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Wearing feathers for fashion is almost always to show the wearer is trying to show some measure of style, sophistication, and wealth.note  There aren't any ceremonial reasons for trying to look/be like a bird, the feathers are being worn just to look glamorous. Whether wearing large plumes, or trimmings of down feathers, it's all fashionable, in both fiction or in Real Life.

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Common forms are feathers on hand fans, feather boas, plumes on hats, trimming a rich lady's nightgown, trimming Pimped Out Dresses, trimming Sexy Santa Dresses, and decorating headdresses and showgirl skirts on dancers and showgirls in nightclubs.

Any examples of Peacock Girl, where the feathers are worn instead of a character having a peacock tail, would be examples of this.

Common in Costume Porn.

A Sister Trope to Pretty in Mink (often feathers are worn in a similar way as furnote ).

Compare Gold Makes Everything Shiny, Feather Motif.


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Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Advertising 
  • A 2010 ad for Diet Coke, called "Stay Extraordinary," ended with an actress patting down the feather skirt on her designer dress, before she got out of the limo and on to the red carpet.

    Anime & Manga 
  • A singer's club dress in Armored Trooper VOTOMS has large feathers spread out in the shoulder like fans.
  • Bleach: Before the time-skip, Yumichika accentuated his right eye with two pairs of feathers (multi-hued in the manga, red and yellow respectively in the anime). After the time-skip he's discarded those feathers for very fluffy feathered earrings and a slight feathering at the ends of his eyelashes on both eyes. His Animal Motif (courtesy of his zanpakutou) is the peacock.
  • On one of the original Fushigiboshi no★Futagohime pages, Altessa is shown wearing a peacock-inspired dress, with the plummage as part of her tiara. You can see it here.
  • Naru's wedding dress in Love Hina had the sleeves trimmed with feathers.
  • Donquixote Doflamingo in One Piece wears a feather jacket.
  • In Pokémon, Jessie's If I Were a Rich Man fantasy includes her wearing a feather boa. Another fluffy boa is worn by a Socialite on the St. Anne.
  • Raijuta Isurugi from Rurouni Kenshin wears large shoulderpads made of black feathers. In an extra page, the author admit that he regrets giving him those, as they take a long time to draw.
  • In the Sailor Moon episode, called "Wedding Bell Blues" in the dub, some of the wedding dresses are trimmed with feathers.
  • In Saint Seiya, the (male) god Hypnos' armor has stylized peacock feathers and a quasi-Holy Halo. This is Shown Their Work since Hypnos would be depicted as a peacock in paintings.
  • Science Ninja Team Gatchaman: A white Feather Bikini, paired with a feather Showgirl Skirt and headdress, is worn by a lady in a carnival style celebration being described.

    Comics 
  • Some DC Comics stories set in 1880s Gotham City have shown Mayor Theodore Cobblepot with a feather in his top hat, and his coat seems to be lined with plumage; a Call-Forward to his descendant's fondness for birds.
  • In the comic adaptation of Star Trek: The Next Generation, issue #2 was a Christmas Episode, where the crew had a party on the holodeck, and Dr. Crusher wore a dress with a brown feather boa.
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    Film - Animated 

    Film - Live Action 
  • After David's pants are torn in Bringing Up Baby, he's forced to wear Susan's feather-trimmed nightgown while staying over.
  • In The Carpetbaggers a lady wears skimpy pink feather outfit in a decadent party.
  • Jennifer Lopez's white dream dress in The Cell is largely covered with feathers.
  • The Busby Berkeley Number "Spin A Little Web Of Dreams" from Fashions Of 1934 used plumes everywhere, to use up an overstock the design house ended up ordering.
  • Gone with the Wind: Rhett makes Scarlett go to a party in a fancy red dress in is heavily trimmed with plumage.
  • The Playboy Bunny outfit Elle was tricked into wearing in Legally Blonde had a feather-trimmed neckline.
  • In Love Before Breakfast, Kay wears a costume that has so many feathers on her hat and dress that she might fly away.
  • Some of the dresses in the Marie Antoinette films are feather trimmed.
    • In the 1930s version, Marie wears a dress where the skirt almost entirely covered with feathers.
    • In the 2006 version, Marie has a pink feather-trimmed dress and matching muff, while her lady-in-waiting wears a dress, muff, and hat trimmed with white down. They wear it in a scene to show how boring and monotonous the ceremonial life in Versailles was becoming.
  • Countess Helene in Monte Carlo wears a feather-trimmed dress and cape; she also carries a large ostrich-feather fan at one point.
  • Satine's "Pink Diamonds" dress in Moulin Rouge! has a Showgirl Skirt of pink feathers, which she used to impress the Duke (or who she thought was the Duke).
  • The Mummy Returns: Anakh-Su-Namun's reincarnation evidently wanted to look good when her men were attacking the O'Connell home, as she wore a glittered evening dress and a feather boa.
  • In Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Will Turner wears one when he saves Jack Sparrow from his execution at the end of the movie. Amusingly, when the two are cornered at the back of the fort, Jack finds the feather irritatingly getting in his face and blows it away.
  • Shanghai Lily in Shanghai Express (1932) wears a prominent black feather costume.
  • The brothel owner in Tank Girl wears a black dress with very large feathers on it, arranged like Shoulders of Doom.
  • Theodora in Theodora Goes Wild wears many feathered dresses in her "wild" stage.
  • Given the setting, the film The Three Musketeers 1956 has a lot of feathered hats. Clothing Damage is frequently emphasized when peoples' hats' feathers get chopped in half.
  • Ginger Rogers wore a feathered dress for the "Cheek To Cheek" number in Top Hat. (According to Fred Astaire, the feathers caused problems in filming by flying off everywhere during the dance.)
  • The female lead in Underworld (1927) (1927) isn't called Feathers for nothing. She love wearing feathery clothes.
  • Daphne in Unfaithfully Yours owns a dress with plumes at the hips, that is important both in a fantasy and in reality.
  • Brian Slade in Velvet Goldmine wears several enormous pink feather boas, and a peacock-like fanned collar of white egret feathers over the course of the film.

