There are so many things to love about flapper style. The carefully waved bobs, the exaggerated makeup, the intricately beaded and fringed dresses, and a general zest for life—these are all things I’m trying to incorporate into my life in 2013.

Left: source unknown; right: Het Leven magazine, 1920.

For inspiration, I’ve been poring over photos of women in the 1920s, and I’ve also been dazzled by their freaking awesome headwear. Felt cloches, jeweled headbands, and elaborate crowns were de rigeur back then—you could probably pick one up at your local department store. Now, alas, they’re much harder to find. Lucky for us, this one—a simple, sparkling feathered halo inspired by the crowning glories of yore—is not only easy but also mighty cheap to make at home.

What you’ll need:

  • Beads of various sizes and shapes
  • A whole bunch of crafting wire that’s thin enough to run through your beads
  • Feathers of various sizes (I used a large peacock feather and some smaller white feathers).
  • A flat pendant or brooch with lots of openwork (holes) that you can easily weave wire through (I got mine in the clearance section at Michaels).
  • Scissors

How to make it:

1. Cut a length of wire long enough to fit around your head (it should rest on top, like a halo, without being too tight or falling onto your ears). Leave an inch of space extra for later. I like to use crafting wire because it’s strong, malleable, and extremely easy to thread beads onto.

2. String a bead onto one end of your wire, then loop the end of the wire down and twist it under the bead so that it’s secure, like a knot. This will prevent all your beads from sliding right off!

3. Fill the wire with beads until you have roughly an inch of bare wire left. Take that inch and twist it multiple times around the first knot you made, making sure it’s secure.

Pretty, right? You can stop here if you want, or continue on if you crave MORE FLAIR.

5. Cut a piece of wire that’s a few inches long. Take out your largest feather, and place a few of your smaller ones around the base. Form a bunch by pinching them together at the quills (the little “stems” at the bottom). Then wrap the wire tightly around the quills to keep them together.

6. Press your brooch or pendant against the base of the feather bundle, then take loads of wire and just weave it through the openwork and around the feathers over and over until everything is firmly held in place.

7. Use even more wire (so much wire!) to attach the feathers to your wire halo, again, weaving the wire through the openwork and wrapping it around the halo—repeat until the pendant doesn’t move when you gently shake the halo. The wire is sturdy enough that the feather(s) should stand tall when you finally place the halo atop your head, you angel, you. ♦