I’m bucking tradition and dressing as a male peacock. Female peafowl are much less colorful—and child, please—do you think I want to dress as the less colorful half? No.
My intention with today’s outfit was not to replicate every feather in a peacock’s train. That would require 200 feathers, which would be some serious work. No, instead I am suggesting a peacock using a few feathers I created, a few real feathers I bought at a thrift store years ago, and a few decorations (also thrifted) that gave a peacock vibe.
Last year at the Goodwill store I found some decorations (approximately 100 of them) that grabbed my eye. The shape reminded me of peacock feathers and at $1.99, the price was right.
My peacock outfit simmered in the back of my mind for quite a while, but recently everything came together. I liked the idea of a poncho that I could wear not only today but on other winter days—one that had personality and color and was unlike any I’d ever seen. Clearly, I’d have to make one. So I grabbed this navy blue fleece while it was on sale at the fabric store and planned to embroider some feathers onto. Welllllll, embroidering a peacock feather is easier said than done. I’m sure it can be done but my first attempt at it wasn’t quite how I wanted it to be. It looked like a bunch of confused pine needles. So I opted instead to make feathers from fabric and to stitch them onto the poncho. I ended up using some beautiful fabric that my fashion designer friend Frana gave me a few years ago. It’s copper and gold mesh with sequins here and there, and although I hadn’t planned on it for this project, I’m delighted with the shimmery results. I’ve abstracted the feather shape but I think it still reads as a peacock feather.
These gorgeous birds really put on a show when all their feathers are on display. Did you know that after mating season, they shed their train? The feathers are gathered and new ones grow back. If only I shed peacock feathers instead of tumbleweeds of brown hair—the bathtub drain would look much more glamorous.
But hey, you can’t have everything.