DIY Leather Feather Hair Clip


This DIY was inspired by the metal feather barrette I found on The Fancy this week. It was also inspired by the price tag – $150. Ouch!

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The DIY version is made out of gold leather, one of my favorite materials lately. Here’s how to make your own:

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Start with a scrap of leather at least 6” by 2” and a pair of scissors.

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I sketched a rough feather shape on the back of the leather and then cut it out.

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After I had the general shape cut out I drew in some random feather details.

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And then cut the details with small snips all around the feather shape. In some places I cut tiny wedges of the leather out and in others I just snipped in toward the center and varying depths.

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Once the feather shape is cut out you might notice a problem – the leather has no body and just wilts over like a sad week-old flower. Here’s the trick to solving that problem…

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Wax! I used beeswax because I once bought 5 lbs of it, made some lip gloss and still have 4.95 lbs leftover. You could also try paraffin (candle) was as well. Melt the wax in a double-boiler or using a hot plate or heat gun (careful with this one). I used an embossing tool since I only needed a small amount to coat the back of the leather. (Use caution when melting wax – you don’t want to put it directly on your stove or use a microwave because it’s a fire risk.)

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Use a brush to spread the wax on the back of the leather. You’ll notice it get dark as it sinks in. In the white areas, reheat the wax with a hairdryer or heat gun and brush or wipe away any excess wax with a rag. (And look- I found another use for that ceramic tile!)

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Here’s how it looks when you’re finished. As the feather cools you can gently shape it into a slight curve and fan out the different sections to give it some depth.

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And this is how it looks from the front. To attach the hairclip I used E-6000 and pressed a barrette directly to the center of the feather.

DIY Gold Leather Feather Hairclip

Here’s the finished product. (PS – It’s hard to take a picture of the back of your own head!)

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Alicia DiRago is the founder and CEO of Whimseybox. She has led DIY events across the country and been featured in the Wall Street Journal. Alicia is a lifelong crafter and former chemical engineer obsessed with making everything from bracelets to (homebrewed) beer! You can find her personal DIY, fashion and design blog at


  • […] Plus, there’s a fun trick using wax that you should check out. Here’s the full DIY. […]

  • Reply July 21, 2013

    Barbara Hill

    With all that wax you might want to try encaustic.

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