Handmade Bird Wedding Cake Topper

The Wedding Cake Topper... a strangely fun and high-pressure wedding decoration. I mean, you're kind of putting a version of you on the cake right? It's a weird feeling, but also very cool.

After some day dreaming and shopping around I found the. PERFECT. one - an adorable bird couple. Unfortunately it was way out of my price range. Ain't that always the way?

So, I made my own.

For whatever reason this wedding DIY scared me more than any other wedding projects. And how do I deal with scary things? I avoid them. Lame and true! So I put this project off until I was getting really nervous I wouldn't be able to pull it off in time. What if I started and it was a disaster?? Not only would I have wasted time, but money I didn't have to spend. See? I worked myself up a little ;)

But, as with many scary things in life, it wasn't bad at all. In fact, it only took me two days to finish these suckers. And... it was fun.

Some Make-This-Tips for the curious at heart: I couldn't find ANY bird patterns that matched my vision for this project. If you want to make your own birds, I would start with this pattern by lavender's blue and alter it to fit your wishes. Before I started my actual topper, I made a test bird to figure out the basic shape. It seems like making an extra bird would take forever, but it saved me a lot of time in the end.

Also, making the tail separate from the body gave me a lot of flexibility. For the boy bird I used felted wool that didn't need seams, so the tail is literally glued inside the body (with wire supports on the inside to make it stand up). The girl bird uses the same technique, but the raw seams are hidden by a lace aplique.

The legs are long pieces of floral wire poked through the fabric, deep into the bodies, and secured with a little glue. I spoke with my caterer about the legs before finalizing their design, and she told me that the deeper they could go into the cake the better, so I left the legs extra long!

The most fun part of it all was the details. Using leftover materials from the hairpiece and boutonni√®res I made, I was able to add details that matched our other wedding decorations at no extra cost! The eyes and beaks are made with little bits of leftover felt that I tore apart and rolled into new shapes.

Even though Tim didn't wear one, I just had to give Tim's bird a little felt hat. It didn't even have a top, but no one noticed ;)

So that's it! Facing crafting fears - check. Cake topper ready for crazy-faced Jen during the cake cutting...?

Double check!

(wedding photos by Kaitlin Jane Photography | other photos by insideways)