|Step 1. Gather the feathers in a cluster, with all of the feather stems together at the bottom. Holding the stems in between your thumb and forefinger, arrange the feathers so that they are spread out at the top, like a bouquet.
Step 2. Once you have the feathers arranged, use a needle and thread to wrap around the stems and hold them together. You may need to pierce larger feather stems with the needle and thread to secure them. Start at the bottom and work your way up, winding the thread and re-arranging the feathers as needed to achieve the desired look. Tie off the thread and clip off the excess.
Tip: Work with a double-ply thread for extra strength – if you use single-ply, you’ll need to wrap and tie off twice as much to achieve the same thing. It’s even better to use silk thread, as long as you can find a color to match your feathers so all of the stitching is invisible.
Step 3. Hold the comb so that the straight edge is on the left side and the teeth are on the right. Place the feather cluster at the straight edge of the comb, with the tied-off stems at the base and the feathers running along the edge, covering the comb.
Step 4. Using a needle and thread, attach the feathers to the comb by wrapping the thread around the stems and comb. Work your way up the entire length of the tied-off stems, wrapping the thread in between the teeth of the comb as you go. Wrap up and down this section as many times as needed, until the feathers are securely attached. Knot off the end, but DO NOT CLIP THE THREAD.
Tip: If you’re concerned about the knots holding, use a dab of fabric glue or clear nail polish over each knot to really secure them. Be sure to allow each knot to dry before moving on to the next step.
Step 5. Place the rhinestone button at the base of the feathers, covering as much of the wrapped thread as possible. With the needle and remaining length of thread that are still attached to the comb, sew the button to the feather base, being sure to stick the shank of the button deep among the feathers to get the button flush with the stems. Sew as many times as needed to keep the button from straight and securely attached. Knot off the end and clip the thread.
Step 6. If there are still some feather stems showing from underneath the button, you can use threaded seed beads to cover them. With a needle and new length of thread, secure one end of thread through the stitching on the back of the comb. Thread seed beads onto the thread and wrap this beaded thread around the remaining stems, covering them. Do this as many times as needed to cover all of the stems. When they are all covered, knot off the thread at the back of the comb before clipping off the excess.
Tip: You can wrap beaded thread around the front and the back of the comb, but it’s better to have the beads only in the front. Since the comb will be flatter in the back without them, it will hold in your hair better and possibly be more comfortable to wear.