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Conversational Threads

beading bridal veil

Josefly | Posted in General Discussion on

I’ve read some of the archives on this topic, but wonder if there’s anything new to add. I’ve made a bridal veil before, but I trimmed the edge of that one with narrow satin ribbon – no problem. This bride wants no trimming or hem, but tiny seed beads sewn every 3 inches or so on, or near, the edge of the veil.

I’ve tried sewing the beads onto the tulle by hand – very tedious. Using invisible thin nylon thread ( which would glitter almost as much as the beads do if it shows, so it mustn’t), I put each bead on, run through the bead 3-4 times around and through the tulle. But when I tie the nylon thread in back, the knots don’t want to hold. Any suggestions?

I gluing the beads is the answer, is there a glue better than the Gem-Tac I’ve already seen recommended in a thread from last year?

Edited 3/12/2008 7:16 pm ET by Josefly


  1. Ocrafty1 | | #1

    Hi Josefly,

    I just made a veil last yr. for a young woman I graduated from college with...It took me 12 yrs to get my degree, and I started late.  I used a glue made by Jewel-Tone. It is flexible and doesn't show. I put a little glob in a plastic lid, picked up the pearls with a silk pin, picked up a bit of the glue, and stuck it to the tulle.  I also used iron on adhesive to attach the ribbon on the edges. I found the ribbon similar to what she wanted, but had to split it legnthwise to get it exact. It was too thin to sew. I put the fusing on first, then split it so it wouldn't ravel...time consuming, but it was worth it for her! Here are a few pictures.

    1. SAAM | | #3

      What a beautiful veil. Your friend must have been so pleased. Did you make the headpiece as well?Sherry

      1. Ocrafty1 | | #6

        The bride had actually bought the original headpiece at Hobby Lobby. It had pearls...all the same size. Her gown had lots of pearls, shiny, gold glass beads, and gold edged ribbon. I added various sized pearls and tiny gold glass beads.

        You can do a lot with "store made" headpieces. They have blank headbands that can be covered with fabric, wrapped in ribbon, or other treatments. Add a comb and your finished veil, and you're ready to go.  You can also glue floral stuff. There are some "beaded strands" that come in packages...beads/flowers on a thin plastic shaft...wrap together with white floral tape, first. This is what the manufacturer's use. Hobby Lobby has quite a few, and it seems like tiara's are going to be in this year.

        When I worked at a bridal shop, about 20 yrs ago, they marked up the veils over 300%! They really are pretty easy and inexpensive to make, especially if you buy the tulle/illusion when it is on sale. Most brides do not expect you to use 108" wide illusion for their veils...only the ones who have expensive, couture gowns...and they don't mind paying more. The veil I sent pix of only cost a little...tulle- 2yd/$.50, headpiece- $12, beads-less than $1, pearls-same, ribbon-$3, iron adhesive-$3.50, glue-$4.50. We spent $25 total, but I have lots of pearls, beads, adhesive, and glue left. I buy that stuff when I see it on sale...it lasts forever. 

        Can you imagine how much the shops make on them?! The manufacturers get their materials at cost, and have to pay for designers/sewers/etc, and they have overhead, but, like I said, the shop I worked at marked them up, big time. The owner, an elderly lady, was dating an owner of one of the bridal houses in NY.  She said she only did it to get a bigger discount on his product...and he showed her a good time when she went to the "show week" in NY.

         I never charge much for a veil....unless the bride is a real pain in the fanny....then I'll charge about 25% less than a comparable one in the shops would be.  LOL I've only done that once....She thought I should throw it in for free, and it ticked me off!  She paid it, too...LOL. 

        Veils are ridiculously expensive in the shops.  Its fun to go in and try on a dress or two, or just go in and 'window shop' to see what styles are in, and what they are charging. I had been away from the sewing business for several years, and am just getting back to it. I was amazed at how much the prices have increased.

        Try making a couple....If you want to go small, try making some for a doll; although a Barbie might be too small...you could make one for your favorite little girl...a niece, neighbor, or even donate to a school for dress up/ play time. Just have fun doing it.


