Needle Felting a Turkey – Fun & Easy Tutorial

Needle Felted Turkey Tutorial Free

This free tutorial for needle felting a turkey is both easy & fun! The Living Felt crew collaborated,
passing the little felted balls and turkeys between us for their development.

We used Living Felt brand wools: CW-1 Core Wool, and MC-1 Merino Cross Batts.
A great color pack would be the fall fun pack, bodies are clay, heads are mango, and tail feathers
in order are:

Bonsai, Mango, Ruby, Mandarine, Sage, Caspian, Sage, Ruby, Sage, Caspian.

Let’s Begin!

First start by needle felting your ball shapes out of core wool.

Below is our standard process for needle felting a ball.
You can right+click to save this picture and share it with a friend!


needle felting a ball tutorial

needle felting a turkey tutorial

Using core wool, needle felt a ball for the body and a small ball for the head.
Cover the needle felted ball for the body with the desired color.
Cover the head with a color, or wait until it is attached…either way works!
Use a 36 gauge felting needle to attach the head to the body by poking all around the perimeter;
needle felt  through the head at a diagonal to reach the  center for further attaching.


needle felting a turkey tutorial

Needle felt tiny balls onto the body of your turkey,
and slightly flatten the bottom so he/she will stand.

If desired, draw and cut out a small template for your wings.

Place the template on top of the wool and begin needle felting (sculpting) the wool by felting all around the sides towards the template. Continue working around and around, but leave the end towards the point loose and un-felted. Flip the wing over and needle felt the other side as well. As your wing begins to get as small as the template, put your template on the foam under the wing and continue needle felting towards the shape of the template.

needle felting a turkey tutorialneedle felting a turkey tutorialneedle felting a turkey tutorial

 Using a template is purely optional….
You can also simply pull off two small tufts of wool for the wings and shape with your felting needle,
leaving the ends loose for attaching to the body.
Do not attempt to attach the wing to the foam, just bounce off the foam the best you can…although it will slightly attach.
Gently peel the wing off the foam and needle felt the opposite side, continuing to shape and round the wing.

needle felting tutorial
One of our methods for needle felting the tail feathers started with a semi-round tuft of clay wool batting.
We cut a circle out of paper and traced around it with our felting needle to outline a circular shape as a guide.

needle felting tutorial Using our felting needle, we created a scalloped edge.

needle felting tutorial

We then applied colored wool on top of the base,
and continued to shape the tail feathers with our felting needle.

Use a small patch of wool to attach the tail feathers to the body.

needle felting a turkey tutorialneedle felting a turkey tutorialneedle felting a turkey tutorial

Our 2nd turkey got more of the “hand tail feathers”.
Needle felt the “fingers” or feathers out of the desired colors of wool
and lay them out in a slight fan or overlap. Then needle felt the cluster on to your turkey.

needle felting a turkey tutorialAttach the wing by gently folding the un-felted edge under
and needle felting it to the body. You can allow the wing to stick out
our gently needle felt it to lay down closer to the body.

needle felting a turkey tutorial

For the beak, pull off a small tuft of wool in the desired color.
Begin needle felting a small point right in the middle.
I am using a 42 gauge felting needle which is very fine.

needle felting a turkey tutorialPeel the wool off the foam and fold to a point opposite
of the spot where you needle felted in the center.
needle felting a turkey tutorial

Needle felt and shape into a small cone by rolling your wool
on the foam and needle felting at a shallow angle. Leave the base
un-felted where it will attach to the head.

needle felting a turkey tutorialPlace the beak on the face and needle felt it into place,
continuing to shape as desired.

Add some needle felted eyes to your turkeys and they are ready for the table!
…for ACCENTS, Not food :O):O)

2 thoughts on “Needle Felting a Turkey – Fun & Easy Tutorial

  1. When my husband helped man the Prostate Cancer Support booth at the local Farmers Market awhile back, I killed time by wandering around talking to the vendors. One lady raises sheep [we live in the semi-rural central California valley] and had wool rovings for sale. I asked what the heck a ‘roving’ was and ended up talking to her for an hour. Bought a packet of assorted colors of wool- just holding it in my hands was a magical experience! Long story short, I now have a small felting kit that I take with me EVERYWHERE… To put this in perspective, I am a graphic artist and have done goldsmithing, needlework/fabric art, beadwork, wearable art, assemblages, and sidewalk chalk art at one time or another. It’s great fun to mix and match different media and see what I come up with~~~


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