felt dove ornament tutorial

December 1st, 2010

felt bird ornaments

a felt dove ornament

I mentioned it last week, but I realized some of you may have missed it: everyday this week I will have instructions for a new handmade ornament.  You probably caught on by now, seeing it’s wednesday and look! another tutorial.  This is my christmas gift to you–all my readers! I’ve said it before, but I mean it: you are awesome. And you deserve a present, or five.

This little bird takes four strips of felt and five stitches to make. Really, that’s it.


  • one 2in x 8in piece of wool felt
  • needle and thread
  • a little embroidery floss (that matches your felt)
  • a disappearing ink pen
  • a rotary cutter is nice, but scissors are fine too


First cut your felt into four 8 x 1/4 inch long strips. Line them up nice and neat like I have below.

four felt strips for the dove

Make a mark on them with your disappearing pen at these measurements:

  1. on the top strip at 1 1/2inches and 3 1/2 inches from the right
  2. on the second strip at 1 1/4inches and 3 3/4 inches from the right
  3. on the third strip at 1 inch and 4 inches from the right
  4. and on the bottom strip 3/4inch and 4 1/2 inch from the right

Now stack up all the strips in the same order they are already in (bottom one on the bottom, then the third one on top, and so on). Flip the top one over when you stack it on top so the markings are hidden.

stack them on top of one another

Take your needle and thread and on the right side where they are all lined up sew the strips together with a few stitches. This will make the beak of the bird. When you start hide your knot in between two of the strips and when you are done hide it again–do this for the next steps as well.

the first stitch makes the beak

Next line up all the first dots you made and sew a few stitches to secure them together. You’ve just made the dove’s head.

second stitch makes the head

Now line up the next set of dots and sew. Look! A bird! You can trim the tail however you like. You can round the edges, or make them fringey, or roll the strips up at the end and iron them a bit so they curl, or whatever else you can think of.

third stitch makes the body

To make the hanger, take your embroidery floss (about 8 inches or so) and insert your needle where you made the neck stitch. And then again by the tail stitch. Put the ends of the thread together–you should have made a triangle where the base is the same length as the back of the bird. This sounds very weird when I say it, but in the picture it’s pretty obvious, right?


I used green embroidery floss so you could see it better, but you probably want it to match your felt. Tie the ends together and hang up that pretty christmas bird.

handmade felt dove ornament

a christmas present for my lovely readers: a week of handmade ornament tutorials!

I will be accepting advertisers  on Elsie Marley starting January 2011. If you would like to reserve a spot please email me and we can discuss the specifics! Thanks! elsiemarleyblog@gmail.com
Posted in christmas, tutorials.

25 Responses to felt dove ornament tutorial

  1. Louisa says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your tutorial! I’ll have to make a flock of felt doves. They remind me of an ornament that a man at my childhood church made from the offcuts at his factory. Ours are rather worn. I never thought of replicating because I could not reproduce the material.

  2. Ashley says:

    I just found your blog through an Oh Dee Doh post and I am totally smitten with all of your projects! I’m hoping to get myself in gear this weekend and try my hand at the pom pom garland you featured Monday.

    Could you share where you source your wool felt? I find it’s so expensive, otherwise I’d use it for more. Have you found it discounted anywhere?

  3. meg says:

    Ashley, I don’t have any secret sorces for felt, sorry. I got about a yard of white wool felt a few years ago at Joann’s and it’s lasted me this long. It is much more expensive than the acrylic kind, but it is a lot nicer to work with too.

    Louisa, those ornaments sound amazing! what where they made of?

  4. Islay says:

    How lovely! I’ve been looking out for non-breakable ornaments to make now we’ve got a mobile toddler, and these look perfect.

  5. Vanessa says:

    these are fantastic!

  6. Kirsty says:

    These are wonderful Meg!

  7. shelly says:

    I think this one is my favorite!

  8. Antoinette says:

    I don’t even really know you, but I just adore you. This is a fabulous project! Thanks for the week of ornaments!

  9. Anya says:

    These are great! Thank you so much for the tutorial!

  10. Jennifer says:

    I featured you on my blog for Craftify It Thursday!! Swing by and grab the featured button and link up a craft if you’d like!


    Jennifer @ Life with the Lebedas

  11. Sister Diane says:

    Oh, Meg – how wonderful these are! So simple and bold and beautiful. And your tutorial is really splendid. Thank you so much!

  12. These are beautiful – and will go great with the other felt ornaments on our tree. Thank you!

  13. MFTA says:

    These are great! I’m going to feature them on our blog at Materials for the Arts in NYC


  14. Anne Marie says:

    They are so simple and yet so beautiful!

  15. Laura says:

    Love this project… These are such cute (and simple to make) doves! Thanks for sharing!

  16. magali says:

    Merci beaucoup
    Ils sont ravissants

  17. Emma says:

    Wow – this is such a simple yet utterly beautiful idea. Brilliant! Thanks so much for this tutorial.

  18. barbara says:

    these are beautiful! thanks for the tutorial!

  19. Jorie says:

    Thanks for sharing this! I made a few of these to go along with some secret santa gifts this coming weekend :)

  20. Amanda says:

    thanks for the great tutorial. I made some and posted it on my blog

    happy Christmas

  21. […] followed this tutorial for a felt dove ornament from elsie marley’s blog.  I used regular old polyester felt squares from Joann’s instead of wool felt though.  […]