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Author Topic: feathers for craft  (Read 3231 times)


  • Guest
feathers for craft
« on: October 07, 2011, 10:45:27 am »
iv got some beautiful feathers that id like to use for childrens craft projects. does anyone know if i need to sterilise them to remove any germs (im thinking salmonella etc) as they are handplucked and the ends are still moist (the end that was in the bird that is)
and also id like to use fleeces in art projects, i read that u cud put the fleece in a pillow case and wash it in the washing machine to remove the grease? this would be before carding etc?
thanks again


  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2011, 11:53:18 am »
I would think you could sterilise the feathers in steam although I haven't done it.

Fleece is unlikely to survive being washed in a washing machine, even inside a pillowcase, without felting into a big ball.  You might get away with some breeds but most not.  You won't be using much fleece in art projects so washing by hand is quite quick.  Just take a small amount and sink it into a bucket of hot water with a dash of Ecover washing up liquid, Lakeland 'woolwash' or similar.  Leave it to soak for 15 mins, then scoop it out carefully, without squeezing or swishing too much, and sink it into another bucket of clean warm water to rinse. Finally lift out carefully, squeeze without twisting, wrap in a towel to dry, or you can spindry it at this stage.  Finally lay out to dry flat. If your art project involves keeping the staples intact, then hold a few in your hands, don't let go of either end and just swish them gently in the hot soapy water then in the rinsing water, then lay them out to dry, all without disturbing the organisation of the fibres. For felting, you will be carding anyway so jumbling it all up a bit doesn't matter.  Your main concern is not to let it felt before you have started work on it - with felting you use a lot of soap, high temp and shocking of the fibres with heat changes, rubbing and impact, so when washing, try to avoid all those things.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2011, 11:55:28 am by Fleecewife »
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  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Cairngorms
  • take it easy and chill
    • blaemuir cottage
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2011, 01:57:34 pm »
My Hubby puts them in a sealed clear bag and puts them in the freezer for a week, that is ment to see off any bugs and stuff, he uses them for fishing  :wave:


  • Guest
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2011, 08:01:09 pm »
thanx, i spose u could steam the feathers in a plastic bag then put out flat to dry. i will try that over the holidays.
now where do u buy the metal "carding?" brushes, iv seen it done but it was a while ago...

Mel Rice

  • Joined Sep 2011
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2011, 11:02:19 pm »
When doing archery you have to steam the feathers to reshape them after use esp. if you used them in the rain!!!. We did re-enactment archery for a long time and steamed the arrows by the basket load! (hold the feather over a pan of simmering water then gently stroke the feather in the direction it should be to re-align and relink the individual strands of the feather)


  • Joined Aug 2009
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2011, 09:12:49 am »
An old biscuit tin, punched with holes, put feathers in and put in a hot oven for a few minutes. I have some beautiful cockerels with gorgeous feathers going in the deep-freeze. If you would like some more feathers I can post them. :)


  • Guest
Re: feathers for craft
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2011, 07:42:54 pm »
thanks sylvia, but we are just doing our cockerals at the moment plenty of feathers here!


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