Saturday, July 28, 2012

Excuses, excuses...

It's not that I don't have a million and a half things to post about, it's more that summer is an exhausting exercise in family-time. Which is fun to be sure, but it doesn't leave a lot of sitting-down-at-the-computer-when-not-working time. Also, two weeks ago today I got married so it was a whirlwind of cheap craftiness before that. Luckily for you, I photographed it all.

Why yes. Yes that was a threat.

One of my last minute, thrown together projects was to make a birdcage veil. I went back and forth on whether or not I actually wanted one, but hastily bought half a yard of birdcage netting and a yard of regular ivory tulle when I picked up the fabric for my dress. I kept trying to figure out how to make a clip or something so a veil would even stay in my very fine hair, but then it hit me - a headband. I love headbands. I have nine million of them and I wear them quite frequently until I have to put on sunglasses and then I can't figure out how to maneuver both.

So the first thing I have to figure out is how to make a headband since of the aformentioned millions of headbands, none of them was really thin enough for this project. Also, it was late and I'd been drinking, but not so much that I thought going to Walmart in the middle of the night was a good idea. So I improvised. If you decide to make a birdcage veil it will probably look much nicer if you just start with a Dollar Tree headband and wrap it in ribbon. It's just that I had a deadline, you understand.

Step 1: Find some crap.

The crap I found is likely over-complicated by the distinct lack of headband. I inculded one that fits well as a template for whatever I was to come up with. You see here some Rigilene, floral tape, plastic coated wire, a former bra underwire, an old beaded necklace, a package of feathers, some hem tape, and a couple of ribbons.

So you can take some of that stuff and stick it together with floral tape.

It's SUPPOSED to look like this. REALLY...

When you have enough crap together to make a head band, wrap the whole thing in floral tape.

I used the headband I liked as a guide to help get the shape right.
And after that, wrap the whole thing in some kind of ribbon. I went with something I had on hand that was a pretty close match for my hair. 

The next step is to attach the birdcage netting. I gathered it by hand with matching thread and a needle and stitched it to one end and also a position at the top as determined by trying it on. 

Gather ye rosebuds... and netting.

Once stitched in place, it is essential that you test the fit while your fiance watches TV obliviously behind you. 

From here the only job left is embellishment. I started with a felt oval:

And to this I stitched quite a few white feathers, and then sewed the whole thing to the apex of the headband. Hot glue would probably work just as well, but I'm someone accustomed to sewing. 

After the feathers were attached, I cut layered flowers out of the tulle and used a very thin needled to gather them and affix beads from the cut up old beaded necklace. These were stitched to the headband as well. I didn't document this very well, but it's not a difficult process. Fold the yard of tulle along the length until it's 4 or 5 inches wide. Cut off the end to make a square, then cut out a basic flower shape. Keeping the tulle stacked together, stitch a circle around the center with a long running stitch. Gather this and tie off your thread. With a beading needle, pull the thread up, stick on a seed bead, then pull the thread back down through the fabric, and repeat until it's appropriately bling-y. I made three flowers, one smaller than the others. 

My bust of Rufus Wainwright models the finished veil for you:

Doesn't he make a pretty bride? 

A closeup of the feathers and "flowers". 

I thought it was just enough to say "wedding," but not so much that I'd feel silly walking down the street. I was pretty pleased with the result, and at a total cost of about $3, I felt pretty good about the investment as well!

I'm married YAY!

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