, but that was it. I couldn't change the angle at all. I also played around with the single-gather type, gathering one long edge of the netting and attaching it to a single comb that would be worn at the crown of the head but I was not happy with how it looked on me.
What I made is a wrap-around veil: a length of netting gathered at the shorter ends and attached on both sides of my head. Here's how I did it!
- 1 metre of 25cm wide black french netting
- Black grosgrain ribbon (24mm wide, max 30cm long)
- 1 or 2 x 3.5cm toupe clip
- Black sewing thread
- Sharp sewing needle
I don't know how long my piece of netting is because I measured it on my head. I basically allowed for it to sit about 5cm behind each ear while it brushed the tip of my nose. My netting is 25cm wide.
Click on the pictures for more detailed, blown-up versions.
I gathered the ends, again by holding it on my head (in front of a mirror obviously). I just gathered the ends in each hand and adjusted until I was happy with how it looked. I measured how long the gather was. I sewed the gather by tying a thread to one corner of the netting and running it through the diamonds in an up and down fashion along the short end, gathered the netting along the thread to the correct length and tied off.
As you can see, in some of these pictures I have used a contrasting thread to better demonstrate what I am doing. Obviously for my black veil I have used black thread. It is easier to see what you are doing if you are in good natural light. Also, the sharper your sewing needle the easier it will be to sew through the ribbon.
I sewed 24mm grosgrain ribbon to the ends for a neat finish, and because I want to be able to pin a brooch to the end of my veil for decoration. This is the most straightforward way I found to provide the neatest result. Keep in mind which side of your veil will face out and which will be hidden against your head.
Cut a length of ribbon twice the width of the gathered end + 2cm. Sew the short ends of the ribbon together about 1cm from the edge.
Turn the ribbon loop inside out so you have a tube of ribbon with the seam on the inside. Place the gathered edge of netting between the two layers if ribbon and use some small running stitches to secure the gathered end of netting to the bottom layer of ribbon only (the side that will be against your head).
Use a single thread and small stitches for the neatest result. Or use a double thread for quicker sewing if the ends will be hidden behind a fascinator!
My fascinator has both a brooch pin and a crocodile clip on the back, so I can pin it to one end of the veil and use the fascinator's crocodile clip to attach that end of the veil to my head.
I have also deliberately not shaped my veil too much because I have no idea how my hair will be, so I am leaving the veil quite full and un-shaped so that it is as flexible as possible. Some small stitches and a bobby-pin or two on the actual day will shape it to my head more.