        1. SAAM | | #10

          Years ago, (gosh, it's over 20 years!) I worked in a fabric store that had a specialty bridal section and I did just as you described to make veils and headpieces. I even made a wedding hat for the owner's daughter's wedding. I remember having so much fun playing with the lace and bead to create unique headpieces. Good for you charging extra for the brides who give you trouble. You know they've priced veils, and thus know they're getting a great price. I can't believe how some people have so much chutzpah, and to think you'd just give away your work! That bride must have been out of her mind.Sherry

    2. Josefly | | #4

      Beautiful job. Thank you for your answer, and for the photos. By comparison, the veil I'm making should be much simpler - it will be attached to a simple, undecorated, but hidden comb, and not so many beads will be used, although it seems a long way around the edges of the two tiers of 108-inch wide tulle when sewing the beads on by hand. I'm going to try the glue!

  2. sewchris703 | | #2

    A little background:  I work in a bridal shop, doing alterations, restyle gowns, resize gowns, etc.  And make veils.  We use a bridal glue which dries clear and is very flexible when putting pearls, rhinestones, and crystals on veils.  I chart out the pattern on paper, lay clear plastic (dry cleaner bags work great) over the paper and the veil on top of the plastic.  That way I can see where to put the beads and I can peel the plastic away from the veil if the glue should happen to stick.  I don't know where you could get bridal glue.  You could try a craft store like Michael's or a store that sells beading supplies.


    1. Josefly | | #5

      Thank you sewchris, for the recommendation. I think I will have to try the glue, since I'm afraid the nylon thread will come undone and I envision all the beads dropping off before the bride gets down the aisle! I have access to Hancock Fabrics, Joann's, and Michael's, so hopefully I can find the bridal glue, which I've also seen recommended online, but without a brand name. Thank you also for sharing your tips about marking out the bead pattern and covering it with a sheet of plastic before gluing. The bride wants beads only every 2-1/2 inches just near the edge, so I won't need to draw the pattern, but I will need the plastic. How long does it take for the glue to dry?Would there be any advantage to sewing the beads on, as I've done so far on the "practice veil", and then dabbing a tiny dot of glue onto the knot underneath to keep it from coming loose? The process sounds much easier, though, just to glue the bead on directly.

      Edited 3/13/2008 4:36 am ET by Josefly

      1. sewchris703 | | #7

        As you found out, nylon thread is a pain to work with.  I won't work with it.  I use thread the color of the tulle when doing beadwork on a tulle gown.  And thread shows on the veil so I glue them.  That's the only time I'll glue beadwork.  On gowns, I always sew them. 

        The glue doesn't take a lot of time to dry.  I try and lay the tulle out flat so I do the whole veil at one time.  That way I don't have to line up the pattern and by the time I'm at the end the start is almost dry.  Then I leave it laying on the table while I move on to the next gown.  Then come back, gather, put on the comb, and lightly steam.  If you don't have access to a steamer, you'll have to iron the tulle before gluing on the beadwork.  Don't let the iron get too hot, the tulle will melt.  No higher than polyester (or even lower, depending on your iron).  The iron I use will steam on low settings.


        1. Josefly | | #8

          I had to iron my tulle, and it was 108" wide, all that Hancock Fabrics had in the ivory color. Then I had such a problem laying it out - no table big enough, of course - and getting the tulle to fold down the lengthwise center without waves and ripples, so I strung up a piece of strong string in my living room, from one door jamb to another, and draped the tulle over that so I could get the selvages together evenly, clothes-pinned the tulle to the string every foot or so, then took the whole thing down, string and all, to lay it out on my cutting board. While it was hanging on the string, I went back over it with steam from my iron. I think it looks okay now, so I'm trying to be careful not to wrinkle it while I sew on it.Went to Michael's this am asking for bridal glue. Blank faces, but they directed me to a wall full of adhesives. No labels said "bridal glue". I should've googled it before I went out, but that would've been too smart. Anyway I've come home with something that says it's clear, washable, acid- and lignin- free, and quick-drying, and will try that on a remnant of the tulle.Thank goodness this is a "practice veil" and doesn't have to be perfect or even completely beaded. The bride is coming home this weekend to see her hairdresser and wants to take the veil with her. Also, I don't actually have any of the bridal fabric in hand yet to match it for sure - just a description - ivory. And the bride wasn't sure how long she wants it or even the style for sure -she showed me four pictures of different veils that she likes. Just brought me some beads and asked that I sew them around the edge. But without knowing how long to make it! I have to laugh a little. Ah, well. Thus the practice veil. Another thing I've had a hard time tracking down is the clear plastic comb to attach to the veil. Most instructions I've read recommend a 4-inch comb, and all I've come up with is about 3-1/2 inches. That worked on the veil I made for my daughter, but it wasn't a heavy veil - only one tier, finger-tip length, 72-inch tulle, narrow satin ribbon. This one is two tiers and will be a little heavier. We'll see if it works this weekend.Thanks so much for sharing your experience with me.

