Introduction: Making Wire Birds

About: Artist working in felt

I made these robins as christmas tree decorations, though they are happy enough perched anywhere. I also sell them, drop me a line if you want some the easy way!

If you enjoyed this tutorial and you would like me to make more, chuck me a ko-fi here thanks!

You will need:
Needle nosed pliers -the kind that cut AND bend.

Wire! I use 0.8mm aluminium craft wire. I buy it from eBay, but if you are lucky a local art shop might stock it, although they often charge twice as much.
The black is enameled. The copper coloured isn't copper, it's just copper coloured aluminium.
I have become a little obsessed about wire. Different metals and thicknesses affect the result of a project considerably. I find even changing the thickness by 0.1 of a mil makes a difference to your outcome.

Pictures of robins. If you go to Google, select images and search for robins you should find more than enough

Step 1: Robin Body

Get a long piece of wire. I start by bending the beak and then go on to make the shape of the body and tail. Then the wire meets up at the beak again. I twist the second beak piece around the first until I reach the end of the beak, and then twist the wire back over the beak until I reach the birds face again.
Leave any excess wire attached for the next step.

Step 2: Robin Head

Take the length of spare wire attached to the beak and bring it around to attach to the back of the neck. It needs to arch around because it will make up the side of the robins head. Wrap it tightly around the wire at the back of the neck to hold it in place. Then arch it back around and secure it to the beak the same way.
Chop off any excess wire.

Step 3: Eyes

Get a 30 cm ish piece of black wire. Attach the center of this wire to the top of the robins head by wrapping it round once. Then bring each half down to meet the wire representing the side of the robins head and twist it around it. This twist is important as it represents the birds eye, so be careful where on the robins head you place it.

Step 4: Body Sides

Bring down the two pieces of wire from the eyes. These attach at the base of the Robin and form the sides of the body.

Step 5: Feet

The rest of the spare wire left will become the feet. Bend the two wires horizontally away from each other towards where you think the legs would be. At that point bend them down to be legs. Bend the wire at the bottom of the legs to become the front toes. These bend at the end. Use the pliers to bend the wire back on it's self sharply. Then wrap the wire back around the toe. All the way back to the bottom leg. Repeat for the three shorter toes. Then wrap the wire up the leg and attach the spare end to the body side.

Step 6: Wings

Make a length of wire into a wing shape joined at the bottom. Leave a good amount of wire free so you have two lengths of wire left at the bottom of the wing. Bend one of these pieces up across the wing and wrap it around the opposite side. Once you get to the top of the wing, attach it to the wire there.
The other wire needs to attach to the back of the bird above the tail.
Repeat on other side

Step 7: Breast

Wrap a piece of wire around one leg and then across the chest to the middle line. Attach it there, then bring it back down to the other leg and wrap it around to finish.

Step 8: Tail

Wrap another short piece of wire around the tail

Step 9: Colour

Get a long piece of copper coloured wire.
Attach it at the center to the Robin s forehead just above it's beak.
Run the wire above and round the robins eye and wing, fastening it by wrapping it around the black wire where suitable.
Then do the same on the other side. Cover the rest of the breast with copper wire and there you go. Experiment and please let me know how you get on!

Step 10: Outside Birds?

Someone asked in the comments if I had made any robins with thicker wire for outside. I hadn't, so I tried it. Its not easy to retain the detail and there's no colour because garden wire doesn't come in pretty colours (at least not that I have seen ) but here you go. They're still quite nice: )