Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Making The Bridal Veil

Here is one of the two hair clips I made and featured in a past blog post

I have made a lot of detailed pieces, but this was the first full veil I've made.  So to prepare I did a lot of research on determining and adjusting lengths, edging, and adding lace and jeweled details.  One really useful site is here:Crafty Wedding .  This blog site was helpful with cutting instructions and for doing a rolled pencil edge.

So, after meeting with Katie Beth to find out the length she wanted for the blusher, and the back, I also found out what sort of details she wanted to have on her veil.  She had purchased a shimmering wedding tulle that was 108" wide, and had about a yard and a half of lace that matched that on her dress.  She also had a few flowers she wanted incorporated in the design if possible.  SOOOOO, with this information and my measurements, I laid out the tulle on my kitchen table and cut the edges as shown in the Crafty Wedding site.

After cutting the entire piece to the full length I needed, I then folded it in half, and then than in half again and cut the edge using a large salad bowl as the guide for my rounded edge.

Once the edges were cut, I trimmed off any ragged edges

I then folded and pinned the length I needed for the blusher

Katie Beth had purchased a wide plastic comb, but I bought a sturdier metal one to use instead.  These last longer and the beauty of them is that whichever direction the comb needs to go to hold the veil onto your head the metal can bend to accommodate this, whereas the plastic comb can only go in the one direction that it's molded. This was fortunate, because they wound up needing to bend the comb when they put her hair up for her wedding.
I took a piece of tulle and wrapped the top of the metal comb.  This serves two purposes, it covers the metal so it doesn't show through and it gives you something to sew on as you secure the tulle to the comb.

The metal comb with tulle wrapped through tines and stitched at the end to secure,

Gathering and pinning the tulle to just a bit wider than the comb,  and all ready for stitching to the comb.

Another view of the wrapped comb, ready for stitching and then attached to veil.

Once I had the comb secure, I took the heavier embroidery thread and following the suggestions from the Crafty Wedding began doing the pencil edge to the veils edges.  I had practiced on a few strips of the tulle I'd cut off before beginning on the main veil.  It took a bit of time, but I was pleased with the results and the fringy appearance it gave, because of the volume of fabric.

Here is the veil with just the pencil edging done

Once, I had this complete, I laid out the lace and flowers to find a look that would be attractive.  I had originally thought I would cut the lace into sections and use the flowers in between these sections, so I could cover more of the back of the veil.  The problem is this lace design really did not lend itself to being cut apart.  So, I centered it and used the flowers to go around the curves of the corners.
I pinned the lace and flowers in place and checked their positions to be sure they were properly balanced, before stitching them in place.  Once these were on I began the process of adding the decorative details.  I used two sizes of round pearls, clear glass beads and oblong pearl beads following the laces design.

The veil with the lace and flowers pinned in place.
Lace with some of the pearls
The details of flowers, beads and gems

Final lace, flowers with details added

Once this was done, I carefully used Aleene's jewelry and fabric glue to adhere 3mm Savwarski gems onto the lace to add a touch of extra bling that could catch the light.  With all this done the veil was ready to present to Katie Beth.

Veil finished with trim and waiting for Katie Beth to pick up

This was her trying it on for the first time:

Katie Beth trying the veil on in Hannah's room so she can see herself in the mirror

Back detail and length

And here it is with her wedding dress.  Think it worked out well and she was quite pleased with the results.

The pictures a bit blurry, but you can see the blusher length here.

The back view

Here is the veil with dress (photo courtesy Michele Guzman Photography)

So there we are.  I so enjoyed making this that it's inspired me to begin doing a lot of other hand work pieces that I'll feature in other blog posts.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Reception Decorating and Set Up

I've mentioned in a couple other posts that Kevin and I had volunteered to help create a dance space for our friend and girls dance teacher Katie Beth for her wedding.  Yesterday afternoon, we met at the Civic Center with a group of other volunteers to get everything set up for today's reception after the wedding service.

The Civic Center is an enormous space that will hold a lot of people and the tables needed to seat and serve them.  The problem with this space is that there is no place to be able to connect decorations to or hang anything from, so all the decor needs to be free standing.  So with a lot of planning, preparation and effort everyone was able to work together to give this area a beautiful transformation to create the romantic environment to celebrate Katie Beth and Zack's new start on married life together.  Here are some photos as we arrived and began bringing the materials in to decorate.

The lattice sections went up behind the head tables to define the space and act as an attractive backdrop that blocks the empty stage area behind.

The table settings began for all the guest tables, serving tables and specialty tables for the cake and scones.

