PART 2 – the work.
It’s not that hard! Just time consuming, so grab a friend and do it in half the time. Winner gets to wear them first!
Okay, first things first. Get all your supplies.
Check part one for the details and Amazon links, but a quick run down:
Copper wire & cutters
Glue and glue gun
Wire coat hanger (or other thin wire)
and lastly, all the feathers (save 9-12 extra nice ones for the end!)
At the very end, you’ll also need a piece of crafting felt in a similar color to your feathers, and straps/bra straps to hold them up.
Cut an 88″ piece of copper wire. As you uncoil, work to get it flat with no kinks (it’s not going to show, but will help your OCD, you’re welcome)
Fold it in half, and start to bend each half into a cupid’s bow shape.
Exact measurements are not required, but my tiles are 18″ for reference.
Grab your wire coat hanger (or other, more flexible wire), and cut 2 pieces the width of the gap in the center of the wings.
Glue the pieces to connect the center as shown. If you have wire, wrap it around in the same spots, and glue it down.
This will give the frame stability from bouncing in and out.
It will also give you a spot to clip the back piece onto for back shots.
Wrap and glue the black felt over the exposed copper. This will give it even more stability (as the glue that holds the cross bars will eventually fail) – so do a good job wrapping (or don’t be lazy like me and get wire to wrap around instead)
Grab your 2 yards of fabric, and cut down the center vertically, one for each wing. Again, I was lazy and used fabric I had, but should have gone out of my way for a more sheer tulle.
Lay the two strips on the floor next to each other, and lay your prepared copper frame on top.
Fold the fabric over the copper and start gluing
Take care to glue both sides. Since this is the whole base, you’ll want to make sure the fabric is ON THERE.
I glued a strip on the top of the copper, as well, once I got it off the floor and onto a stand
Lay out your assembled frame. You’ll need sharp scissors (trust me). But go ahead and trim the excess fabric you folded over the frame – any loose fabric there can go. As you can see in my example, I got nice and close to the copper. So feel free to be heavy with the glue, too.
For my method, I also trim the fabric to be closer to the final shape of the wings. Feel free to change it up after you’ve watched or read this tutorial, depending on the size and how much you want to spend on feathers (hint, this still isn’t cheap!)
(note my unfelted center piece – don’t be like me, do that part first – it helps). Once they’re ready to wear, the removable bra straps can just be hooked to themselves around the frame.
FINALLY – WE ARE READY TO PUT THE FEATHERS ON THERE!
The feathers can be prepped for a super dreamy effect. They curve gently, and you can bend them a bit more by working the stem slowly so it doesn’t crease. They do arrive pretty flat, so if you like the curviness of my burgundy and ivory sets, it took a whole lot of bending feathers to shape them that way!
I like my feathers curving outward and to the left for the left wing, and outward to the right for the right. But this is all individual and you don’t have to, they’ll still look great and fluffy! (I also like the back side to bend toward the front a little, it makes it look like they’re hugging the wearer) ♥
Attaching the feathers is simple. Place a dime-ish sized dot of glue on the stem, but in the feathers (not on the bare quill, just before it).
Place on the fabric while applying a little tension to the fabric. You’ll burn yourself if you try to press the glue dot onto the fabric directly – not from experience or anything. (they make silicone thimbles for this job). The glue holds almost instantly, and sets up within a few more seconds.
It’s pretty straight-forward till you get to the top, where you can start to turn them as you’ll see in the clips below, plus the funny time-lapse at the bottom where it took me 6.5 minutes to make these!
When you get to the top...
the pattern I like for the top...
FINALLY DONE!!! ...with the front side 🙁
I ran out of feathers and had to order more (a total of 500). The clips below show how I pinch in the center
(making the back way easier/faster to do)
I didn’t take any pictures of me doing the back. The extra feathers took A MONTH to come. I did do some time lapse though and you can see the placement on the back side toward the end of that video at the bottom.
You’ll just want to secure the safety pin with glue after you pinch in the center. Then glue the folds of the fabric in the tails to itself so it doesn’t come apart (who wants to clone out glue dots?).
If any feathers look weird after you fold the fabric (usually you’ll have one or two right on the edges that doesn’t want to lay the right way), use the hot glue gun tip to heat the glue and move the feather.
And Finally, finally. The back piece. Use the gap in your feathers as judgement to cut your felt and glue the feathers. As mentioned at the top, you should have saved a bunch of super plumey feathers for this. I glued them on while the wings were on the dress form and think it turned out awesome.
AND THATS IT! I would looooove to see if anyone uses this diy to make a set (or 3!). Tag me on my socials if you do!