Friday, September 30, 2011

Birds of a Feather Costume Tutorial, Part Two

Now that you have decided on your bird alter ego, chosen your colors, and selected your fabric, it is time to get started on wing construction!

The main components of the bird wings are the feathers and the wing base, so let's start with the base. You will be creating two separate wing bases, one for each arm, both in the basic shape of a right triangle as shown in the photo:

In order to cut out your two wing base triangles, you will have to take some measurements:

Hold your arm out like you are flying and have a friend measure from the middle of your shoulder blades out to your wrist. This will be the top edge of the triangle (A).

Have your friend measure from the same spot between your shoulder blades down the middle of your back to the desired length for your wings. This will be the side edge of the triangle (B).

For the hypotenuse of the triangle, (C), I used a curved edge connecting the ends of (A) and (B), however you can make this line straight if you wish.

Now mark your triangle measurements onto your fabric and cut out your two base wing triangles. As a flamingo my main color was light pink, so I used pink fabric for my base wing triangles.

Once the wing base triangles are cut out you can fold in the edges twice narrowly to finish them if you would like. For my wings I cut edge (B) along the selvage of my fabric, narrowly hemmed edge (A), and left edge (C) raw.

Well there you have it! Two beautiful wing base triangles! In part three I will explain how to make the template for cutting out your many, many feathers!


  1. I am loving this! so excited for the rest! <3

  2. Hey super tutorial could you tell me for the base of the wings if you used the same type of fabric as the feathers or something else entirely? thanks AMIE

    1. Wondering the answer to this, bought the same fabric for base as for feathers and wondering if base fabric should have been more substantial (bought lightweight cotton/poly). Thanks.

  3. Hey you came up with this...THANK YOU! I'm making some for my daughter this weekend for her birthday. Similar to these ones:

    Love them. Thank you for the inspiration and tutorial.