No Sew Wing Making


  • Adult large or extra large t-shirt
  • Scissors
  • Paper for pattern (or just eyeball it)
  • Acrylic paint or markers
  • Paint brushes if using paint
  • Cups for water (for paint)



The first thing you want to do is measure your child to make a pattern (or you can just cut out a shape without making a pattern). Have your child stand with their arms straight out to their sides.  You will measure from wrist to wrist across their back.  That will be how wide you will make the wings.  Half of that measurement will be how long you make them.

The bear measures 30” from wrist to wrist so the measurement for wings for the bear would be 30”x15”. The pattern I used was for a child’s wing span of 34” so half of that is 17” for the length. Since we are cutting on a fold, the pattern ended up being 17”x17”.  

  • Anything goes for the pattern shape but rounded edges seem to work best for t-shirt fabric as it tends to curl.

Lay out your t-shirt and place the pattern on the fold so that when it’s cut you end up with your finished wings.

Cut around the pattern.  Then cut 2 long strips of t-shirt that will become the laces that tie around the shoulders.  They should be ¾-1’ wide by about 20-25” long.  Then cut 2 shorter strips that will become the laces to tie around the wrists.  They should be ¾-1” wide by at least 10-15” long. When you stretch the ties they curl up. It’s best to cut the strips longer that you think you need so there is enough to tie.

Next, make small cuts in the wings for the ties to go.  Cut 2 holes on each wing tip for a tie that goes around the wrists and cut 4 at the top back for the shoulder ties to go. **I marked the spots with blue sharpie so it’s easy to see where to cut**

Thread your long laces through the shoulder cuts and tie.  Thread the smaller laces through the wing tip cuts and tie.

This is what the finished wings look like on the outside:

Now the wings are ready to be decorated with paint or markers!  Here is where children can get very creative.  Will they be painted like a butterfly you have seen in your yard?  Will you make them more like bird wings and paint or draw feathers?

Watered down acrylic paint can be brushed on.  Let dry for 24 hours then heat in the dryer for 10 minutes.  When you wash them, most of the color will stay in the fabric.  However, it is safe to say that the wing won’t need to be washed that often.


If you have older children, let them lead this project with their younger siblings. 

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