How to clean, dye and use your own feathers!
If you have a good amount of birds, chances are they are always shedding and molting feathers here and there. You can use feathers from any type of poultry; Chickens, Ducks, Peafowl, Turkey, and More! Why let the feathers go to waste? They make GREAT feathers for crafts and will be cruelty free! Here on some tips on what to do, how to clean and dye feathers!
-What Feathers are Good for-
- Native American Projects
- Little Kid Crafts
- Fly Fishing Lures
-How to Collect & Clean Feathers-
- When you see feathers around your coop, in the yard and around the kiddie pool, its time to collect them! When collecting feathers look for reasonably clean, non broken feathers. Put them in a bucket, bag or something if you have a lot to pick up.
- After collecting your feathers, its time to clean them! First, rinse your feathers to get most of the debris off. Then soak them for at least ten minutes in a hot, sudsy water. (I recommend using a really strong soap, such as dawn. It will help remove dirt and get rid of any grease). Swish them around and then run with the grain of the feather to make sure everything is "Sudsy". Rinse the feathers well, and squeeze the excess water out.
- You can dry the feathers by placing out on a paper towel and/or use a blow dryer to "Fluff" them.
Making your own colored feathers can be a lot easier than you think! Just by using simple ingredients, you can have lots of craft feathers! Here is what you need:
- 1 Unsweetened Kool-Aid Packet. Pick the color you want! (Yellow and Pink are harder to get good color out of and may require time tweaking.)
- White, Light Grey, Or feathers with white
- White Distilled Vinegar
- Microwave Access
- Oven Mitts, Stirring Utensils, Paper Towels.
- 2 microwave safe bowls
- Get out the bowls. Fill one with cool water and set it aside. Pour the kool-aid powder into the other empty bowl.
- Fill desired amount of feathers into the bowl. Make sure the feathers are pre-washed (otherwise the color might not set) and don't put to many in.
- Add Vinegar and water! Use 1 to 2 cups vinegar to 1 cup of water! Generously cover the feathers, not enough liquid will fry the feathers!
- Stir and make sure all feathers are submerged.
- Microwave for 2 minutes
- Stir, then microwave for another 2 minutes.
- After a total of 4 minutes, remove (carefully) and stir. Carefully remove the feathers from the dye and put them into the bowl with water in it.
- Remove from water, squeeze out excess and place onto a towel to dry!
I also made a video of the process (with photos!). Check out this link- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qsi3Qfo66lU
If you guys have any questions, feel free to comment or message me!