To cover the frame, it helps to have something vaguely solid inside to attach the covering to. I’m going to make a base out of craft foam, then use the covering fabric to attach the foam to the headdress. (I know this sounds bass-ackwards. Watch….)
Mark out the length of the foam base, using measurements taken off the jig used to shape the wires for the frame.
The frame is basically banana-shaped. I've marked out an idealized version of the shape, based on the length of the frame and the width of the feather cage.
Cut a piece of fabric to cover the foam and frame. It should be roughly 2" larger than the foam on all sides. I'm using silver lycra, to make my life easier.
You might be wondering how silver lycra is ever the option that makes life easier. In this case, since I’ll be stretching it over a rather lumpy (blame the pipe cleaners) frame, the stretch of the lycra will actually make a multitude of sins into something that looks vaguely intentional. Also, since this fabric doesn’t fray at all, I don’t have to find a way to seal all the cut edges I’m about to make. That’s going to help a lot, especially when it comes to limiting the amount of ugly that occurs around the front and back braces.
Artfully glop hot glue onto one side of the foam, and affix it to the center of the WRONG SIDE of the lycra.
Center the foam/fabric construction against the frame.
Carefully place both foam/fabric and frame back onto the styrofoam head. The frame will hold the foam/fabric piece in place while you work.
Working in 2" strips, carefully wrap the lycra around the frame and hot glue it to the pipe cleaners and the foam. Try to be as neat as possible when going around the corners and the braces...
Continue all around, then trim back the lycra.
The lumpy of the pipe cleaners under the lycra looks a bit like some sort of embossed silver...
Now that we have something solid in the middle, we can glue down the feather cage. Use a lot of glue - you don't want this to wiggle at all.
The basic construction is done.... Now we just need to make it pretty.