Tutorials

How to Make Paper Feathers

I went on a little bit of a decorating frenzy for Halloween, and now I can’t stop!

I couldn’t get the idea of making some feather decorations for Thanksgiving out of my head, and I realized a gaggle of paper feathers would be the perfect #turkeytablescapes project!

how_to_make_paper_feathers_01

These are super easy, and they look so pretty in a group.

I put a cluster in a floral arrangement, but there really are unlimited ways to use your feathers. Use them as gift tags or place holders at the dinner table. Hot glue a bunch around a wreath. Glue them around a mason jar and add a tealight inside. Thread them on some yarn and hang from a chandlier or make a garland!

paper_feathers_02Step 1
Gather materials! At the very least, you’ll need:

  • paper- I like to use scrapbook paper because it comes in a lot of pretty colors, prints, and textures. You want something slightly heavier… you don’t want floppy feathers!
  • craft knife or scissors – I mostly use a craft knife because I think it’s faster, but I always keep a pair of scissors handy as well.

Optional Materials:

  • cutting mat
  • glue gun
  • floral wire

 

paper_feathers_03Step 2
Cut a feather shape out of your paper. It can be fat, skinny, short, or tall. I just freehand it. I like to make all different shapes or sizes, but if you want a uniform size, you can make  a template and cut them all the same. It all depends on what you want to do!

 

paper_feathers_04Step 3
Score along the center of the feather on the back side of the paper- use something pointy but not super sharp. I like to use the tip of a closed pair of scissors or the end of a mechanical pencil with the lead retracted. You could also use a chopstick or a bamboo skewer.

The line doesn’t have to be super straight- sometimes I do curved lines, squiggly lines, or straight lines. Again, I want variety!

 

paper_feathers_05Step 4
Gently fold the paper along the fold line. Fold towards the back of the paper.

 

paper_feathers_06It gives a little extra dimension to the feather.

paper_feathers_07Step 5
Make a series of cuts along one side of the feather. I try to cut about half the distance from the center fold. The cuts should be angled towards the tip of the feather.

 

paper_feathers_08Step 6
Make the cuts all the way down one side of the feather. They should be as close together as possible, but they don’t need to be super uniform. I just hack away at it with the knife like a psychopath. Be careful, though! Don’t lose any fingers.

 

paper_feathers_09Step 7
Repeat for the other side of the feather.

 

paper_feathers_10Step 8
I suppose you could stop at this point if you like the way it looks, but I like to go an extra step.

I find this is easier to do with scissors, so here’s where I switch. Cut along the sides of the feathers again, except this time, instead of an angled cut towards the tip, I do more of a 90 degree cut.

 

paper_feathers_11Step 9
Repeat this the same way you did with the first round of cuts. Again, I just go at it quick and random. CUTCUTCUTCUTCUT! If there are spots that need a little extra attention when I’m done with the psycho cutting, I go back with a little more attention to detail.

 

paper_feathers_12Step 10
Now that’s a pretty snazzy feather, if I do say so myself! Depending on what you want to do with your feathers, you could stop here.

I wanted to use mine in a floral arrangement, so I added stems…

 

paper_feathers_13Step 11
Put a few globs of glue on the back of the feather along the fold line.

 

paper_feathers_14Step 12
Put the wire stem into place- be careful not to burn yourself!

 

paper_feathers_15Step 13
Rinse and repeat!

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I combined my feathers with a cool pitcher style vase and some autumn floral pieces from Jo-Ann.

Check out more #turkeytablescapes on Jo-Ann’s Celebrate the Season site and the Jo-Ann holiday craft catalog!
Don’t forget your coupon either- this one will get you 50% off!
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This post brought to you by Jo-Ann. All opinions are 100% mine.

4 thoughts on “How to Make Paper Feathers

  1. That is a perfect solution for those who have allergy but still like feather. As I have an allergic reaction on feather, I will be very happy to make them with the help of paper. They are really cute.

  2. Too choppy. Feathers are delicate in appearance and when touched. Unless feathers have been manipulated in some way, such as weather or a bird fight, even old age, they just don’t look like what you have created. But good effort, and thanks for sharing. Cheers, from a fellow artist.

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