A friend asked me to make her a feather for her Elevation outfit and this is the end result;
Decorated feathers seems to be used around the 16th century throughout Europe and even some woodcuts shows decorated feathers on Landsknechts.
Pick similar coloured feathers, I’ll recommend to start with just two, it is kind of tricky to wrap them as it is.
During the last two years of selling ostriches feathers at events, I have had the opportunity to select and save the whitest non dyed feathers in the stock, initially to be used for a Saxon hat, so I had a couple to choose from for this project instead.
1) Use a sharp knife and curl each vane, kind of like you curl gift ribbon. Be careful so you don’t rip them off (it’s not the end of the world if you damage a couple, the curls will cover you)
2) When you’re done with the curls, you want to attach them; sometimes the end of the stem is a bit thick and needs to be shaved off a bit. Use a sharp knif and be careful to not slip. Removing part of the end stem will make your feathers lay more flat to each other, and will give you a thinner end, which will fit into the aiglet easier in the end.
3) Attach the feathers. A natural linen thread blends nicely with the colour of the stem. Wrap it carefully around both feathers. If a vane get caught, use a needle to carefully pull it out. Don’t stress this part, take your time to wrap it even around the stem.
4) If you want to add beads, the just add them along the way while you wrap the thread. It’s a pain in the butt to wrap and bead at the same time, so may skip this part for your first time binding feathers together.
To the left, the beads specially bought for the project was not right, they was too heavy and slightly curved and wouldn’t lay flat to the stem. To the right, the filigree bead in its different stages of being cut up.
5) I wanted to add all the bling! to the feathers, and used two filigree aiglets on each end.
Few techniques to add Turban ornaments
Mistress Juliana of Caid
Master Roland of Atenveldt
British Museum, England
Museo Nacional del Prado, Spain