a tiny turkey tutorial

The other day I got it in my head to create turkey peg dolls.  Rummaging through my stash for blank pegs, I ran across a few small wooden bowling pins, finials and Parcheesi game pieces which I'd purchased with no clear intent beyond the thought that it would be interesting to paint different sizes and shapes.  It turns out that wooden finials make charming turkeys.

Before starting, I pulled up a photo of a turkey and learned that wild turkeys have blue & white heads.  I decided not to paint the heads of my turkeys blue, but I enjoyed digging through my felt scraps for shades of brown to create tails.


-- Peg dolls or other wooden shapes such as small bowling pins, game pieces or finials (I used one of these, one of these, one of these & these)

-- Red, yellow, white & various shades of brown wool felt (note: if doing this craft with young children, colorful paper will be easier for them to cut)

-- Watercolor paints, or brown acrylic paint, plus black acrylic for the eyes.

-- PVA or other non-toxic white craft glue

-- Beeswax polish (optional)

-- Paint brushes

-- A pencil

-- Scissors & pinking shears

Step 1: Paint your pegs, finials or other wooden shapes shades of brown.

Step 2: Use black acrylic paint or pencil to add eyes.  Rub with beeswax polish to give watercolor paint an nice patina (optional).

Step 3: Cut beaks and wattles from wool felt, and use white craft glue to attach to the face.


Step 4: Cut curved pieces of brown felt, glue together in layers, trim in white, and attach to the backs of your turkeys with white craft glue.  I found that pinking shears give a nice edge around the tails, mimicking the scalloped white edge on tails of real turkeys.


  1. You are awesome. Love them all. thanks for sharing

  2. Oh Margaret- you fill my heart with such joy! LOVE these turkeys- I have a soft spot for turkeys anyways but these little guys will have me smiling all day! Thank you!

  3. I've had you're book around for awhile and my kids adore it. We made a bunch of Halloween dolls this year and they will LOVE this turkey. I can't wait to share it with them. What a great idea!

  4. These are so very pretty, Margaret! I really want to make some too! I'll be sharing this on The Crafty Crow soon :)

  5. I just loved these peg doll turkeys as soon as I saw them! I'm going to make some for Thanksgiving!Thanks for sharing your tutorial!

  6. I love your little turkeys, Margaret! I made two for Thanksgiving last year, and we used them for decoration again this year (2019). We love them!!


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