Sunday, March 21, 2010

DIY Floor Length Veil

My fingertip veil is shaped like a flat-bottomed U, unhemmed, gathered at the top and attached to a comb. It was much easier than my fingertip veil as it has no fiddly embellishments.

The piece of tulle i used is 1.5m x 65cm. I folded it in half and rounded the bottom corner using a tape measure as a compass, then straightened up the top from the crooked cutting at the fabric shop. It's not a full quarter circle like the fingertip veil, just a rounded edge.

I then sewed two rows of gathering stitch across the top of the veil and gathered it, knotted off the ends and then sewed it onto a comb. I then carefully trimmed the tulle along the top of the comb and threaded beads around the front.

I'll wear the fingertip veil at the wedding; if there's a breeze, i'll put the floor length on for a few photos, otherwise i'll keep it for my trash the dress shoot on the beach. There's always a breeze there!

DIY Fingertip Veil finished

My veil is finally finished :) I glued 24 Swarovski crystals around the edge and on the front of the comb, and then wrapped beads around the comb.

DIY Wedding Makeup - Eyes

I'm finding eyeshadow to be the most difficult part of applying wedding makeup by myself. Now that i have the colour i want, i'm practising as much as i can. I have to apply it quite heavily, much more heavily than i do for work. I apply it to a level that i think is quite dark, then take a photo and it can barely be seen. So i then put it on to the point i look like i'm trying to do smokey eye, take another photo - and it's still too light! I put a third application on and i think i could still go darker. That's enough for today though.

I've used MAC Folie on the inner third, and MAC Showstopper across the whole lid. I've also used an old cream coloured eyeshadow just underneath the arch of my eyebrow across to the outer edge.

I need to buy another brush to help blend - the one i use to apply it doesn't blend very smoothly. I have an eye kabuki brush arriving from Everyday Minerals next week so hopefully that will help me out.

DIY Fingertip Veil

I wanted a ribbon edge on my veil, but the ribbon i've got seemed too thick, so i decided on a pencil edge done by a rolled hem. I had to go and buy a rolled hem foot for my sewing machine ($20, not too pricey), and then practice with it on the trimmed offcuts of the tulle. It took a few goes but eventually i got the hang of how much tulle to roll into the curved part of the foot so it would roll correctly. If i got too much in there part of the hem would hang out.

I then started (very slowly) to edge the two pieces of my veil. I stuffed up a few times with the result that part of the hem would hang out, but i just unpicked it and started again. I edged the whole U shape, and left the tops undone.

Close-up of the rolled hem.

If you're going to put any embellishments on the veil, such as crystals, i'd suggest do it now. I left it until after i'd gathered and attached to the comb, and it made it harder to do. Tulle is very tricky to get bead glue to stick to, and i ended up having to put glue on the crystal, place it on the tulle then press it to the floor (the glue comes off my floor easily), which meant i could only do a few at the time because the gathering made parts of the tulle come off the floor.

Once the crystals are dry, take your two pieces of veil back to the machine and sew two rows of gathering stitch (longest straight stitch your machine will do) along the top of each piece about 3-4mm apart, less than 1cm from the top edge. Then take the two top threads and pull the material away from them, towards the middle of the veil, to gather. Below is what they look like, before and after gathering.

Whipstitch them individually onto your comb, knot off the long threads at each end, then trim the top carefully, making sure not to cut any of the stitching holding it on. If you're like me, go along it with another row of whipstitch after you've accidentally cut some of the stitching :)
I still had another crystal to stick onto the comb at this point, which is why it looks a bit uneven here. Put as much glue on the back of the crystal as you can. Because the tulle is full of holes, there's not much for the glue to stick to. I ended up flipping the veil over and putting extra glue on the back of where i'd placed the crystals, to give it a bit more to hold on to.

I was originally going to go over the whipstitch with some ribbon, but i've used very fine tulle and there was no way my ribbon was going through it. So i used a few crystals instead. I'll put up a pic of the finished veil when the glue is dry.

DIY Fingertip Veil Pattern

I started on this one last weekend, and have almost finished it now - just gluing the crystals on. Will post a picture of the finished veil when it's done later today, but for now i'll try to describe how i created the pattern. When i was looking for a pattern on the internet, i couldn't find any. I did manage to find a few pages which described how to create the pattern, but no diagram or picture to go with it. I only tried on two wedding dresses when i was deciding what style to make mine, but at the time was not planning to wear a veil so didn't try any on. I could have gone into a shop and asked to just look at the veils, but i thought there'd be an easier way by finding a free pattern on the internet (and easier than trying to figure out what shape the veil in the shop was before it was gathered onto the hair comb).

