Check out these suggestions, most being easy, inexpensive and fun, for homemade birdhouses.

Chalkboard Birdhouses

This design is easy, inexpensive and loads of fun for all ages!

Supply List

McKinney Online - Chalkboard Birdhouses

  Unfinished birdhouse, any design

  Chalkboard paint (I used several new colors by Martha Stewart.)

  Chalk, any color

  Paintbrush

 

Instructions

McKinney Online - Chalkboard Birdhouses

1. Simply paint birdhouse with chalkboard paint.

 

 

 

2. Once the paint is dry, coat the birdhouse with a layer of the chalk and wipe off with a clean cloth. This cures the surface for your drawings.

McKinney Online - Chalkboard Birdhouses

3. It’s now ready for you to draw or write on with chalk.

Kids love to write and design ... so let them go for it!

 

Moss–Covered Birdhouse

McKinney Online - Moss-Covered Birdhouse

Moss adds age and interest to your garden objects by creating a time-worn patina.

 

Supply List

McKinney Online - Moss-Covered Birdhouse

  Birdhouse (new or old)

  Living moss from your yard or packaged, storebought moss

  Buttermilk

  Water

  Blender

  Paintbrush

 

 

 

Instructions

McKinney Online - Moss-Covered Birdhouse

1. Dig up moss or use the store-bought variety (gently wash off as much of dirt as possible).

 

McKinney Online - Moss-Covered Birdhouse

2. Blend 2 cups buttermilk, 2 cups water and a handful of washed moss. You should have a milkshake consistency.

 

McKinney Online - Moss-Covered Birdhouse

3. Paint mixture on birdhouse.

 

4. Place your birdhouse outside in the shade.

5. Mist with water often.

You should see your moss growing in about three weeks. Remember: Moss, shade and moisture are friends.

 

 

Pique Assiette Birdhouse

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

This project is a bit more difficult, but it’s fun and incredibly rewarding ... and a stress reliever, too! Pique assiette is a French phrase that means “thief of plates.” It’s a technique that uses broken china for mosaics. I chose to use this process on an existing birdhouse lamp I had.

 

Supply List

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

  Birdhouse (new or old)

  Ceramic pieces (from new or old broken china, such as plates, cups and saucers)

  Protective eyewear

  Mosaic wheeled glass nippers or tile nippers (purchased at any hobby store), or you may use a hammer and cloth

  Premixed grout (sanded or unsanded and purchased at a hardware store). I used unsanded for a rougher texture.

  Quick glue

  Paper towels

  Water

  Sponge

  Plastic bags (for organizing)

Instructions

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

1. Using safety glasses, break the plates or cups with nippers. (Or if you’re looking for some stress relief, break with a hammer and cloth.)

 

 
McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

2. Apply small amount of glue to ceramic piece and place onto the surface of the birdhouse. Continue until you have your desired mosaic design. (Note: You can mosaic the entire birdhouse or small areas of the birdhouse. For the seasoned crafter, you can create lots of different patterns.)

 

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

3. Using a putty knife or rubber spatula, spread premixed grout all over the birdhouse. Be sure to fill in all crevices for a unified look.

 

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

4. To smooth out grout, use a tile float or spatula.

 

McKinney Online - Pique Assiette Birdhouse

5. After a few hours, gently clean your tiles with a damp sponge to remove the grout residue.

 

6. Allow your pique assiette birdhouse to cure for a few days before displaying.

 

About the author: Carolyn Kubes is a local freelance writer and offers many unique decorating ideas on her Facebook page. She can be contacted at carolynkubes@yahoo.com or followed on Facebook.

About the photographer: Patti Richardson is a McKinney-based photographer and writer. Contact her at pattirichardsonphotography@gmail.com or visit her photography website at pattirichardsonphotography.com.