Why are Peacock earrings so hard to find?

Maybe I should correct that statement to “Why are affordable peacock earrings that look nice so hard to find?”. I was really confused by limited selection and hefty prices when I was shopping back in August for a “clipped” pair of peacock eye feathers. Clipped eye feathers look like this:

I wasn’t able to find anything–granted, I’m in Colorado Springs, so my selection might be limited. At the time, I was shocked at how few items I could find on the internet. I ended up making a pair like this:

20111104-125448.jpg

Since August, I’ve started to see peacock earrings everywhere! On TV, at banquets, online. It’s like a peacock earring explosion. I’ve even ordered a couple pairs (at $29.99 each, yikes). I ended up returning the set I got from Urban Outfitters because the eyes were poorly matched. I returned another pair because the colors were completely different on the two earrings. Then I started making my own and I became a lot more compassionate.

The truth of the matter is that Peacock earrings are difficult make. Here’s why:

With most feather earrings, a crimp is wrapped around the feather quill.


Most feather earrings are constructed by wrapping a crimp around the quill of a feather. These quills are virtually all flatter on the front and back sides of the feather. This makes situating the crimp properly a breeze.

Here's a cross section of the Quill on most feathers. The quill is usually flatter on the front and back sides of the feather

One major difference that makes Peacock feathers more difficult to work with is the shaft:

In this close up, you can see how the shaft actually appears to stick out from the back of the feather.

Peacock feathers have a shaft and quill that is perpendicular to most other feather configurations. Rather than the flat part of the quill matching up with the flat back and front of the feather, a peacock quill is flatter on the sides! This makes achieving a nice wrap very difficult. You end up with a lot of feathers getting broken, beat up, or crimped sideways. It really makes the whole process frustrating!

The second thing that makes peacock feathers difficult to work with is probably just a personal hang up of mine. When I purchase peacock feathers, I want authentic, natural peacock feathers. I don’t want “dyed to match” or “enhanced” peacock feathers. Many of the earrings that I’ve looked at don’t list whether or not the feather is dyed or painted a bit. I generally end up finding out the hard way–I had one feather that “ran” as I went out in the rain. Another feather looked very different on the front (a really beautiful turquoise and dark blue) and was all green on the back. Frankly, there’s nothing wrong with dyed to match or painted feathers–I use dyed feathers all the time. I guess that I’m just picky about peacocks. Is anyone else?

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