No-Sew Turkey Costume for Dogs

In the slide show above, you're viewing a delightful no-sew turkey costume for pets! This quick and easy dog's turkey costume is a project suitable for beginners. What a fun way to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday!

How do you make a turkey costume for dogs?

Picture: Turkey costume for dogs, a simple no-sew project

It's difficult to find instructions or patterns for turkey costumes. If you've been looking around, you already may be quite frustrated!

Last year, I couldn't help the readers who wrote in asking for turkey costume patterns. So, I posed the question to some very creative home costume-makers, Bonnie and Beth Abelew of New York...and they went to work on the idea. It was a challenge! Some of the readers looking for turkey costume patterns couldn't sew---and therefore, the entire costume had to be made via no-sew methods.

On the rest of this page, you'll see the results of their brainstorming. I think you'll agree that their no-sew turkey costume for dogs is a relatively simple project which may be put together in one afternoon (once all of the materials are assembled.)

Why not try it out to add some extra sparkle to your Thanksgiving Day celebration?

How to make a Homemade Turkey Costume for Dogs

by Bonnie and Beth Abelew

Picture: Finished hat to the Turkey Costume for Dogs

Thanksgiving just isn't fun unless you make a turkey out of yourself, your dog, or someone you love. This turkey outfit involves no sewing and can be adapted for dogs or humans. Here is how to make it:

Materials needed for homemade turkey costume:

Round brown hat
Brown or earth tone feathers
Brown or tan shirt
Several large (18 x 12) sheets of stiff felt in a few Thanksgiving colors (yellow, orange, green, red, brown)
Thick elastic
Regular felt in a variety of Thanksgiving colors
Fabric glue
One sheet of red felt
Thin elastic
Brown or tan pants (for humans)
Hard cardboard (can be cut from a carton)
Yellow felt for bird beak (optional)

How to make the turkey hat with waddle

The hat of this costume uses real feathers to convey a more realistic "look." It's easy and fun to do!

First, glue the brown or earthtone colored feathers so that the brown hat is completely covered, layering them slightly to cover more of the hat. Finish with a few feathers sticking up at the top of the hat.

Next, add an elastic band to be worn on the chin by threading the elastic through the needle, pushing it through the hat, and tying on one side and then the other. This strap will hold the turkey's waddle.

You'll make the turkey waddle from a piece of red felt. Just cut out a long thin curvy shape. At the bottom of the elastic where it would sit on the chin, fold the waddle over the elastic about half an inch at the top and staple it to itself to hold it in place. Voila--you're done with the hat!

How to make the turkey costume's "body"

You may adapt this costume for human adults and kids, too!

Picture: Homemade Thanksgiving turkey suit's shirt completed

The body of your turkey costume will be simple: felt "feathers" glued over any plain, brown shirt that will fit your doggie.

You may adapt this costume for humans. Men, women, boys and girls like to be turkeys, too! Simply cover a plain pair of brown, beige or tan pants with the felt feathers (in addition to the shirt.)

First, cut feather shapes about 10 inches long from various Thanksgiving colored pieces of regular felt. Cut slits into the sides at a slight angle on each piece for a feathered look. Make as many as needed to cover the entire shirt. Make feathers for the pants as well if the costume is for a human.

Glue the feathers over the shirt and/or pants in rows that overlap. Glue only approximately the top first two inches of each feather, which will allow the rest to swing freely and be more realistically feather-like. Cover the clothing entirely, including small feathers which can made in the same way for the sleeves.

How to make the turkey costume's tail

Picture: cute dogs wearing Pilgrim and Turkey outfits for the Thanksgiving holiday

This costume's tail feathers are made from the stiff felt.

First, glue together two sheets of the same color felt squares so that you have one long piece. Cut feather shapes from this using the entire length, longways. You should be able to get about 4 feathers from the two sheets pasted together. Do not cut slits into these feathers, as it makes them too weak. Make approximately 16-20 feathers of various colors in this way.

Next, fan half the feathers out into a tail formation and put a little glue onto each feather where they touch. Put aside the other half. To add strength to the tail, glue a couple of strips of hard cardboard onto the back on the tail, going horizontally. Cover the cardboard up by gluing a matching layer of feathers onto the back over the cardboard with the other half of the feathers, so that the tail looks nice on either side.

To fit the tailfeathers onto the costume, cut a strip of thick elastic to fit around the waist of the person or dog who will be wearing the costume. Glue the middle of the strip of elastic across the bottom of the tail, so that part of it hangs on either end and can be tied on. The size of the tail feathers can be adjusted if needed. These feathers are very large and will work well for a human, but may be overwhelming depending on the size of the dog. Make smaller feathers if appropriate, and complete the tail in the same way. For dogs, you may also wish to attach a piece of thread or dental floss to the center of the tail by threading it through a needle and tying it on. This piece can then be tied to the dog's collar when wearing, to aid with balance.

Finish your turkey costume with a beak

A yellow piece of felt can be cut into a beak shape for a dog to wear over the snout for short periods, if desired. For a human costume, you may wish to purchase a rubber bird beak to wear.

Your homemade no-sew turkey costume is now complete! All you have left to do is put it on & show it off.

Don't forget to gobble!!

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