          Edited 3/13/2008 11:58 am ET by Josefly

          1. MaryinColorado | | #13

            Do you have an Ulta Beauty Supply store in your area?  They have a large variety of hair accessories and may have what you need.

            If you have a serger, and the book Serger Secrets it tells several methods of attatching beads, either prestrung, or as you want to do, one at a time with spacing in between. 

            Basically, you do it similar to adding a cord edge so could do it with a sewing machine too.  You stitch along over the cord (or fishing line, YLI invisible polyester thread, etc),  stopping and adding a bead as you go along.  You could use the zig zag stitch on a regular sewing machine. 

            Now, remember to do something special for yourself when you're finished!  You deserve it!!!  Mary

            (You might be able to use #4/5 mercerized crochet cotton.  I got mine on a spool in a plastic/cardboard wrap for heirloom sewing at my dealers.  (Virkgarn is the brand I have for what it's worth.).  (I use it for inside pintucks for support, etc.)

            Edited 3/14/2008 2:19 pm by MaryinColorado

          2. Josefly | | #14

            Oh, Mary, you're so thoughtful; I do plan to sew something for myself now that the bride has picked up the practice veil.Thank you for your tips, too. Some questions: are you suggesting the crochet thread as an alternative for the bead-carrying cord to be zig-zagged over? I'm going to try your suggested technique. Wish I had a serger, but I don't at present.For this veil, I hand-sewed the beads one-by-one, just like sewing on too many buttons, each separately tied off. (The beads are transparent and miniscule, the thread is transparent and hair-like, and the tulle is almost transparent. I was going more by feel than eyesight. There were times I felt like I was doing imaginary sewing! Like a charade.) The bride didn't want any kind of hem or trim around the edge except for the beads, so don't think she'd want any visible thread showing in the spaces between beads. The beads are 2-1/2" apart. The method you've described - that would leave a narrow-hem-look, wouldn't it? I wish I could see the veil she's got in mind. We'll see, though. I didn't really get to talk to her when she picked up the veil - she was on the way to a caterer's tasting. But she's to have her hair done tomorrow and will talk to the hairdresser about the veil, so we should be able to get some decisions, about fullness, length, and beading, after that. I could end up making a quite different final veil. I really want to get started on the "real" veil soon, even though I have 6 weeks. I don't like to be rushed at the last minute. And I like to allow time for those dreaded mistakes.I really appreciate your tips.Ed to add: Oh, yes, I forgot - Ulta. Great idea. I'll check it out.

            Edited 3/14/2008 6:09 pm ET by Josefly

          3. MaryinColorado | | #15

            Yes, I remember now you said she didn't want a visible hem.  Sorry, I got carried away thinking about how I might do it by machine.  I can't imagine stitching each tiny invisible bead on the invisible fabric, it's mind boggling and oooh, the stiff fingers afterwards!!!  So the crochet thread would show, hmm.

             You are a gem for making it to her specifications!  I know we want all brides to be thrilled with thier weddings, so I can understand the need to please her for her special day.  Whether she's a relative or a client.

            If it will work for you, the invisible YLI polyester (or fishing line which is sometimes used inside a rolled hem for strength, but might be too stiff for a veil) couched under a zig zag stitch so you can bead the YLI every two inches might work.  If you are worried about strength, you could use two layers of the YLI or knot it at each bead stop.  It would still cut down on the time and hand sewing for you. 

