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Ostrich Feather Centerpiece Tutorial

Updated on July 15, 2015

DIY Non-floral Elegant Wedding Centerpiece Tutorial

Create a fun and easy do-it-yourself wedding or party centerpiece with Ostrich Feathers and an Eiffel Tower Vase. This page will show you step by step how easy it is to create your own beautiful feather centerpiece.

Ostrich feathers come in many colors and sizes to create the perfect look tailored to your wedding or party. The long neck of the Eiffel tower vase will allow your guests to easily talk across the table, while creating a stunning arrangement that will wow.

The best part of using a non-floral centerpieces, they can be set up in advance and disassembled afterwards to sell or store for use with your next event.

Photo Credit: PixelPosy.

White Ostrich Feather
White Ostrich Feather

Selecting the Right Type of Ostrich Feather

Not all feathers are created equal, know what you are paying for

Prices, lengths and grades of feathers vary greatly. A-quality, bleached white ostrich drab feathers in lengths over 15" are very beautiful, but can be several dollars per feather. This quickly adds up when you're talking about making over a dozen centerpieces.

There are a few tricks to cut costs, such as mixing lower grades and lengths of the same color. The flaws are easily hidden in a full arrangement. Look for deals locally on craiglist.org or nationally on eBay. Many brides will resell their feathers, so it's also worth checking out bridal forums such as TheKnot.com.

Image thanks to Michael Allen Smith

Gorgeous White Ostrich Feathers - Create wedding centerpieces with WOW factor

Ostrich Feather Centerpiece Arrangment
Ostrich Feather Centerpiece Arrangment

You can't go wrong with all one color feather centerpieces, but if you've got a good eye, you can easily mix multiple colors to fit your theme and create something truly custom. I tried to mix in some black feathers into my white arrangements and they turned out too Mardi Gras for my taste. Instead I ended up creating an all black centerpiece to place on the bar.

Image thanks to Haldane Martin

You Will Need these Feather Centerpiece Materials - Shop around online and locally for the best deals

  1. Per centerpiece you will need around twenty to thirty 12-15 inch white ostrich drab feathers (use even longer feathers create a more luxurious centerpiece). The number of feathers determines the fullness of the arrangement. You can go with less or more depending on your budget and the look desired. A 50 feather centerpiece for example looks amazing, but I found 30 is still awesome, but much easier on the wedding budget.
  2. A belle-style bouquet holder with fresh floral foam. These should have a straight up and down handle. The floral foam is important as regular Styrofoam can damage the feather tips.
  3. An Eiffel tower vase. These can be any height you prefer, but keep in mind a taller vase will allow your guests to see each other around the table. They come in clear and frosted.
  4. (Optional) Sand to fill the vases for stability. I recommend using the clear Eiffel tower vases if going this route. Adding colored sand is a great way to spice up an all white centerpiece.
  5. (Optional) A few Floralites on a string to light up the vase if not using sand. The frosted Eiffel tower vases work better if using lighting.I preferred the glow of candlelight on the tables to Floralites in the vase. Though a lot of venues don't allow candles, so Floralites are a great alternative.

About 30 Ostrich Drab Feathers per Centerpiece - More or less depending on look and budget

12-15 inch feathers will create a nice look, but longer feathers will be more luxurious. The number of feathers will also change the look. 50 feathers will create an extremely full and beautiful centerpiece, but I found 30 to be a nice balance between budget friendly and looking great. Of course fewer feathers is still a gorgeous look, especially if going with long feathers.

Mix it up with Colored Feathers - Go beyond boring white

Reception with Black Ostrich Feather Centerpiece
Reception with Black Ostrich Feather Centerpiece

This all black centerpiece in the foreground added to the party. I couldn't get a mix of black and white to look right, so I ended up making a very full black arrangement for the bar.

I recommend playing it safe and sticking with all one color or shade of feather per arrangement, it's much less stressful. But if you have a natural eye go for the mix. Check out the link selection below for some color inspiration, my favorite combo is turquoise feathers with orange ribbon. You could also add ribbons and crystals for a little something special.

