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How to wire wrap a feather - method 1

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Picture of How to wire wrap a feather - method 1
This is a relatively simple way to wrap wire around the shaft of a feather to make it easy to add to a piece of jewelry.

You will wrap wire around the feather shaft as well as part of the wire, which creates a nice tight wrap that prevents the feather from falling out.
 
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Step 1: Gather tools and materials

Picture of Gather tools and materials
You will need:

- feather
- 26 gauge wire - your local craft supply store should carry this
- wire cutters
- round-nose pliers
- flat-nose or chain-nose pliers (I used chain-nose)

A note about pliers:

Really, you could do this all with a single pair of needle-nose pliers, the kind you get at a hardware store. You won’t be able to get perfectly round loops, but if you don’t mind the look of a square-ish loop, go for it (I don’t have photos of this). You could also form the loops by wrapping the wire around a thin stick, like a bamboo skewer; the pliers just help hold the wire still while you wrap it.

Also: most pliers not intended for jewelery-making have ridges/serrations on their jaws. These will mar the wire, which is a look you  might like, but if not, wrap some tape (electrical, duct, whatever) over the serrated parts to protect the wire.
AngelaJamene made it!28 days ago

Thank you for posting this! We find lots of feathers on our property (among other things) and this is so far my favorite thing I've done with them! These ones are some rougher medium sized ones that I cleaned and hadn't regroomed but I loved the way they turned out with the bells and looser wrapping.

I couldn't have done it without you! Thank you again, this technique can make such a variety of styles :)

Photo on 2014-06-25 at 17.05.jpg
Great, clear directions! Delicate work. Thanks.
Oh my gosh. I've had a few gorgeous red robin feathers I wanted to do something with and this is perfecttttttt
maevonnie2 years ago
Awesome, I love making my own jewelry! Thanks for the post. Just as a reminder, be careful of using real bird feathers because they could hold the canine parvovirus, which would affect any dogs or other pets that you have.
jfeathersmith (author)  maevonnie2 years ago
The feathers I've used have either come from my own birds, which have had almost no contact with dogs, or they've come from commercial feather providers, which sterilize the feathers.

If you have a source for realistic looking artificial feathers, I would love to know about it!
Barrettkg3 years ago
Great pictures. This 'ible would have been impossible without them.
jfeathersmith (author)  Barrettkg3 years ago
Thanks! I'm glad they worked as hoped.
MissRisa3 years ago
Great tut! My Mom and I have had soo many birds with wonderful feathers and haven't found a way to use them and I thought this would be perfect!
I was wondering though is there a nice way of hiding the cut end of the wire at the end of the coil? Mine seems to stick out and when I try to take my pliers and "tuck" it in there's no where to tuck it.
Thanks again for this awesome tut :)
jfeathersmith (author)  MissRisa3 years ago
You might be able to put a really sharp bend into the end of the wire, and kind of smash/crimp that into the coil so that the end is hidden. I usually just crimp the very end really tightly so the end doesn't poke out - and cut it at the right spot first so that the cut end is not on the visible side! Filing the wire end before you tuck/crimp it will also reduce the risk of hurting someone.

I suppose you could always cut a little scrap of fabric or ribbon or something and glue it over the end of the coil, too.
kiva223 years ago
beautiful! where do you get feathers that tiny??
jfeathersmith (author)  kiva223 years ago
Thanks! I have parrots, so I end up with A LOT of feathers. These little blue ones are alular feathers from my green cheeked conure (see diagram down the page here: http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=15+1829&aid=2776).
l8nite4 years ago
my eyes hurt just thinking about doing  that ! Nicely thought out and executed "ible"
jfeathersmith (author)  l8nite4 years ago
Thanks!

The close-up photos probably make it look more eye-straining than it was. I wasn't actually working 3 inches from my nose.
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