            I'm sure it will be beautiful whatever technique you decide on.  You've given me so many great tips and ideas, I'm happy to help you for a change!  Mary


          4. Josefly | | #16

            I appreciate the sympathy! Lol. I do very much want to get the veil as near to the bride's vision as possible; she's the daughter of one of my best friends. I volunteered to do it; but you know how things sometimes start out simple and get more complex? Beading wasn't mentioned in the beginning. Yes, my hands are stiff and sore, but I'm also enjoying doing it, and learning all these tips in the process. Thank you for suggesting the polyester invisible thread. I - finally - found some and some preliminary experimentation gives me hope that this thread knots better than the nylon, and holds the knot. So I think this will ease the process a great deal. It's also finer, more hair-like, and so any ends left should not show. I'm very klutzy with the glue, it seems, so I'd rather sew than fool with it. Now I'm eager to get the bride's comments, likes and dislikes, on the practice veil, so I can get started on the real one.Have you been doing any embroidery or bobbin-work lately?

          5. MaryinColorado | | #17

            I've embroidered several dragonflys onto some hand dyed fabric for a friend, now I just need to make them into "patches" so she can put them on something if she wants to.  The metallic threads turned out to be fun to play with although I've never cared for the prima donnas before.  I'm trying to find her a simple lavender Tshirt to put some more on, but no luck so far.  Next I'm going to try one that looks like stained glass and stitch it onto sheer organza.  If it turns out, I'll buy a little metal hoop to stitch it to so she can hang it in a window.  (I've never seen her home so don't know what else to do with them.)

            I embroidered a pale blue two tone Celtic butterfly onto a boring brown long sleeved knit top.  Put some Bulldogs on red Tshirts for the grandkids as it is the oldest grandson's high school mascot.

            Big project coming up: soft silky light rose fabric and a matching sheer to make embroidered applique rose buds, petals, and center (the smallest is about 4", the finished large rose will cover across the back of my favorite long denim coat.  Then there will be meandering stems and leaves down to the hem.  If that turns out, I might add some deep rose velvet to the collar.  The coat is unlined and calf length and I always get compliments on it.  I have always wanted to make it more feminine but always chicken out.  We'll see.....

            I had given up on making my own clothes for a few years.  I just finished an ankle length rayon sundress that fits!!!  Hooray!  Just need to hem it.  I've been shopping for more fabric to make a few more of these.

            Thanks for asking!  Everyone here at Gatherings is so positive, it encouraged me to really get busy sewing for myself again.  I was really in a rut. 

            I am a major klutz with glue!  I consider it a necessary evil, ha ha.  Thank goodness for fabric glue sticks and a product that I think was called Glue Baste It with a needlenose tip.  I don't know what I would use if I wasn't going to stitch over it.  I've always done alot of crafts, painting, sewing, etc, but forget anything to do with glue, I make a mess.  My kids and grandkids think it's hysterical.  Mary

          6. Josefly | | #18

            Wow, you have been busy. I love dragonflies too. Your denim coat is going to be pretty - the fabrics and colors you've chosen sound just right and very feminine.Did you find sewing on the rayon for your sundress challenging at all? Does the serger make it easier? I find it difficult to lay out and cut rayon; even if you use a rotary blade, the fabric wants to shift, so that just putting the selvages together doesn't seem to assure that the fold is on the straight grain.I'm envious of all you productive stitchers! And congrats on sewing something for yourself and getting a good fit. I'm determined to do the same!

            Edited 3/16/2008 1:48 am ET by Josefly

          7. MaryinColorado | | #19

            Believe it or not, rayon is my favorite fabric to sew and to wear.  It breathes and doesn't wrinkle and drapes so well.  It is a bit of a challenge to cut, I do use the rotary cutter and sometimes cut one piece at a time rather than two layers.  (If it's too slippery, sometimes spray starch helps keep the fold in place). 