I looked a pictures of real weddings and decided i liked the fingertip length, and also really loved the super long ones that had been picked up by the wind and were making fascinating patterns in the air. So i decided on both :)

I bought 1.5 m of 1.3m wide tulle and cut it in half lengthways, making two rectangles 1.5m x 65cm. I put aside one of them, as it will be for the long veil. I folded the other piece in half widthways, but not quite evenly - i left one half about 10cm longer than the other. Then i cut across the fold to create two rectangles, one 70cm x 65cm, the other 80cm x 65cm, as it's going to be a two layer veil. You'll need to work out your own length for these - i measured from the bottom of my bun to my fingertips, as i want the veil to attach under my hairstyle. I folded these in half lengthwise and laid one on top of the other, matching up the bottoms.

Part 1: Creating the U shape
This is where you start to shape the veil. It will end up like a U shape, slightly rounded at the top. I got my tape measure, laid it along the fold and put my thumb on the 33cm marking, with the end of the tape at the bottom of the veil. I then swung the end of the tape round until i reached the side of the veil, marking it with chalk every so often. You're basically using the tape as a compass to draw a quarter circle.

Here's the veil pattern. You can see how i've drawn a quarter circle on the left side (which is the bottom part) of the veil, and there's a rectangle on the top part of the veil which i haven't cut yet. Ok i know in the picture it is cut, but we'll get to that in the next part!

Part 2: Rounding the top corner
Take the shorter piece of tulle and move it up so the two tops match. Now round off the edge as shown in the picture. I drew mine freehand with the chalk but it seems to have matched up with the quarter circle. You can always use the tape measure again. If you're taller, it's ok to have a straight section between the rounded edge and the quarter circle - there is a straight section on mine but it's quite short so hard to see in the picture.

This is what you should now be left with. The two pieces of veil are ready to be hemmed if you wish, have crystals glued or sewn onto them, and then gathered and sewed onto a hair comb or headband.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Hair trial

I did a hair and makeup trial yesterday. I've been trying to do one of these every month but haven't had much luck with getting a hairstyle to work, until i decided on a bun. I've been looking in all the accessory shops i've been walking past and i found only one which stocked a hair donut. It was a medium in brown, it was the only choice they had and was $20. I could make one for less than $2 but the two fabric shops i've been to don't stock brown netting. I know it must exist somewhere! So for my trial i used a velvet scrunchie. It did the job ok but as the material is solid i couldn't put my crystal pins in it, so i used some flowers at the front for this trial. I didn't bother with hairspray or neat parts, so it's a little messy but it gives the idea.

Makeup went well with the foundation (my Everyday Minerals sample in Ivory) but although my eyeshadow (Mac Folie and Showstopper) looked really dark in the bathroom mirror, it doesn't show at all in the photo! So i'm going to go heavier on the eyes, cheeks (Mac Tenderling) and lips (Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey) for the next trial.

I also enquired about the possibility of Bihaku on my shoulders and arms. The beautician got back to me and said they had another treatment designed for the body, and the next day she sent me an email with all the details. Unfortunately it's quite expensive for the treatment ($950), requires an extra enzyme mask at the beginning (they're $100 each) and several more take home treatments, which i'll not be able to budget for before the wedding. I've done some research though, based on what i know of the Bihaku, and i've put in an order for a 2% BHA lotion and a 10% AHA lotion from Paula's Choice. They've got some great reviews from Vogue forums and they're priced very reasonably. The pH level is not as low as the Bihaku, as the Bihaku can only applied by trained beauticians and so can be a lot stronger and therefore more effective. I hope that using the two lotions together along with the Danne Superbright will be more effective that just the Superbright alone though, and i hope to see some visible reduction in the freckles.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Blinged-up - DIY Swarovski Havaianas

Completed a project on the weekend that i've had on the sidelines for quite some time - gluing crystals to my white Havaianas. I'm going to wear these after the ceremony, as i'm not used to high heels so suspect my feet will be in need of rest!

I went to the fabric shop to buy tulle to make a veil, and while i was there saw some gem glue that i thought might work well for the thongs. It's designed for gluing gems to fabric so it's flexible, which is a requirement for shoes also - i just hoped that it would stick to rubber and so far it seems to have :)

I got each crystal and placed it so the flat back was facing up. With a toothpick, i took a tiny blob of glue and touched it to the back of the crystal, which was enough to pick the crystal up with, flip it over and place it onto the strap of the thong and wiggle the toothpick out, leaving enough glue behind to hold it. They dried fairly quickly - within about 20 minutes i think, but it was a hot day.