1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Pillows from feathers

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by comp6512, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. comp6512

    comp6512 Songster

    Dec 3, 2008
    Not sure if that's the right place to post, but I figured if you process your chickens, you have to have feathers.

    How do you wash the feathers and how do you dry them? And then, do you have to clip each and every feather to remove the sharp end?

    My childhood memories: sleeping at my grandma's house on these huge soft pillows, and once in a while a little feather would come through the fabric, and I would pull it out and look at it and then blow it away... Memories of my wonderful grandma.

    Anyway, I hate store bought synthetic pillows that go hard after a month. Possible to make my own pillows?
    1 person likes this.

  2. Ariel301

    Ariel301 Songster

    Nov 14, 2009
    Kingman Arizona
    You could do it. That's how people got pillows before we could just go out to Walmart and buy them.

    I'm not sure how to wash them well enough for that, but I wash the ones I save to make homemade cat toys with just water and dish soap, then spread them out on a table to air dry. I suppose in large amounts, you could put them inside a pillowcase, pin it shut, and run them through the dryer. Dryer sheets would help with that icky wet-feather smell too. I use the sturdier feathers from my birds to sew onto cloth cat toys I make; the cats go crazy over them. I hate to see stuff like that go to waste too. Making feather pillows would be neat.

    You'll want just the smallest feathers that don't really have hard/sharp points. Down feathers are really what you're after. Use the tougher tail and wing feathers for something else, they're no good for pillows. It would be too time consuming to have to trim the points off all those feathers!
  3. Brunty_Farms

    Brunty_Farms Songster

    Apr 29, 2007
    Yeah you can do it, but they aren't going to be like grandmas... as they used goose and duck down... they still do today. However the feathers have to age for like 2-3 years before you use them. Why? I don't know... that's what I have heard. Check into it... google is awesome as you can find anything.
  4. Bossroo

    Bossroo Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    I remember my grandmother plucking goose and duck feathers then when done she would put them in a wash tub with soap and hot water swirl them around then rinse twice then put them between 2 screens to air dry. She would then strip the long feathers from their quills and add those to the down feathers. Tedeous work but oh so rewarding when one snessels under the down filled comfortor 6 inches thick ( yea Jeff, it takes 2-4 years to qather enough feathers to make one) and head on a down pillow on a COLD winter's night (-70*). G' Night all !!!
  5. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Songster

    Aug 19, 2009
    Cut Off, LA
    I don't know anything about the 2 or 3 year wait. I never did. I can ask my grandma when I get a chance. She only aired them out. I admit that I never put the feathers directly into a pillow, but it didn't take me years to do it. I just used my whimpy pillow cases to hang/dry the fresh feathers in the shed.
    I once decided to wash a pillow and it wouldn't dry for anything. When my grandmother found out, she took it from me and removed all the feathers, rinsed them out and put them in old pillow cases to air dry. She and my grandpa went into their shed a few times a day to move the sacks around to allow better drying. She claimed they fussed about me for days. She washed the pillow casing and replaced the feathers and upon returning it, told me not to wash it again.
    I would suggest if you can't find a strong, stiff denim, that you double up on the casting. I'm not going to say that you won't find that white and blue or black striped denim your grandma used to use, but I'm not sure where I would find it. When you feel the fabric, try and find something that you couldn't possibly imagine wanting to make into an article of clothing.
    And one more thing. Those feathers from grandma's pillows came from a duck or goose, not a chicken. I guess you could make a pillow from chicken feathers, but I don't know of anyone that did. Maybe I'll make one......small scale and see what I think about it. I mean I have what it takes after all. But what I said about stiff denim would go double if its chicken feathers.
  6. alice flip

    alice flip Hatching

    Dec 14, 2014
    HI dear
    i am alice flip from iran.i have amount of feather chicken and will sale them.they are white and loose.
    my email is [email protected]

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by