Angel Wings | Design & Shoot

I am used to making newborn baby outfits and miniature beds and other newborn related props for my own business but never made wings before. So this is going to be a challenge and i love trying new things i haven’t done before.

Not one for taking my time with anything i was just planning on going straight into making the full size wings. Thankfully Karen Heald suggested making a a smaller model first…. which makes much more sense, no doubt there will be lots of mistakes to make along the way.

Here is my mood board for this project:

Angel wings mood board sml

The wings i plan to make are folded not outstretched as in flight, because when Sophie is wearing them she will be sitting or still in the images so the wings need to be relaxed. I researched bird anatomy to look at the structure of a birds wing and how the different feathers lie and fold.


There is several layers of feathers of different sizes that overlap each other. The image below shows a couple of options, i can either have the wings separate to her arms or her arms can be a part of the actual wing:


Having her arms separate from the wings is the way i will make them, she doesn’t need to be a half bird human, fictional angels and fairies all tend to have separate arms:


To begin i looked for a set of wings that i could print and use as my template, the ones below from Deviantart were exactly the shape i needed so printed them onto 2 pieces of A4 paper. I used one set to cut smaller which was going to be the wing base for sticking the feathers onto and the other set was for feather placement reference:


Once i was happy with the template i cut it out of thin card, i didn’t want to use anything too thick because it was important that i could bend and shape it. The next step was to sort out the feathers into size order, the ones i had were all around 7 cms with a few longer ones which were going to be for the Primaries.



Using the reference images on my mood board and my helper Rolo (who leans against me during all tasks …. it must be to make sure we both don’t fall over?!)

I carefully set to sticking on the feathers (and making a royal mess with hot glue everywhere) and soon realised that the 100 feathers that i bought for this were quickly running out. I wasn’t going to be able to finish both wings at this rate so i decided to sacrifice a wing and concentrate on making one complete one…as this was only a gauge anyway.


This was the final wing, covered on both sides because this will be required on the large set.


This is why it is good to do a practise run because it makes you realise what might go wrong … in this case, i had totally under estimated the amount of feathers this was going to use.

The large feathers that i purchased for the large wings cost £11.50 for 100, you can see these in the image below:


These will barely cover 1/10th of the wings (front & back) so i’m estimating i would need to spend another £100 to get enough which isn’t feasible.

So unless i can find a big bird to donate its feathers to me i am going to have to think of another idea!!

There’s always cardboard or paper plates  😐


Angel Wings Project will carry on into Negotiated Studies 2