Photo Credit: PixelPosy.

Clear Eiffel Tower Vases - These also come in frosted

20" Glass Eiffel Tower Vases - 12 Pack - Clear
20" Glass Eiffel Tower Vases - 12 Pack - Clear

Although the shorter vases are cheaper, keep in mind that the taller vases will allow your guests to talk across the table. I found my 36 inch vases through a local rental company.

 

with Floral Foam - Essential for creating the perfect centerpiece

Oasis® Wedding Belle® Box of 6 Bouquet Holders - Large Clear Straight Handle
Oasis® Wedding Belle® Box of 6 Bouquet Holders - Large Clear Straight Handle

It is important to work only with floral foam bouquet holders that have a straight handle. If you use Styrofoam the feather tips may break and will not stay as secure in the bouquet holder. A tipped bouquet holder simply won't stay in the vase.

 

(Optional) FloraLytes - To light up the Eiffel tower vases

Pack of 10 Acolyte FloraLyte White
Pack of 10 Acolyte FloraLyte White

These work great with a frosted Eiffel tower vase. Just tie them to the handle of the belle-bouquet holder with varying lengths and let them dangle inside the vase. Note: I found the bright lights clashed with the glow from candle light. Take that in to consideration if using both.

 

(Optional) Colored Sand - Fill clear vases with sand to add color and stability

ACTIVA Scenic Sand, 5-Pound, Turquoise
ACTIVA Scenic Sand, 5-Pound, Turquoise

I preferred the glow of candles to the light from the floralytes so used clear vases filled with black sand to add a little pop of color. You could also wrap a colored ribbon around a frosted vase.

 

Decorate the Base with a Mirror & Candles - Scattered rose petals are always a nice touch too

Candle and Mirror Wedding Centerpiece
Candle and Mirror Wedding Centerpiece

The heat from the candles will cause the feathers to float a bit. Very pretty. I mixed in a lower centerpiece that had a large pillar candle. So using the tea-light candles on the tables with the tall ostrich feather centerpieces helped pull the two centerpiece looks together.

Photo Credit: PixelPosy.

Video Tutorial: Assembling the Centerpiece - Easier than you think, looks great with less feathers

This video tutorial shows you all you need to know to create your basic Ostrich Feather Centerpiece.

From here you can build upon the basic look by adding more feathers, using longer feathers or mixing in different colored feathers.

You could ditch the lights and use a clear vase with colored sand as I did. Or try adding other elements like beads, ribbon, floral stems or crystals. Let your creativity lead you.

Video courtesy of Wholesale Event Solution.

Keep the Feathers Dust Free

Prior to the event, store your feathers in tissue or plastic bags. This will prevent them from attracting dust. They make feather dusters for that very reason!

Written tutorial for DIY Feather Centerpieces - Much simpler than it looks!

  1. Keep feathers wrapped in tissue or plastic sleeves until ready to use. They can attract dust (hence feather dusters). Organize your feathers from longest to shortest. The longest feathers should fill in the bottom layer, the shortest feathers will go on top.
  2. If using sand, fill up your vase. If using FloraLytes, measure out the length of string and tie to the bouquet holder handle.
  3. Place the bouquet holder on top of the vase. The handle will keep the bouquet holder upright and secure.
  4. Start pushing feathers into the floral foam of the bouquet holder at the base or bottom of the floral foam. Push the feathers in at about a 45 degree angle so they are slightly pointing down. They will fall a little on their own. Keep going around in a ring leaving a little space between each feather.
  5. Move to the middle to create the next row, this time pushing them in a little straighter. Try to place the second layer of feathers so they are above the first row but sit in between the stems of the bottom layer. This will help fill in holes. Depending on how many feathers you work with you may put another row or two before moving to the top layer, but this isn't necessary. You can also save the extras to push in as filler wherever a little more fullness is needed.
  6. Place the top layer of feathers sticking out and up to give your centerpiece some height. I like to stick at least one going straight up at the top.
  7. Now step back and fill in any holes with additional leftover feathers or smaller filler feathers if using.
  8. (Optional) If working with fewer feathers, you may want to spray paint your floral foam to match the color of feathers you'll be working with before assembling. This will help hide any holes.

