A bee veil is a necessary part of a beekeeper's gear. A bee veil fits around the crown of a broadbrimmed hat and secures at the collar to protect the face and neck from bee stings. Made of stiff netting or screen, veils may have wire hoops to hold their shape and weighted collars to keep them in place. A simple model consists of a stiff netting tube with elastic and the top and a drawstring at the bottom.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Broad-brimmed hat
- Tape measure
- Stiff netting or nylon window screening
- 1/4-inch-wide elastic or elastic cord
- 1 yard of cotton or nylon cord
- Drawstring lock or fastener
- Large safety pin
Cut a piece of netting or nylon window screen 36 inches by 28 inches. Place the short sides together and sew a 5/8-inch seam. Use a sewing machine or needle and thread. Keep handmade stitches small to avoid openings that bees can get through.
Fold 3 inches along the top edge. Sew a hem 5/8 of an inch from the raw edge to form a casing for elastic. Measure around the crown of the hat and cut a piece of elastic or elastic cord. Use a safety pin to thread the elastic through the channel. Tie elastic in a knot so it fits snugly around the crown of the hat.
Turn over 3 inches along the bottom edge of the veil. Sew a hem 5/8 of an inch from the raw edge to form a casing for a drawstring. Thread a 36-inch cord through the channel. Add a drawstring lock and knot the cord. Cut off excess cord.
Place the veil over the crown of the hat. Check that the elastic and netting fits snugly leaving no gaps for bees to enter. Distribute the netting evenly over the hat brim.
Try on the hat and pull the netting down over your shirt collar. Pull the collar up and tighten the drawstring around the collar leaving no gaps or openings. Check that the netting is evenly gathered around the collar. Gently tug the netting so it stands away from your head and neck.
Tips and warnings
- Use a sewing machine for tight uniform stitches. Double stitch all seams for extra strength.
- Purchase suitable nylon netting or screen from a hardware store or Army-Navy surplus store. Larger fabric stores often carry utility fabrics.
- Dressmaker's nylon netting is not heavy enough for this application. A torn bee veil could result in facial stings.
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