Willy is the man who started it all. He is the owner and creator of Mother Plucker Feather Company and has been our fearless leader for over 40 years. Willy was born in Bamberg, Germany to Hungarian-born Holocaust survivors, and his family moved to U.S. when Willy was three years old, relocating to California when Willy was eight.
Willy started Mother Plucker in 1975 with a bag of feathers and a dream. While attending Los Angeles City College for marine biology, Willy noticed a friend’s feather earrings and knew that he could design an even better pair, using more integrated textures and colors. Willy bought his first bag of feathers for $40 from Joe at Hollywood Fancy Feather in Downtown LA. He made some small feather earrings, set up a card table at the Westwood open air market near UCLA. He took in $40 on his first day, and another $40 on his second day, which
was just enough to help him cover his rent of $85. Willy kept making and selling additional feather items; and, eventually, Mother Plucker Feather Company became a success.
Willy began to showcase his feather pieces at craft shows, swap meets and retail stores. He eventually branched out into designing custom clothing pieces and his signature Angel Wings, which brought him to the attention of Victoria’s Secret. He worked with Victoria’s Secret in designing and creating angel wings for their stores around the country.
Mother Plucker has now been around for over 40 years, making feathered apparel, fashion and home décor accessories and providing feathered supplies to the public. In that time, Willy has created some of the most iconic custom feather pieces, and worked with some of the world’s most famous celebrities and companies. Willy has worked on pieces for production companies like Disney, entertainment companies like Cirque du Soleil and dozens of commercials. He is the go-to for feather pieces for the TV industry and has worked on costume pieces for shows and films such as Will and Grace (NBC), RuPaul’s Drag Race (Logo), The Prom (Netflix), Empire (FOX), America’s Got Talent (NBC), American Crime Story (FX), American Horry Story (FX), Black-ish (ABC), Dancing with the Stars (ABC), among hundreds of others. He has become a go-to for custom pieces for celebrities such as Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, the Kardashian/Jenners, and hundreds of others. He also has created the signature wings that Jenny McCarthy wore as part of her 1993 Playmate of the Year issue, and the Nubian feather fans for a Michael Jackson music video.
In addition to his love of feathers, Willy loves animals and has two dogs, and a beautiful koi pond at his home. He is a lover of motorcycles, even if he doesn’t ride as much these days as he used to. A foodie through and through, Willy loves trying out the amazing food, especially sushi, here in Los Angeles.