            I  prefer the heavier rayon fabrics which are harder to find these days.  When I went to Hancock's, all they had was very light blouseweight that you could see straight through.  I'd love to find some more Hawaiian or Bali batik rayons that are heavy enough for summer shirts and dresses. 

            I use the serger to finish the edges and sometimes use the safety stitch for seaming and overcasting in one step.  I really prefer seaming on the sewing machine, especially anything with tight curves like armholes!  Then I go back and serge finish the seam allowances.  I like the coverstitch for hemming too. 

            I love embellishing with the serger because it will take those heavy threads and make magic.  It also makes neat, tiny pintucks with the rolled hem, lace joining, ribbon insertion, etc. so you can even do heirloom sewing with it.  I don't know how I ever managed without it.  Mary


          8. Josefly | | #20

            I love to wear rayon, too. I think it's my favorite fabric of all. I love cotton and silk, but the drape and coolness of rayon are wonderful. But sewing it - I'm not sure. I did make 7 pairs of pajama or lounge pants out of Tencel, which I believe is a type of rayon, for the men in my family for Christmas. It was a nice heavy, corded cloth that made it easier to lay out straight. It had a slightly sueded finish to it. But it didn't want to slide across the top of my machine very well, and my hands got very tense and tired trying to guide it through under the needle. I really wished for a serger, and the expertise to use it, when I was making those pants, because I had to flat-fell the seams I could, and bind the others, to prevent raveling. I've got lots of scraps of that fabric left, though, enough to make several a-line or gored skirts! One of my upcoming projects for myself.It's way too late. I'm going to put my finally sleepy head to bed now.Joan

          9. NansiSews | | #21

            I've caught this thread  on the late side, but I have found that the glues like FabriTac can be thinned a bit with acetone ( some nail polish removers) and I've had much better luck getting beads onto tulle without such a mess.  Maybe this will still be of help to someone.

          10. Josefly | | #22

            Do you add the acetone to the bottle, or put some of the glue into a container and mix the acetone with it? I tried the latter, but the acetone didn't mix well, and I still had a gloppy mess. How do you mix it? Do you do it in small quantities, because it seems the glue dries very quickly, before the job can be finished.I used a pin to pick up each bead and dip it into the glue, but it was difficult to control how much glue I picked up, and I thought it didn't look nice when it dried. Tweezers would've worked better, but I imagined the glue getting all over the tweezers and spending too much time between setting each bead cleaning off the tweezers and whatever other tool I used to hold the bead down while I removed the tweezers. I honestly got too frustrated to try to figure out a good technique. I'd like to know how, though, so I can use the glue for other projects. Thank you so much for your help.

          11. NansiSews | | #23

            I added it directly to the bottle a little at a time.  I had an old loop turner (that the latch had broken off, but I saved for all kinds of odd jobs like this one) that I used to stir it up really well.  That worked fine.

            You could also use a smaller old fabric paint bottle (washed out, of course) to mix your own smaller blend if you want to have the original full strength for something. Or you might be able to purchase smaller bottles with fine tips thru a sewing supply (I think I had gotten mine from Nancy's Notions about 5 - 10 years ago) or maybe a craft supply place.  If you can get one of these, you can apply directly to a pearl or bead held with tweezers or what I call the "lick and stick fingertip method".  Or the blob and dabb with a pin method works, too.

            You want to add enough acetone so that when you dab it on, you can pull away without the hot string cheese affect following the bead to the fabric.

          12. Josefly | | #24

            Yes, that "hot string cheese effect" was a problem for me. I think the glue, on being exposed to the air, develops that problem quickly. I'll try mixing it in the bottle. I saw some of those tiny-opening bottles somewhere, I've forgotten, but maybe it was Michael's. Thank you again for your help.

          13. Josefly | | #25

            THANK GOODNESS! I've heard from the bride about the practice veil, and she's decided she doesn't want the beads - they really didn't show up well on the illusion. Her hairdresser convinced her she wants the narrow satin ribbon trim on the edge instead, and that is something I know I can do.Thanks to all of you who've given me help on this. I've learned some new things that'll be useful in the future, if not necessarily on this veil.

