Make a feather candle holder

Lately I have been very busy making chicken crafts. I've made crafts in the shape of chickens and crafts out of feathers. Since many other chicken keepers also like to make crafts I thought I would share them with you. This week I made feather candle holders and I think they turned out really cute!

For these candle holders I used some feathers that I had held onto after my favorite chickens passed on, and other feathers that I had just picked up from the yard when the guineas dropped them. The great thing about owning chickens is that I always find tons of feathers in the yard to craft with! You can buy feathers in the craft store though or even dye your own if you have a certain color scheme or 'look' you want to go for.

Feather candle holders DIY

Each feather candle holder took me about 30 minutes to make from start to finish but a lot of that was drying time. I made 4 candle holders with feathers this time, but I think I may make more for Christmas gifts!

Related reading: How to make a chicken feather necklace.

How to make feather candle holders

You'll need:
Clean feathers
Modge podge
Glass candle holders (Dollar Tree has a nice selection)
Paintbrushes of various sizes

Choose your feathers and make sure they are free of debris and excess tiny feather pieces. 

If a contour feather or flight feather has started to separate you can try to fix it. Pinch the feather lightly between your fingers and run your fingers down and toward the tip of the feather to try to get the barbules to hook back together. It doesn't always work, but it's worth a try! 

For downy feathers, using a dry toothbrush or firm bristle paint brush, brush the feathers out away from the feather shaft. These downy pieces tend to tangle up into a ball of fluff and if you don't brush them out they'll look all matted once you glue them down.

Don't trim the feathers yet, you'll use the quill end to hold them so you don't get modge podge on your fingers and stick to everything!

Now we're ready to apply the first coat of modge podge. Turn the feather over so the back is facing you. Using a small soft brush, paint the modge podge down the spine of the feather. Apply modge podge to the top of the feather also but not to the down parts. For flight feathers, you'll paint the whole feather down to where you plan on clipping the quill off. So basically, only paint the firm parts of the feather not the fluffy stuff.

Click on pictures to enlarge.
modge podge guinea feathers to glass

Turn the feather over and position the feather on the candle holder where you'd like it to be. The part with the modge podge should be facing the glass. Press the feather gently to the glass. Use a paintbrush to arrange the feathers pieces if they've separated. Let dry.

When positioning the feather make sure it does not go above the top of the candle holder. Feathers are flammable and it would be a shame for it to catch fire!

The modge podge site says to let it dry 15 minutes between coats. Once the underside is dry, you'll apply a light coat of modge podge to the outside of the feather. Use the brush to arrange the pieces how you want them as you apply the modge podge. Allow to dry then trim the feather with sharp scissors so it does not hang past the bottom of the glass. 

Decorate candles with feathers

As you can see these guinea feathers have a lot of downy pieces on them. You can let them stay fluffy or coat them with modge podge for a smoother look. I coated the guinea feathers but left some of the feathers fluffy on the other candle holders. I actually think I prefer the fluffy look but that's up to you.
chicken feather candle craft

If you decide to coat the downy feathers, brush them out one more time with a dry paintbrush just to make sure they will lay smooth. Then brush on the modge podge starting at the center and moving out. Allow to dry.

That's it! You can apply an extra coat of modge podge if you want or even decorate with ribbon, but it's not really necessary. Now insert a candle and light 'em up!

Admittedly, there is another easier method for attaching the feathers to glass using modge podge and the feathers often look more natural. However, it can look really messy depending on which formula of modge podge you use and what finish your glass is. 

Here is the easier method: 
Decide where you want to place your feather on the glass. 
Paint the glass with modge podge where the feather will go. 
Press the feather down onto the glass. 
Allow to dry and apply a second coat. 

modge podge chicken feathers to glass easily

I wanted to add this method because it is easier, but it does not work for all surfaces. It looked horrible on the blue frosted candle holder though it was fine on the clear glass. To test, dab a small amount of glue on candle holder and allow to dry. Once dry see if it blends in or stands out to decide which method to use.

Chicken feather candle holders

Decorating candle holders with feathers is a great way to memorialize a favorite chicken or even just to bring your love for chickens indoors! 

Want more ideas for using feathers? Check out my other chicken craft tutorials.


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