Geeky DIY: Fairy Wings

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I went to the Burley Fairy Festival earlier this month and decided that dressing up was a must. It was pretty easy to put a last minute fairy costume together from my cosplay box; the only thing I was missing was wings.

I decided to make my own seen as I had limited time. Here’s a step by step guide, just in case you want to have a go yourself.

You will need four wire coat hangers and tights – the two main components of the wings. You’ll also need wire cutters, scissors, and tape, along with things to decorate your wings. I used acrylic paint, glitter glue, and even more glitter.

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Start by shaping the coat hangers with the wire cutters. This was the hardest part because the wire was so strong. I straightened out the hooks first, cut them to size, then pulled the bottom of the hangers down to make an oval/diamond.

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Once you have this basic wing shape, you can start smoothing out the edges, and adding detail. I taped the top two wings together and the bottom two together, then shaped them simultaneously so that they were symmetrical.

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When you’re happy with the shape, stretch your tights over the wire, but be careful not to ladder them. I used nude tights, but would have used coloured tights if I had thought about it. I ended up making an extra wing out of garden wire for each side, to add a little depth. It was easy to mould, but very flimsy and delicate.

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You can now start decorating. If you have used coloured tights, you could just add detail to the wings, but if you’ve used nude, then you may want to consider painting them. Just remember, the thinner the tights, the harder they are to paint, and even with a few layers of acrylic, my wings were still a little see through. Glitter helped this though – lots and lots of glitter.

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When they’re dry, attach the top two wings together with the tape then do the same for the bottom two. Make sure each set are sturdy – you may need a lot more tape than you think. Join the sets together in the middle and wrap with ribbon.

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Measure some extra ribbon to make straps that will attach the wings to your back. You may also want to add something to the centre of the wings. I ended up clipping on a daisy.

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I loved how my wings turned out. They survived the whole festival, even when it got a bit windy, and everybody loved them. The best bit is that I can reuse the frame for next year’s festival, I’ll just change the tights.

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