          14. MaryinColorado | | #26

            Yahoo!!!  What wonderful news for you!  It has been fun and interesting to read the input on this.  It's so great to learn from each other.  Though, I think I'm untrainable with glue.

            Every time I read or thought about the glue problems, that song "Work Your Fingers to the Bone, What Do You Get?  Bony Fingers!!!"  kept going through my head.  Glad that won't be popping into my head and making me giggle at inoportune times anymore!  I hope!  (In my mind, it was about sticky fingers from the glue!)  What a  nightmare! ha ha,  Mary

            Edited 3/18/2008 11:30 am by MaryinColorado

          15. Josefly | | #27

            Ha, ha! Your imagination was right on target, too - that glue and I were not made for each other. I started wondering how many veils I would spoil by dragging strings of glue over them, and I began to fear that I would get my fingers stuck together like with Crazy Glue, and I just put it right away. But NansiSews' idea about using the little bottles with small openings is a good idea, so next time I go to Michael's...Thanks for the laugh. My arthritic fingers are gnarly enough!

          16. MaryinColorado | | #28

            Do you own one of those little wax spas?  Dipping my hands about eight times in the warm wax, letting the wax set for a minute between each dip, then putting the mitts on really relieves my stiffness and pain well.  The lavendar scented wax is so relaxing too!  It makes my dry skin all soft and dewy too!  I just don't know what I'd do without some of my little luxuries. 

            My thumbs were frozen and I thought about joint replacement, the waxer helped me so much it was quite the miracle!

          17. Josefly | | #29

            No, I don't have one of those. I'm so glad to hear that it's helpful. I do have some micro-waveable mitts which I haven't used in a long time. I'll pull those out and use them. You are very thoughtful to mention it.

          18. scrubble4 | | #30

            Josefly:  "THANK GOODNESS! I've heard from the bride about the practice veil, and she's decided she doesn't want the beads "

            Oh I am soooooo pleased.  I kept aching for you knowing you wanted to do right by your friend, but also knowing the tension when we step outside our comfort zone.  So now you have the best of both worlds, learned some new stuff without needing to traumatize yourself by applying it for a presentation. 

            Have a good night's sleep. 

            Oh my Mom used to do the wax dip thing.  She really liked it, but she went to a salon to have it done.  I didn't know you could buy a home one.  Even the micro mitts sound like they would be a balm to the sore joints.

            Take care Srubble4

          19. Josefly | | #31

            Thank you - it's so nice finding people who understand. Yes, I'm celebrating the lifting of tension - the ribbon is so much easier to do than the individual beads. But a challenge is good for all of us, and for me, it takes that sometimes to make myself try something new. I'm still going to play around to see what I can do with the tips I got for putting on beads.Now I'm hunting down the narrow ribbon in just the right ivory to match the gown fabric. The bride has her next fitting scheduled in a couple of weeks, so I want to mail it to her so she can try it on with the dress, to be sure it works. I saw some satin rat-tail cord in just the right color, but don't know how using that, in place of the ribbon, would change the hang of the veil, so don't want to recommend it to the bride.

          20. MaryinColorado | | #32

            http://www.marthapullen.com has silk ribbon in many widths, (and colors too for anyone else who may be interested).  I don't know how long it would take to ship but they might do overnight shipping,  They are out of Huntsville, Alabama, I think. It's been awhile, and my memory is slipping a bit.    Hooray!  You are on the home stretch now!  Mary

          21. Josefly | | #33

            That's nice to know. I'll keep them in mind. Being in Huntsville, it wouldn't take too long to get here...I did find some ribbon though, that I think is going to be okay. Gail K Fabrics, here in Atlanta, has lots of evening-wear and wedding fabrics and trims, and they dug through their boxes of bridal trims and found some for me. They don't keep it out with the other ribbon, so I asked them and lo and behold, they had some that appears about as close in color as I will find, I think. I'm today practicing applying the ribbon - the bride wants almost no curve at the corners, and I'm having to experiment to find the smallest curve I can use and still get the ribbon to lie flat. I don't think a squared-off corner would look right. What do you think? There's another store here that sells only ribbons, and has classes in how to do things with them - making flowers, trimming hats, etc. It's not close to me, but it's a treat to go into. I wish they had a web-site, though.

