Thanksgiving | Turkey assemblage

turkey robot

I’ve been a little obsessed with “turkey robots” lately. Some people call them “turkey assemblages.” Or “upcycled turkeys.” Or “steampunk turkeys.” Whatever you call them, they’re out there, and I love them.

steam punk turkeys
I’ve been storing images of some of my favorites on Pinterest and keeping my eye out for parts to make my own.

upcycled turkey
 A few weeks ago, I found an old vegetable steamer in a thrift store.

upcycled turkey
I bought it, knowing that the flaps on the basket would make perfect turkey feathers.

turkey assemblage
I also bought this thing. I’m not sure what it is. Maybe a tea strainer? But when I looked at it, I saw a turkey head.

turkey assemblage

After I got my turkey parts home, I disassembled the steamer and soaked the pieces in vinegar for a few minutes to remove the lime scale.

turkey craft
The bright, shiny aluminum wasn’t working for me, so I slapped a quick coat of brown acrylic craft paint on everything.

Rub 'n Buff on metal
Then I smeared Spanish copper Rub ‘n Buff over the paint. (Rub ‘n Buff doesn’t adhere very well to shiny metal; hence the basecoat.)

making a turkey from upcycled parts
 When the Rub ‘n Buff dried, I buffed the pieces with a soft cloth and started assembling the turkey.

picture hangers
For the feet, I found one of these picture hangers in the hardware stash in my basement. (And then I had to go down to the hardware store to buy a second one.)

picture hangers

They got a basecoat of brown acrylic craft paint, topped with Spanish copper Rub ‘n Buff, too.

making a turkey assemblage
The beak was made from an old earring. I just snipped the end of it off.

Thanksgiving craft

I found a couple of washers for the eyes.

turkey assemblage

I put a bolt through the hole on the bottom of the turkey’s head and stacked six nuts on it to act as spacers.

turkey craft project

The head was screwed into a hole in the center of the body.

turkey robot

Here’s what the head looks like from the front.

Thanksgiving craft And here’s how it’s attached in the back


After I had the head attached, I hung the feet off the rim of the turkey’s body.

making a turkey from salvaged parts

Then I glued on his facial features.

metal turkey

Here he is all done.

turkey assemblage

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