DIY Dove Christmas Ornaments

December 01, 2011

I'm going to let you in on a little secret - I'm having a little trouble getting into the holiday spirit this year. I'm not sure what it is, but I just can't seem to get really excited about the holiday that is fast approaching. I own a little fake Christmas tree and a selection of ornaments and I fully intended to leave them in my storage locker for the holiday season until last week.

I was flipping through the November issue of Style At Home Magazine when I spotted this:
Style at Home - November 2011 - pg 108
Style at Home - November 2011 - pg 108
I loved one little aspect of the shot, and my plan to not decorate this year went flying out the window. Can you guess what part of the picture above inspired me? Since it's a little hard to tell from my scan here it is again:
Style at Home - Nov 2011 - White Dove
Style at Home - Nov 2011 - White Dove
Can you see it? It's the white felt dove Christmas ornament on the top right.

Once I spotted it, I knew I could make something similar, and all thoughts of being a complete Scrooge this Christmas went out the window. While they were a little time-consuming, they are very easy to make.

Here's what I used:
  • White felt
  • Pearl beads
  • Silver tulle
  • White craft feathers
  • Silver string
Craft supplies to make felt doves
What you'll need to make the doves

My first step was to find a pattern for a dove. that was easy enough using Google, and with it on my screen I free-handed the shape I wanted. There are three parts to the dove - the body, the wings, and the bottom.
My Dove Template
My Dove Template
I cut out my pattern, and then pinned it to my fabric. I cut out two body shapes, two wing shapes and one bottom shape in the felt, and two wings in the tulle.

Once the pieces were cut out I sewed the body together using a blanket stitch and then I stuffed the dove a little with some off cuts from the felt I was using to make my dove more three-dimensional.
Felt Dove sewn together

Once the bodies were put together I added the wings. I decided to add the piece of tulle over my felt wing to dress it up a little, but you could do it without. The wings are attached to the body with a couple of stitches at the top - this allows them to stand out from the body which I think looks more natural.
dove with wings added
I sewed on two pearl beads to make eyes, but I'm sure you could just use a little dab of glue.
Dove ornament with eyes added
Next, I took the craft feathers and decided on what length I wanted the tail to be. Once that was done I cut them, and then removed a little of the down from the quill to allow me to insert it easily into the dove. I used a little dab of glue to hold the feather in place.
making the feather tail for a dove ornament
My last step was to add the silver string. It turned out my string was too fat for my regular needle, but luckily I happened to have an upholstery needle with a big enough eye. All I did was use the needle to pull the string thought the top of the dove's body, and then tie a knot in the sting.

Here is the finished product:
My finished dove ornament
My finished dove ornament
Here is what this project cost (everything came from dollar stores):
  • White felt: $0 (I had it on hand from my bookend project)
  • Silver tulle: $1
  • Silver sting: $1
  • Craft Feathers: $1
  • Pearl beads: $1
  • Total Cost: $4 for 6 dove ornaments
I was going to just hang the doves, but I thought there should be something else on my tree, so I came up with what was the easiest project ever - it took about 5 minutes to make 15 ornaments.

What you'll need:
  • Small mirrors (I used round ones, but they also had squares and ovals)
  • some ribbon or string
  • some glue - I used a glue gun
    Small round mirrors
All I did was add a little dab of glue on the back of one mirror, stick in both ends of the small piece of string and lastly stick on the second piece of mirror.

Here is what they look like:
round mirror ornaments
Mirror Ornaments
  • 2 packages of 15 mirrors: $2
  • Small spool of silver ribbon: $1
  • Total cost: $3 for 15 ornaments
I was going to put all my new ornaments on my regular tree, but on the way home from work today I found a tree branch, so decided to try to replicate my inspiration image a little more.
My twig Christmas tree
And here's a close up of my dove:
White Dove Christmas Ornament

I feel I have to apologize for the pictures in this post - I'm battling two difficulties - It's now dark here when I leave for work, and when I get home, so there's no opportunity to take pictures in natural light, and probably more importantly I have no photographic ability. Maybe Santa will be good to me and get me lessons;)

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  1. Those are very nice doves that you made! I like that they have real feathers, that they are white. And it is very nice to hang them on a tree branch!
    As for the Xmas mood - I had this problem last year and complained to my friend. She sent me Xmas cd from Bocelli. Listening to it got me in festive mood pretty fast. So this year I put it up when cooking the cake for the first Advent and it was such a great atmosphere for Xmas mood! Maybe you want to give a try to pleasant Xmas music as well :-)

  2. I'm feeling somewhat the same way about Christmas this year. Maybe it's all the recent rain? Anyway, I love your DIY ornaments (thinking of making some with my boys) and the idea to use little mirrors for some sparkle. Very creative!
    I will second Andrea Bocelli's Christmas CD and am going to heed that advice and put it on today. The music is really beautiful.

  3. Your doves are so lovely! I'm sure these cuties would bring you the Christmas mood soon :) For me, the smell of roasted chestnuts on the street always gets me into the mood x

  4. It turned out beautiful! It looks great! I'm your newest follower from the Sunday Social. i'd love you to stop by my blog & maybe follow along too.

  5. How absolutely adorable! My tree is blue, sliver and white...these would look amazing on it. Thanks for the idea about the little mirrors, I have bags of them left over from a past project. I think I might make some for my large tree, what a great way to reflect more light...magical!

  6. So glad you found inspiration. I love your doves.

  7. Very pretty, I love birds and these are just lovely!!!!!!! Thank you for sharing them.

  8. Those dove ornaments are so lovely! I saw something similar made with stiffened doilies/lace today, unfortunately there were only two left (so Mum and I bagged them!) Thanks to your post I feel inspired to make some felt doves too, to go with what we already have. Thanks for the tute! :)

  9. Don't forget to link up to win the Eureka Vacuum and Kindle Fire at "The Sits Girls!!" I am grateful to be a fellow crafter in Creating Christmas, just thought you might like a chance to win big for being oh so fabulous. :)

  10. I love the twig tree and your dove ornament is so pretty! Nicely done :)

  11. I think your twig tree is beautiful. I wish was handy to make the birds but, alas, I'm not. They are a perfect touch. I have to admit, when I first saw the idea at various websites this year I didn't think it would work for me, but I borrowed the idea anyway and amazingly, it worked to create a centerpiece for my mantle (first year actually decorated) and dinette table in the kitchen/dinette. I have barberry (the picky shrubs) growing out front of my house and clipped some of it with wine colored berries still clinging to some of the branches. Perfect! I didn't need any ornaments - the contrast of the dark branches with the berries against my light colored walls was enough contrast and decoration, but I added a few, anyway. I am getting so much inspiration from your blogs and others, thanks so much!

  12. Jan, your branch displays sound really pretty.

  13. LOVELY!!! But where do you find those small mirrors and for $1 a bag?!?! Thanks & Merry Christmas >

  14. Could you tell me where to possibly get the mirrors from?
    Thanks - Jenna

  15. Hi Dena,

    I got the small mirrors from a dollarstore here in Toronto last year. I would imagine Michael's would have something similar.



  16. Hi Jenna,

    I got the mirrors from a Dollarstore in Toronto, but maybe a craft store (Micheal's?) or online might be a good source if your local dollarstore doesn't have them.


  17. I got these mirrors once as a gift. The mirrors were glued to fishing line. Then you don't see any cord.

  18. Hi Linda - that's a great idea. Thanks for sharing!



  20. Hello! Just wanted to let you know that I linked to this post as inspiration for my mirror glass ornaments today. Thanks for sharing your creativity! Love your stuff :D


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