Painting with Feathers


Last week I did a bird theme with Caden, he has noticed birds more so I thought it would be a good time to teach him a little about birds. Now I know painting with feathers doesn’t really teach him anything about birds, but it was fun nonetheless. And as you can see from the picture above he was eager to get started despite coming down with a cold.


This is a really quick and easy project to set up. All you need is:

  • White paper- the larger the better I think
  • Paint (I used washable finger paint)
  • Craft feathers can be bought at most craft stores and come in different sizes. I think painting with different sizes would be fun, but I just grabbed these large ones from my craft closet.

Once you have gathered all your supplies, tape a large piece of paper on to the table, so it doesn’t slide around.  Squirt some paint onto your tray (I use plastic lids) and let your child loose to explore the materials. This project is all about the process, there is no right or wrong way to do it. Just have fun! You might just be surprised at how it turns out!


Caden experimented a few different ways with the paint and feathers. At first he just used the feather like a brush, sweeping the paint across the paper.


Then he tried swatting the feather against the paper. This created a splatter effect.


Then he turned the feather around and dipped the feather into the paint like a quill. I thought this was really inventive of him, because to my knowledge he has never seen anyone write with a quill.


As Caden was experimenting with the pointed end of the feather, he noticed that he was scratching the paint off the paper.


And so he began to scratch lines into the paint and explore what happen when you drag the pointed end of the feather over the paint.


 THEN he noticed that he had paint on his hand! I showed him that I also had paint on my hand and that it was okay. And that is when he had a breakthrough, light bulb moment!


He hesitated and looked at me as if to ask for permission to put his hand in the paint. And being the fearless mom that I am 😉 I encouraged him to try it out!


And the feather painting lead to finger painting!

This is something Caden has always been hesitant to do.

I also had an epiphany, Caden has always been slightly irritated about getting messy and it is probably because I was always slightly irritated about HIM getting messy, even though I tried not to show it, he had obviously picked up on that vibe.


And this is how the project ended, in a beautiful blue-green mess!

Which I might add, Caden happily cleaned up splashing around in the kitchen sink! Something he has always enjoyed. Go figure, it’s a fairly clean activity! 🙂

© 2013 – 2015, Stir The Wonder. All rights reserved.

17 thoughts on “Painting with Feathers”

  1. When I saw this I thought ‘what a brilliant and simple idea! Why didn’t I think of that?’. Well done on a great post. I love how your little one experimented so easily.

    1. Samantha says:


  2. This is a cool project. I think it is cool to try fun things like this just to see how kids will react to and explore the new materials! Looks like your little guy had a blast! I love that you used plastic lids for your paint trays. We do that too!

  3. I enjoyed this post so much. I actually giggled when you described his lightbulb/finger painting moment because I could JUST so, so see it. Thank you for sharing! Thanks for linking at Magic Moments Monday!

    1. Samantha says:


  4. Kristen B says:

    My toddler would love to do this. He loves painting and it would be a fun way to change it up.

    I would love it if you would come link up at Artsy Play Wednesday – Kids’ Craft Linky.

    1. Samantha says:

      Thanks for the invite! I linked up!

  5. Dyan says:

    I love how he used the feather like a quill pen!

    1. Samantha says:

      Me too! I was pretty amazed that he thought to try the other end of the feather!

  6. Sugar Aunts says:

    We are featuring your post on Share It Saturday this week as part of a HUGE list of Rainy Day Summer Play activities. We will be sharing our list with all of our social media outlets, including group boards and communities 🙂
    Thanks for sharing with us at Share It Saturday
    Colleen at Sugar Aunts

    1. Samantha says:

      Awesome! Thank you! I’m so excited about how well this post has been received!

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