Feather Tutorial

So as I mentioned the other day I’m decorating our basement for a Masquerade themed birthday party and I needed some ideas. I had written Heather over at Dollar Store Crafts begging for help and she came up with a brilliant post rounding up projects to make a candy themed party that I think we will go with. Bright colored candy plus masks equals good sugared up fun for all.

As a part of our decorations I wanted lots of feathers, but I don’t want to spend a ton of money on them and the pretty feathers I’m wanting aren’t cheap. So I decided to find a tutorial for making them out of paper. Sadly? I wasn’t too impressed with what I found. Fortunately I’m resourceful so I pulled out my stack of card stock and went to work. I free handed a design and away I went.

I figured since I wanted a pattern and tutorial, maybe someone else would too so I’m here to share my technique with you.

Supplies: Card stock, glue, florists wire, pens, pencils, markers, and the template The template is optional, but I’m sharing it in case you want it.

These feathers were the final result of my work.

First take a piece of card stock and fold it over to a width of about 2 inches. This width will vary depending on the size you want your feather to be.

Cut it off and cover one side with glue. Cut a section of florists wire to just an inch or so longer than your piece of paper. and lay it on the glue. I curved mine around a bit in order to get the curved center quill like a feather would have. You can kind of see that in the pictures.

Fold over the unglued side of the paper and press down well.

I used a marker lid to press along the wire so it was raised up higher than the paper. This makes for a very nice seal and gives a more 3-dimensional effect.

Which you can kind of see here in this picture.

I then traced over the wire with a colored pencil. This makes the center of the feather much more visible.

Here you see the outline of the feather drawn on the paper. Cut it out. No don’t stop what you’re doing silly, cut the feather out of the paper.

Draw your little spines (I have no idea what they’re called but the fluffy things) on the paper and now you have a nice representation of a feather right?

You can of course stop there and call it good, but I’m a perfectionist so here’s where I took it one step further. I very carefully cut dozens of thin slivers along the edge of the feather so it looks…. well feathered.

You can see here how the edges are sort of rough and it really gives a nice effect that pictures don’t do justice to.

The sky’s the limit to what kind of feathers you can make. I’ve included templates for the red and blue feathers, but if you get creative you can make one like the black one my sister in law made as well. I made a couple of these without the wire, but I like how bendable and 3D the wire ones are.

Cheap simple pretty decorations for anything you want to use feathers on.

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2 thoughts on “Feather Tutorial

  1. WOW. That black feather is AMAZING!! I get so irritated when I read instructions, since they leave a lot to the imagination: but not YOURS!! Very instructional. I’m wondering how expensive it would be to use mulberry paper. I was selling “tear bears” while I was in Florida. I would cut out the shape of a bear, then use a wire brush to FLUFF the edges outward. The problem was that it looked too “feathery” for a bear…….but just right for a feather! lol

    My sewing machine is still sitting next to my tool box. *sob*

    • I took a lot of these pictures with my left hand (with a right handed camera) so I could have my right hand in the picture. I hate tutorials that leave too much to the imagination. I’ve never bought mulberry paper so I couldn’t say, but for the smallest feathers you can get two double thickness and one single thickness feathers from an 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of paper or 5-6 of the single thickness without the wire sandwiched in there. I would think these would be beautiful in that paper from what I saw of your bears. (which I also loved btw)
      I will pass on your comment on the black feather to its maker- it happens to be my favorite too! My younger SIL is very talented 🙂

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