Top picture Marla setting guest tables, center pic show some of the center pieces, bottom pic shows cake table

Zack setting places at a head table, Mae working on a guest table and Katie Beth and Zack in front of the cake table

Scone tables decorated

Then with a LOT of help from many others, we set up the canopies that will serve as the dance area.

Pieces are organized for assembly of the two units

Like giant tinker toy sets they came together, then it was time to add lights
After the lights were strung, it was time to wrap with the tulle.  

Details added before it was time to raise the canopies to their full height.
And up they go!!

We will be heading over this afternoon to the wedding and then to enjoy the fruits of all the labor that have gone into preparing for this reception.  I'll post some pictures after the service and reception to show how everything turned out and if all our best laid plans worked as we hope they will.

The tulle, ivy and lanterns at the sides of the dance canopy, the silhouettes at the center two peaks and lantern closeup

Civic Center before.
Civic Center/Reception Hall after

Quite a difference don't you think?  Let the party begin!!!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Hard to Say Goodbye

Today we had to say goodbye to another of our pets.  Our dog Nala was 6 when my sister in law and the organization she's a part of rescued her from the pound.  She's always been a sweet dog, but came with a lot of health challenges.  After having her a couple months we had her groomed and found two large growths on her back leg and tail.  The vet in  California biopsied them and found they were both malignant cancerous growths, that she diagnosed as an aggressive cancer and gave her 6 months.

Cameron giving Nala attention and Bea making sure she gets some too.

Nala with the girls

We decided we'd do what we could to keep her as healthy and happy as we could in the time she had left.  So, we had her on a healthy diet with doggie vitamins to build her immune system and just loved on her.  Over time she had her ups and downs, but just kept plugging away.  She did that for another 7 years!!

Not a full Samoyed, but a mix she had touches of brown and HUGE paws

Today though we had to make the tough decision to put her down, as she'd reached a point of having a lot of pain and had lost the ability to stand with her back legs anymore.  Fortunately there is a vet in the area that makes house calls, so we didn't have to stress her anymore, or us for that matter, by taking her to a busy vets office with all the other animals, the travel, and the strangers in her last hours.

She passed away peacefully in her favorite sleeping spot and while we grieve her loss, we are grateful for all the years she was a part of our family.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Amazing Garden Bean Crop

I had featured in past posts the above picture that I had incorrectly labeled as "pea flowers".  Instead it's for yard long beans, also known as snake beans.  I guess it pays to mind my own garden markers to know what I'm taking photos of (smile).

The garden on the side, those are the beans in the middle of the first planting bed.

Beans on the vines.
Here are the amazing beans that are produced after the pretty flowers fade.  They definitely earn their names.  We've been harvesting daily these beans and after I clean them I cut them to bite size and add them to the bags of beans in the freezer. 

The girls with the beans gives perspective on how big they are

These are growing SO WELL they are definitely keepers in my future Florida garden plans.

Happy Gardening.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

DIY Wedding Pomander

As our friend Katie Beth's wedding date approaches my preparations for helping in their reception decor continue.  One of those projects is a wedding floral pomander ball.  Or in this case 4 of these are needed for our purposes to hang from the top of the interior of the canopies.
Her wedding colors are white and purple, so I used the remaining purple silk flowers she sent in the supply of tulle, lights, ivy and flowers to get creative with.

I bought two packs of 4" Styrofoam balls from Walmart and purple wire ribbon.

I made a bow with the wired ribbon, then took an 8 inch piece of satin ribbon and after hot gluing it to the top of the ball I added pins to secure it to the top.  I then began pushing section of the leaves and flowers into the ball, placing them just far enough apart to cover, but not crowd the flowers.

Ribbon hot glued and pinned down, then hot glue added to attach bow

I used a pair of wire cutters to cut the flowers off with about an inch to two inches of stem on them for pushing into the Styrofoam ball. To be sure the white ball doesn't show through, I used the hot glue gun to hold down the silk leaves and act as a base.

The extra leaves were hot glued to the base, while cut flowers were pushed into Styrofoam

I enhanced the flowers using Offray My Moments petite gems and secured them with clear drying Aleene's fabric glue. I wanted a little sparkle to catch the lights we'll have on the dance canopy.  Putting the gems on was a bit tricky, so after putting a small dab of glue on a petal, I used my jewelry tweezers to set the gem on top. This took some patience, I have to admit.

Once I had the Styrofoam ball completely covered with the flowers, I did a bit of rearranging for better coverage and balance and then TA DA, a wedding flower pomander!!