Paper Plate Turkey: A Festive Craft for Thanksgiving Fun

These Nature Turkeys use items found in nature and make a really adorable children’s craft, perfect for Thanksgiving.

Just in time for Thanksgiving, we’ve got this adorable turkey craft for you to try! What we really like about it is that, save from the cardboard foundation, everything you need is found in nature.

Get ready to gobble up some crafting fun with this adorable Paper Plate Turkey! This easy-to-make project is perfect for kids of all ages and brings a touch of Thanksgiving cheer to your home. Let’s gather our supplies and dive into the world of colorful feathers, googly eyes, and a whole lot of creativity!


  • Paper plate
  • Brown acrylic paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Pencil
  • Black marker
  • Color papers (brown, red, orange, yellow)
  • White paper
  • Orange pipe cleaner
  • Eyeshadow
  • Q-tip

Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. The Body: Paint the paper plate brown and let it dry completely. This will be the turkey’s body, ready to showcase its vibrant feathers.

  2. The Head: Draw a circle on brown paper for the head and cut it out This is where the turkey’s personality will shine through with its eyes and beak

  3. The Wings: Unleash your creativity and draw two large wings on brown paper. These will help the turkey soar through the Thanksgiving festivities.

  4. The Eyes: On white paper, draw two circles, one small and one large, for the eyes. Cut them out and get ready to bring the turkey to life with its expressive gaze.

  5. The Beak: Draw a beak on orange paper and cut it out. This will be the turkey’s way of gobbling up all the Thanksgiving treats.

  6. The Wattle: Add a touch of realism by drawing a hanging skin under the beak on red paper. Cut it out and prepare to give the turkey its distinctive look.

  7. The Head Assembly: Glue the eyes onto the head, followed by the beak and the wattle. Use a black marker to add black dots to the eyes, giving the turkey a lifelike appearance. Don’t forget to add a touch of blush with eyeshadow and a Q-tip for a rosy glow.

  8. The Feathers: Draw and cut out three feathers each from red, orange, and yellow paper. These colorful feathers will make the turkey stand out with its festive plumage.

  9. Feather Placement: Start by gluing one yellow feather behind the paper plate, followed by three feathers each of red and orange in a pattern of your choice. Let the turkey’s personality shine through with its unique feather arrangement.

  10. Head and Wings: Glue the head onto the turkey’s body and add the wings to complete the majestic look.

  11. The Feet: Cut up an orange pipe cleaner to create two feet for the turkey. Fold the ends over to form the feet and glue or staple them onto the turkey’s body. Now, the turkey is ready to strut its stuff!

  12. Finishing Touches: Use a black marker to draw breast feathers onto the turkey, adding a final touch of detail to its Thanksgiving attire.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully created a Paper Plate Turkey that’s ready to bring joy to your Thanksgiving celebrations. With its colorful feathers, expressive eyes, and charming beak, this turkey is sure to be a hit with kids and adults alike.

Additional Tips:

  • Get Creative: Experiment with different colors and patterns for the feathers to create unique and personalized turkeys.
  • Make a Family of Turkeys: Create turkeys of different sizes and colors to represent the whole family.
  • Turn it into a Mobile: Attach strings to the turkeys and hang them from the ceiling for a festive Thanksgiving mobile.
  • Use as Wall Decor: Glue the turkeys onto a piece of cardboard or construction paper to create a Thanksgiving-themed wall decoration.

With a little imagination and these simple steps, you can create a Paper Plate Turkey that will bring Thanksgiving cheer to your home. So, gather your supplies, get crafty, and let the Thanksgiving fun begin!

Materials needed for Nature Turkeys

Everything you need to make your turkey is found in nature, with the exception of the cardboard base. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Cardboard: To make it sturdy but still easily cut through, I used medium weight cardboard.
  • Feathers: Any feathers will do, though we used actual turkey feathers for our turkey. Although real feathers are best, you could also make your own using paper or another material!
  • Autumn foliage – While our pear tree had the only remaining autumn foliage in the yard, any vibrant foliage will do!
  • Acorn caps: These will serve as the turkey’s eyes, but googly eyes will also function nicely if you are unable to obtain acorn caps.
  • Twigs: Two gnarly-looking twigs with three prongs each are required. These will be the turkey’s feet.
  • You’ll also need glue, scissors, and a marker!

How to assemble nature turkeys

  • Body and head: To create the body and head, first cut out two circles from cardboard. I traced the head using a mason jar and the body with a large cereal bowl. Once you trace and cut out, set aside.
  • Gather several vibrant autumn leaves to use as the body feathers. Attach a row of leaves to the bottom of the body with hot glue. Next, add a second row above that that slightly overlaps, and lastly add a third row that slightly overlaps the second row to mimic the pattern of feathers on a bird.
  • Attach head: To create the turkey’s head, adhere the smaller circle to the top of the larger circle using glue after adhering all the leaves to form the feathers on the body.
  • Tail feathers: Turn the body over and adhere several turkey feathers in a row around the circle with hot glue. Work your way around the circle, starting at the bottom, to reach the opposite bottom side. You can add as many feathers as you like, stack them, or just add a couple!
  • Eyes: To make the turkey’s eyes, cut two acorn caps into equal sizes. Make a sizable pupil in the center of each acorn cap with a black marker. Next, adhere them to the center section of the smaller circle using hot glue.
  • Locate an orange leaf to serve as the turkey’s beak. All you have to do is cut out a triangle and adhere it to the cardboard beneath the eyes using glue.
  • Feet: Gather two small, gnarly twigs with three prongs on one end for the feet. Any kind of twig will work; it just needs to have a bird’s foot-like appearance. Then glue it onto the bottom of the body.
  • Hat: Using the cardboard scraps, cut out a hat shape, color it in, and glue it to the top of your turkey’s head. This is completely optional, but I thought it gave the bird a really cute appearance.

DIY Origami Funny Cute Bird Beak Face Mask Handcraft | Wow Crafts


What kind of beak does a turkey have?

The American turkey has a beak that is primarily yellow, although parts of the beak can be brown or black in color. In addition to the beak, turkeys also have a fleshy flap of skin above their beak called a snood. The snood is bright red in color and, in males, will engorge and become brighter during courtship rituals.

How do you make a Turkey with a wattle & beak?

Grab the 3 basic shape cutouts and attach a wattle and beak to each one. Add googly eyes above the beak. The template includes 3 different shapes for the tail feathers. Select tail feathers in your chosen shape and colour and attach the paper cutouts to the back of the paper turkeys. Complete all 3 shape turkeys.

How do you make a Turkey with a snood & beak?

Glue the snood and beak on the brown body. Add the googly eyes above of the beak. Make a hole at the bottom of each feather as well as the body and attach all the feathers to the back of the body with the help of a paper fastener. Use paper and our turkey craft template to make these adorable turkeys with your kids for Thanksgiving.

How do you make a paper Turkey with tail feathers?

The template includes 3 different shapes for the tail feathers. Select tail feathers in your chosen shape and colour and attach the paper cutouts to the back of the paper turkeys. Complete all 3 shape turkeys. You could give each turkey a mixture of different shape tail feathers or have them all matching.

How do you make a turkey head?

Grab a paper plate and paint it brown. Draw a circle for the head on brown paper, and cut it out. Draw two large wings. On white paper, draw a small and large circle for the eyes, then cut them out. Draw a beak on orange paper, and cut it out. Draw a hanging skin under the beak on red paper, and cut it out. Glue the eyes on the head of the turkey.

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