          22. MaryinColorado | | #34

            I think the veils look so much nicer with a curve, they seem to drape better than the sharp cornered ones would. 

             With such narrow ribbon it seems it would be impossible to miter the corners and they would be thick.

             If you cut it at the corners, you'd still have thick edges where you have to turn it under to prevent fraying.  It seems if there is no curve, they usually have wide lace to hide the corners edge. 

            I don't know as I haven't made them.  The lady who made my sister's bridal veil in the 60's had a very lucrative business only making veils!  Who knows?  Maybe this will be the first of many? 

            I'm so glad that she decided not to do the beaded edge.  I think you are a gem for ascertaining that your friend's daughter is a very happy bride!  Mary

          23. Josefly | | #35

            Thank you for the kind words. I think the same of all the folks on this forum who sew for grandkids, children, friends.

        2. Josefly | | #9

          Grrr. A very frustrating time with the glue (Fabri-Tac). These beads are very small, and it's hard to get enough glue on them without getting too much. Tried putting the bead on a pin and touching it to the glue, but that didn't work for me. I wonder if the bridal glue is really easier to use.So I tried to sew the beads on with silk-finish cotton thread as close to the color of the tulle as I could find. That works - it knots well and can be cut very close to the knots - but the beads are transparent and not very sparkly, and the thread deadened the beads and made them look almost like not-very-pretty pearls. Soooo, back to the nylon thread, which doesn't change the look of the beads at all. After sewing on too many beads (my learning curve must be long and shallow), I finally found a way of knotting that I think will hold. If the beads stay on while fiddling with the veil and the future bride's hair, I will probably use this technique on the "real" veil. I expect the bride is not going to be happy with the beads she chose - they hardly show at all - and I happen to have some that are a little more iridescent and sparkly, but don't know if they will go with the beads on her dress. This may be the look she's trying for, but I don't think it adds much to the veil.I'm so glad I did a practice veil - the tulle seems to shorten A LOT when gathered, so I had enough tulle to cut a longer tier. It's nice to do this experimenting now - there are still 6 weeks until the wedding, so I want to get all the kinks worked out now. Hoping, anyway.

          1. sewchris703 | | #11

            You can also "steam" veils in the bathroom while you take a shower.  Just make sure that the veil soesn't touch the wall while it's drying afterwards.   You want it to dry quickly and evenly. 

            I also use serger tweezers to dip the beads into the glue and apply the beads to the veil.  And a long quilting pin or stiletto in the other hand helps to make sure the bead sticks to the veil instead of the tweezers.  It is a slow process.

            I'm glad that sewing them on is working for you.  Another thought is that after tying the thread, you could put a small dot of glue on the thread to make sure that it won't come untied.

            Tulle gathers up very small and even if it doesn't, the gathers can be sqeezed together to fit the comb.  I wrap the comb in a length of tulle, about 2-3" wide, first and then sew the veil to that.  1/4" wide satin ribbon works as well but doesn't cover the top of the comb like the tulle does.  Wrapping the comb makes it easier to sew the veil to it.


          2. Josefly | | #12

            Chris, thank you so much for your tips. I've wrapped the comb for the "practice" veil in 3/8" satin ribbon, and it covered the comb pretty well. I was able to tuck the ends of the ribbon around the ends of the comb and through the wrapped part using a tapestry needle.About attaching the tulle to the comb - last time I did this I had a finished veil in my hands to see how to do it, but I don't have that anymore. I seem to remember that the gathered edge of the tulle is sewn to the top edge of the comb, upside down, so that the tulle falls back down over the comb and hides the comb completely. But now I'm confused - should it be sewn to the inside top edge or the outside top edge? The veil will be worn on the back of the head underneath an up-done hairstyle (a bun).I've sewed the beads onto the veil with the nylon thread, and the knots look like they'll hold. I don't like the look of the beads - they don't have enough sparkle, and I don't like the way they're spaced regularly around the edge; it adds nothing to the veil - but it's what the bride asked for. I don't think she'll like it, though, when she sees it, but that's why we're doing a practice veil.

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