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Cleaning Feathers

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  • Cleaning Feathers

    I have searched the archives for an old post on cleaning feathers. I couldn't find it which means one of 2 things. :Idea It's not in the archives or I couldn't find it. :37:

    What is the best was to clean dirty feathers? I remember reading in the old post something about washing in warm water, waiting until almost dry, and then finish with a blow dryer to fluf them up.
    One thing at a time...

  • #2
    It depends on what kind of feathers you are talking about. Each type of bird has a different level of oils that come from their body when they preen (i.e. macaws are a dry feather and don't withstand a lot of water as a more oily feather - eagle, etc. does). It also depends on whether you're talking about the large feathers or fluffs.

    To clean fluffs, I usually use luke warm water and a bit of baby shampoo. I use a blow dryer on these to ... fluff them up. With the tail or wing feathers of raptors, you can use the water and soap but then "milk" the feather from the quill to the outer edge. This will help to "reconnect" any of the barbs that have separated. Don't use a blow dryer on these feathers, just lay them flat on a piece of paper towel and let them air dry.

    With macaw feathers, be very careful about the amount of soap that you use, and then carefully "milk" them to retain their shape. Some folks put a tiny bit of baby oil on their fingers after the feathers have dried and work the feather from the quill to the outer edge again.

    There are a few excellent feather workers on this site who can probably add their 2 cents.


    • #3
      I like to wash my feathers with woolite and then soak them in a water and hair conditioner emulsion. That will put back a lot of the oils and help protect the feather. I pat them some what dry and then blow dry them lightly. After they are dry I steam them back to their natural shape. Once they are back to the shape I like I will preen them if need.
      Tha-ke'-tha-pi Wa-kon-ta


      • #4
        Tsi-tse Wa-tsi...
        Is that why you're so cute?


        • #5
          Missed you this weekend. You couldn't come because your some famous writer now. Well, remember the little people.:16: As for me being cute...that's just your bad eye sight.
          Tha-ke'-tha-pi Wa-kon-ta


          • #6
            dry cleaning solution and a good spray on hair conditioner. this works good and must spray conditioner have dimethicone which will help keep moister out of the feather. after cleaning spray the feather let the conditioner dry then iron to shape. dry cleaning does not work with painted feather this will take the paint right off and sometimes dyed ones lose some color. and with naturals doing it to much will turn them transparent. if your feather are to old its no a good idea either its just about running a test and seeing you like the result then you can go on to do more feather . this method is best when the are really dirty with thick dust or somthing like when someone spills there coke on your bustle.


            • #7

              Thanks for your advice. I'll have to raid my wife's hair products and see if she has any of thoes conditioners. :Quiet

              One thing at a time...


              • #8
                ok, here goes a sure fire way to clean up all your eagle feathers. first, gather up all the feathers that you can find. even if they aren't dirty, they should all be cleaned at the same time. then, find a box that will fit all the feathers in them. you might want to pack them real nice so they won't get damaged. tape the box up real tight. get a black marker. write my address down on the box and send them all to me. i swear, i will get them clean just as soon as i can and get them back to you. :Angel: ok. there you go.


                • #9
                  Thanks for the compliment Nativelohaus
                  One thing at a time...


                  • #10

                    Hey, I'll save ya' the postage. you can give them to me this weekend at White Star!!!!!!!!!!!!:D

                    Don't forget~~~~~~~~I'm putting the book out now!!!!!!!!!!:p
                    "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume


                    • #11
                      I'll put those copenhagen lids by the front door so I dont forget them this time. :Chatter

                      Thanks for the reminder
                      One thing at a time...


                      • #12
                        hehe.....I was talkin' bout those eagle feathers babe!!:Naughty :Quiet :Frog :Thumbs :Tongue :Crazy
                        "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume


                        • #13
                          Sorry to dissapoint you.:Tongue

                          I'm glad that you think so highly of me though :supperhap

                          You still want those copenhagen lids?
                          One thing at a time...


                          • #14
                            Sure do, just thought I'd give it a try about the feathers. Can't blame a gal for that can ya'?;)
                            "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume


                            • #15
                              Whatever you do...DO NOT use OXYCLEAN to clean feathers...I repeat..DO NOT use OXYCLEAN to clean feathers...a friend found out what it does and it is not a pretty site!!!!
                              Don't worry that it's not good enough for anyone else to hear... just sing, sing a song.sigpic


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