    Another money saving tip is to purchase a pack of 6 inch ostrich feathers, which are much cheaper. They make great filler, especially on top.

    At this point you could also add in other details as mentioned above. Ribbons, crystals, flowers, etc. Check out the link section for inspiration.

Daytime Event? - The feathers still stand out

Up close white ostrich feather centerpiece
Up close white ostrich feather centerpiece

This arrangement held about 35 feathers from 17"-23" a mix of A and B quality. It also had a handful of filler feathers that were about 6"-9" each.

Photo Credit: PixelPosy.

Save money by mixing centerpieces - Tall & short centerpieces look great and add interest

Wedding Reception - Ostrich Feather Centerpieces
Wedding Reception - Ostrich Feather Centerpieces

These tall centerpieces have a lot of impact. For weddings with a lot of tables fairly close together the impact can be overwhelming not to mention expensive to create. We had about 20 tables to decorate in a fairly small room. By mixing in a cheaper candle based centerpiece with the tall Eiffel tower centerpiece we saved money and still had gorgeous results. To unify the different centerpieces they both used feathers and candles.

Photo Credit: Nibbled.

Wedding Centerpiece Survey - What's on your table?

Ostrich Eye
Ostrich Eye

Image thanks to Erik Kilby

Which type of centerpiece do you prefer?

See results

Share your Wedding Centerpiece Ideas - Please leave a note, thanks!

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    • profile image

      Vantype 3 years ago

      These are really nice centerpieces, simply and great for events.

    • shellys-space profile image

      Shelly Sellers 3 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

      Love the idea of using ostrich feathers as wedding decorations and centerpieces!

    • oddobjective profile image

      oddobjective 4 years ago

      Very well written and the presentation is great. I have never seen this type of centerpiece at a Wedding before but what a great idea. Blessed.

    • LizMac60 profile image

      Liz Mackay 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Great ideas for a different centerpiece. Blessed.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Wonderful tutorial! We are asked everyday for DIY Ostrich Feather Centerpieces directions! This is a great resource that we will gladly recommend to our clients at The Feather Place!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image

      girlfriendfactory 5 years ago

      This is really well done and something I haven't seen before. I don't do much in the way of weddings so that's probably why, but I thought it was very interesting and the video was clear and easy to understand. They look like feather palm trees. :) I like that your guests can still talk around them, too.

      This terrific lens is more than worthy of a Flyby Winging and it can be found among the other blessed lenses for today at Have Wings Will Bless! They may call me an aimless wanderer, but not all who wander are aimless and I'm glad my aim was good when I wandered upon this. ~Ren

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      This is the most complete resource that I have ever seen online concerning ostrich feathers. Well done!

    • alexandradouglas profile image

      Alexandra Douglas 6 years ago from Florida

      Wow! Nicely done! I have emus incubating in my incubator, maybe I can do some centerpiece with their feathers! Thank you for your info!

    • pixelposy profile image
      Author

      pixelposy 6 years ago

      @RickBasset: Thank you kindly for the blessing RickBasset! :) Very much appreciated.

    • RickBasset profile image

      RickBasset 6 years ago

      Nicely Done! They do make gorgeous centerpieces!

      Blessed by The Wedding Decorations Angel!

    • pixelposy profile image
      Author

      pixelposy 6 years ago

      @CofCJenny LM: Thanks for visiting Jenny. I agree feathers make for beautiful wedding centerpieces!

    • profile image

      CofCJenny LM 6 years ago

      My cousin just had these at her wedding and they made beautiful centerpieces!