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Sunday, April 29, 2012

DIY First Communion Veil

Tomorrow is our big day.  First Communion and Confirmation.  The veil is the cherry on the top of the the First Communion ensemble.  It's also the easiest part to make.


I made my own bridal veil and it was important to me to make my daughter's First Communion veil.  They are not expensive to buy - you can get them anywhere you find First Communion dresses and even in bridal sections of craft stores.  But why buy when you can make your own?  (I should note that the following images are not mine, but come from various commercial sources.  You can find any of these images and corresponding vendors through a Google search of "communion veils," but I have also linked the pictures to the source website.)

First, you need to decide what the headpiece will be.  You can use a crown

www.autumnwest.com

A headband

www.irishjewelrycompany.com
Or a bow, barrette, cluster of flowers

www.thecatholicgiftstore.com


They are all basically made the same way.  First thing is picking the right veil material.  You want sheer bridal fabric, not a coarse tulle.  The bridal tulle comes in wider widths than other fabrics and the wider the fabric, the fuller the veil can be.  You can also buy fabric that is already trimmed in lace or finished or do it yourself.  Finishing can be as simple as a rolled hem with a serger.  I didn't finish the ends of the veil, preferring to keep it simple.  Most store bought veils are finished.

After you determine the beginning width of the veil, decide how long you want the veil.  My daughter wanted a veil that went over her shoulder near her elbows.  That's about 24".  After you cut the tulle to your desired length you can cut the edges in curves.  We didn't do that, creating a more horizontal feel.


Using a clear monofilament thread (fishing line), create tiny gathers and use a hand needle or machine stitch to gather the veil.  If you use a hand sewing method, use a machine zig-zag stitch to fasten the gathers.  Make the gathers as full or loose as you choose.  

Now it's time to attach the gathered veil to the headband.  In our case we had a headpiece we purchased. My daughter wanted it to be more like a headband, so we cut it.


If you leave the round headpiece intact, you can sew the veil at the gathers directly onto the headpiece.  If you stretch it around the ring, you will have a veil that is loose on top of the head.  That's fine if it's the look you want.

www.catholicshopper.com

Otherwise you can gather it more tightly.  Transparent combs are excellent for this and can be found in the bridal sections of most craft stores.  Hand sew the gathered veil onto the comb.  You can add beads, crystals, ribbons or flowers.  We just used it like it was part of the headpiece.




And there you have it - a veil that is very versatile in its look, but constructed in the same easy method.



cindy