Sunday, January 15, 2012

First item for January finished

Yesterday, in between studying, I managed to get my first item for January completed. It is a feather fan with turkey and ostrich feathers and a dyed feather pad. Feather fans were a sign of status, as well as being a beautiful and practical accessory, in many renaissance courts. I made mine to go with my Elizabethan loose coats.

There are many excellent portraits of Elizabeth I showing beautiful fans. Here are examples from a great site that I use often -

Her fan is definitely pinkish!

My fan base had lots of coats of different coloured paints, including metallic gold, and six layers of satin varnish. Then the fun part began! I used a hot glue gun to glue a base layer of turkey feathers to both sides, overlapping them to hide the wooden base. Then I glued on the ostrich feathers. I had one less feather than I thought, so the back side is less well covered.

At this point, I got a bit over excited and forgot the lovely dyed peacock feathers that I had planned to add, and glued on the feather pads. Oops! Actually, I think it turned out better for the omission. I have fairly simple taste- I quite liked the look of the fan just with the turkey feathers.

The 'jewel' at the base is a purchased hair clip that I adjusted. I also painted the diamantes to make them look more like cabochons. Here is the finished product.

I have a peacock feather fan in production too, but I am still working on the jewel elements for the fan handle.

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