How to build your own steampunk wings

Updated February 21, 2017

Steampunk is a costume aesthetic that combines Victorian fashion and mechanistic elements with fantasy designs and concepts. Almost anything goes in steampunk, provided you have the right style. To create a pair of simple steampunk wings, apply the proper metallic decorative elements and clockwork pieces. This accessory combines high fantasy aesthetics of old with a more contemporary trend.

Spread out three or four full pages of newspaper on the floor of a well-ventilated area.

Lay out the wings on the newspaper, back side facing up.

Spray the wings with brass spray paint. Let them dry according to the paint manufacturer's instructions. Flip them over and spray paint the other side. If the wings have cloth straps and components, spread these out before spraying to make sure they are evenly coated with paint.

Paint the "bone" portions of the wings (the stick-like structural pieces) with silver or copper metallic enamel paint using a small craft paint brush. Let dry.

Attach small gears and cogs to the wings using hot glue. Position these pieces at hinge points on the bone structures of the wings or at evenly spaced intervals along these pieces. Place these pieces on both the front and back of the wings.

Fill the centre portion of the wings (the portion that sits flat against your back) with a cluster of cogs and gears. If you have a large clock face, place it here and arrange the other pieces around it. Start with a layer of smaller gears and cogs, then place the larger ones over it.


Collect cog and gear pieces from old clocks, hardware stores and surplus stores. If you can't find real cogs and gears of the size and shape you need for this project, cut them from soft plastic or glossy paperboard, then spray paint them with brass spray paint. Use metal pieces like brass charms, chains and old skeleton keys along with cogs and gears; if it looks like it could be Victorian in make, you can probably use it in your design. For best results, lay the cog and gear pieces out on the wings and find an arrangement you like before gluing them in place.

Things You'll Need

  • Old newspaper
  • Mesh costume bat wings
  • Brass spray paint
  • Copper or silver enamel paint
  • Artist's paint brushes
  • Cogs, gears, clock faces and other steampunk findings
  • Hot-glue gun
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About the Author

Lauren Vork has been a writer for 20 years, writing both fiction and nonfiction. Her work has appeared in "The Lovelorn" online magazine and Vork holds a bachelor's degree in music performance from St. Olaf College.