I had a lot of fun adding little details, ties and bow ties for the boys, pearls and flowers for the girls.
Then I put them all together on a little branch and painted a clothes pin for the bottom so it can clip on the tree.
I am going to share my pattern for a basic bird with you. These little guys are pretty simple to make. The one I made today is going to my sister for her new Christmas tree. You could get really creative with these birds, I think they would be beautiful with some hand embroidery on them!
I made the pattern and then used my printer to scale it down to the different sizes you see in the family of birds. The pattern full size makes a bird about 3" tall, that is the size I use in this tutorial. The biggest bird in the family is about 2" and the babies are about 1", they all had to be smaller because I had to fit a lot of birds on that branch!
Here's what you need
Pattern that you can download here
Felt (I used those eco-fi felt sheets you can buy real cheap at the craft stores)
Seed beads for the eyes
Needle and coordinating thread
Skill Level: Beginner
Print out your pattern in the size you want, if you want smaller birds, scale the image down some before printing. Cut out your pieces.
Cut the pieces out of felt. You will also need a small triangle of felt for the beak.
I start with a piece of thread that is about 3 feet long. the same string will sew all the way around the bird, I hate tying off my thread! Sandwich the beak between the 2 side pieces and stitch it in place starting at the bottom.
When you get to the top, grab your birds back, place the point right at the top of the beak. using a whip stitch, stitch all the way down one side.
When you reach the bottom point on the side, it should line up right where the tail flares out.
Next, grab your birds belly. Line it up with the point on the side piece and whip stitch the side and belly together.
The point on the belly should line up with the bottom of the beak.
Stitch down the other side of the belly piece to the other side piece. When you get to the bottom of the belly, line up the side piece with the back piece where the tail flares out and stitch the back and side together.
Now your bird should look like this. Tie off your thread.
There should be an opening at your birds bottom, this is where you will stuff him.
I find a pencil or marker is helpful for getting the stuffing in that little hole.
Stitch your birds bottom shut.
Stitch on some seed bead eyes.
Your bird is ready for embellishments! On my family of birds, I did not give the birds wings. They were all so squished on the branch you didn't really notice. I decided that since this guy was all by himself, he needed some wings so I cut a shape I liked and stitched them on.
Then I use a needle with a really big eye to add a ribbon to his head so my sister can hang him on her tree.
To make a branch for a family of birds, cut 2 of the same branch shapes. Whip stitch them together around the edges, leaving one edge open. Stuff it a little through the open end then stitch the hole shut. Cut out some leaves and sew them on. Then I used hot glue to keep my birds in place and to attach the clothespin to the bottom.