Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thankful Turkey Keepsake

Every year I try to come up with an activity to do with my boys that will reinforce being thankful.

Thankful Turkey Keepsake

In 2007, I cut out leaf shapes from colored paper and used my trusty Xyron machine to stick them to the back of my entry way door. Each day my son wrote something he was thankful for. I had great plans to put the leaves in a scrapbook to forever remember the sweet things he wrote. Unfortunately, they got really stuck to my door. It was a disaster. (I won’t say who, but someone I know, just may have left them on her door for …oh say a year like this because it was soooo hard to get them off…) BTW, this one said Family Time…before I tried to rip it off the door;)

thankful 2007

Last year, I made these cute turkeys for my boys. They wrote what they were thankful for on a feather each day. It was nice but took a while to make two. They had their names on them and said “*name* is Thankful”. My boys really enjoyed this.

thankful 2008

This year I wanted to make something we could use every day…and then year after year! I know! Brilliant.

My friend Melanie over at Sugardoodle…wait, have I told you that I grew up with Melanie? I did. I know her and love her. Anyway, she has this Thanksgiving Countdown she posted from Valerie Lee. There is a download that is full of a whole month of thankful activities to do with your kids, like “I am thankful for Grandparents. Call and tell them I love you, I am grateful for you. “ Sweet!! Some of the days don’t work for us because of food, but the rest are just awesome. I’m going to print them out and put one in each pocket on my little keepsake. My boys will take turns revealing their note. Next year my little one will be a little older. He should be able to write his thankful things down himself. We will probably go back to writing our own things we are thankful for next year.

Alright, let’s make one!


Right click on the above image and save as for the pattern.

I am going to assume you have a little sewing knowledge, otherwise this would be waaaay too long of a post;)

You need

  • Fall colored felt for the feathers, beak and waddle.
  • Brown felt for the turkey and coverage too.
  • Peltex Pellon to make your hanging sturdy.
  • clear vinyl for the pockets
  • Ribbon or trim to hang it
  • the rest of your typical sewing needs;)

I cut out 18 of the outer feathers and arranged them onto some Peltex Pellon. It is quite stiff and will hold the shape nicely.


Do the same with 12 of the skinnier feathers. Lay them out on some Peltex too.


Sew them down to the Peltex and trim around the tops of the feathers. Here both rows of feathers are done.


It is hard to see, but I cut out some vinyl to the shape of the feathers (like a rainbow) to make the pockets.


This stuff is tricky to sew on. I placed a piece of tape over where I wanted each seam to be. Each feather is going to be the guide for my pockets. I stitched between each feather to hold the vinyl down. I used a short stitch length to make sure that the tape would come off easily.


I cut some brown felt to cover the white Peltex that was showing on both rows of feathers.


Then I just stitched the layers together. I layered the top row of feathers on top of the bottom row of feathers and stitched around the arch. I then stitched the top curve of the already assembled turkey to the stack of feathers. I was careful not to sew any of the pockets closed. I hand stitched a little ribbon to the top so I could hang it.


Can you see how the vinyl made little pockets? I am slipping one of the countdown notes into each pocket. Double check to see if my math is correct…there should be 30 pockets/feathers, one for each day in November.


Enjoy! If you make one, I would really like to see it.

I am thankful for my family. Every day of my life, I am amazed at the two amazing little boys that are mine! I don’t know how or why they are mine, but I am so thankful that they are! I am thankful for my husband who works very hard to provide for us, and who adores us with every part of his being. I am thankful for my extended family too. What a bunch of crazies we are!

What are you thankful for? Do you have an activity that you do to reinforce what you are thankful for during November?

**ETA Peltex is a Pellon product. It is basically a thick stabilizer. You can sew it in or get one that is fusable on one or both sides. You purchase it where all the stabilizers are.

The vinyl I used is the thickest I could get. They sell it to use for stuff like table covers etc.



Deb said...

Oh my holy crap is that ever cute!!! This would be fun to do with my school kids too (only on a much less involved scale. . .)!

Thanks for the link and for sharing your version. Love it!

Beansieleigh said...

LOVE this idea!!! If I only had TIME to make one!! Moving is really robbing me of my Holiday fun at these days!!.. but I'm trying not to let it get me down! I will definitely keep this in mind for NEXT year! Thanks for sharing this! ~tina

Natalie Meester said...

would you consider selling me one? I don't sew at all.

Pretty please?

Fall blessings,


Jen~ Lipstick and Laundry said...

WoW... Now we're talkin' turkey! That is amazing! I think I have time to try get one made for Thanksgiving ;) What is peltex??

greetingarts said...

Thankful for you, and your wonderful ideas and generosity in posting tutorials. I don't mean that to sound flippant at all, I really do appreciate your effort in creating and sharing things with us!

CitricSugar said...

I love Katrina's thankful tree but this is pretty darn cute, too! It must be wonderful to be part of such a creative bunch...

eatmoresmores said...

This is perfect! I hope that I can find time to make one this year.

Misia Pepa Adventures said...

What a great idea. I can wait to try it. Thanks you for sharing the pattern.

MJ @ 517 Creations said...

So, so cute!! Thanks for sharing this! I can't wait to make one. :)

MJ @ 517 Creations said...

I forgot to ask a question in my last comment...must be a case of "mommy brain". :) Where did you find your felt? Is is the rectangles that you buy at the craft fair? Or from a bolt? I LOVE the colors that you used!!

kw said...

Love it, love it, love it! This has inspired me for a Christmas Advent calendar. I have been wanting to handmake the kids one but was stuck on the construction...the vinyl is so smart! Great job, it's so cute!

Jaime said...

So clever! What a wonderful idea!

Jaimee @ Havenwood House of Boys said...

This is so sweet!! Great tutorial, too. I have a new craft blog and am doing a post on great Thanksgiving projects. I'm going to include this one!

: )