    Literature 
  • In Bride of the Rat God, an actress at a party wears a dress with marabou straps, that slip down her shoulders as she gets more drunk.
  • One of the bizarre crimes in the Relativity story "Master Blankard's Pawn" is a thief that breaks in to the dressing rooms on a drag show and steals all the feather boas.
  • The Sorcerer's Daughter:
    • Princess Odette's desire to have fashionable swan-feather dresses at her court is what leads to her being turned into a swan herself, because she orders a slaughter of swans at Swan Lake, and the local wizard doesn't like it at all.
    • Also Odette appears at a royal ball in a magnificent flamingo-feather dress.

    Live Action TV 

    Magazines 

    Music 

    Mythology 
  • Any depiction of Krishna, ever (whether he's two years old and stealing butter or being his usual Bishōnen The Casanova self), ALWAYS has him with a single peacock feather in his headpiece.

    Pinball 

    Professional Wrestling 

    Tabletop Games 
  • The mimir.net fan-expansion of Planescape has the Peacock Lord, a refugee from the Beastlands, who wears a collar of peacock feathers.

    Theatre 
  • The 1992 production of Guys and Dolls had chicken costumes for "A Bushel and a Peck" that involved large feather tails.
  • Takarazuka productions are also rife with this. Just look them up on YouTube.
  • Tsukiuta's illustrator Jiku and stage costume designer Yoshida Miho both seem to love this:
    • Six Gravity's 2017 idol costumes, which appear in the 2018 stage plays, all feature feathers. Some have them around their arms or legs, some on shoulders, etc.
    • The Halloween Episode 4th stage play, Lunatic Party, has special costumes for all 12 members that are all black with feathers, lace, and glitter, and accents of each members' image colors. Details can be seen in the photo book that was published of the costumes.
    • In the fifth stage play, Rabbits Kingdom, a few characters have large plumes on their masks in the Masquerade Ball scene. The Bird Queen, as her title would imply, also has plenty.
  • In a Danish production of Wicked, Glinda's bubble dress has a skirt covered with white feathers.

    Toys 
  • Barbie has some outfits with feathers. This includes the "Angel Princess" doll, which has white feathers covering the shoulders of her dress.

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 
  • Penelope from Zoophobia's design is based around a white peacock, and also wears their feathers in her hair. Or possibly has their feathers for her hair, as it's implied she's an Avian, a shapeshifter that can move between a human form and a bird form.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • A George of the Jungle story told of the Oo-oo Birds, whose tail feathers had the effect of making the women who wore them look gorgeous, resulting in a rash of poachers plucking the hapless birds.

    Real Life 
  • Feather earrings and hats with feathers on are often in fashion. Same for handbags with feather decoration.
    • These hats were very popular in the early 20th century. It had the effect of decimating entire populations of herons, egrets, and other birds with fancy plumage.
  • The Fairytale Wedding Dress worn by Soraya Esfandiary-Bakhtiari, the second wife of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran. See it here and here.
  • The pink dress that Angie Harmon wore to the 2011 Screen Actors Guild Awards had a feather neckline and feather skirt. Also the designer based it off an earlier wedding dress she made.
  • Cee-Lo Green's performance at the 2011 Grammy Awards used rainbow-colored feathers.
  • Björk's infamous and oft-parodied swan dress that she wore to the Oscars one year. It wasn't just feathers; she rocked the whole bird.
  • Beyoncé wore a show Fairytale Wedding Dress with a feather-trimmed skirt at the 2009 BET awards.
  • The extravagant costumes worn by The Mummers during their annual New Year's Day parade in Philadelphia. Each individual costume has dozens of ostrich feathers, each of which can cost as much as $5. And since some of the clubs have several dozen performers marching down Broad St. in a performance...
  • There is a peacock-themed Fairy Tale Wedding Dress with a skirt covered with peacock feathers. It was made by Vera Wang and set a record for the world's most expensive wedding dress (at 1.5 million USD).note 
  • While not nearly as elaborate as the above example, Margaret Cho took inspiration from Björk's infamous swan dress and wore a dress covered with peacock feathers to the Grammys when she was up for Best Comedy Album. She recounts in Assassin that she didn't win the Grammy, but she was named Worst Dressed. This was met with cheers from the audience, since it came after a rant on how everyone at awards ceremonies dresses the same and that those named Worst Dressed are actually the best, since they're creating their own look.
  • Brian Eno wore these with Roxy Music and in his early solo career.

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