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Farmhouse Bird Feeder

Give the birds in your yard a place to perch and snack with a farmhouse-style feeder made from an empty milk carton. Popsicle sticks, paint, and a few succulents never looked so cute.

milk carton upcycled into a bird feeder

Photography: Kara Whitten

Source: Martha Stewart

Introduction

This idea comes from our friend Kara Whitten of A Kailo Chic Life. To hang your bird feeder, poke holes into the top of the milk carton and use twine to hang it up in a tree or off the roofing of your porch. Fill with bird seed and enjoy an afternoon of bird-watching. For more ideas, scroll through our garden projects and learn more ways to attract more birds to your backyard.

materials

  • Milk carton

  • Craft knife (Martha Stewart Craft Knife, $8.49, michaels.com)

  • Popsicle sticks, full and half-sized (Artlicious Wooden Popsicle Craft Sticks​, $7 for 200, amazon.com)

  • Dowel rod, 1/4 inch (The Home Depot Hardwood Round Dowel, 95¢ each, homedepot.com)

  • Craft paint in white and black (Martha Stewart Family Friendly Multi-Surface Satin Acrylic Craft Paint, in Snowball and Black Belt, $2.49, michaels.com)

  • Paint brush

  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks

  • Miniature succulents (The Sill Potted Succulent Assortment, $98 for 6, thesill.com)

  • Twine or rope for hanging

steps

  1. Cut a hole into the side of the milk carton (this will be the opening for the bird to access the seed). Cover the milk carton with white paint; let dry between coats. You may need 2 to 3 coats to completely cover the print on the carton.

  2. Cut off the ends of the full-sized popsicle sticks to the length of the milk carton's front. Coat the full-sized popsicle sticks in white paint and the half-sized popsicle sticks in black paint; let dry completely.

  3. Use hot glue to attach the white-painted popsicle sticks to the front of the milk carton around the hole to resemble shiplap. To make the roof, glue black-painted popsicle sticks to the top of the carton.

  4. Add architectural details: To make a window ledge, coat the bottom of the window opening with black paint. To make a perch, cut the dowel rod to size, paint, and glue it to the front of the feeder. Add decorative touches: plant mini succulents on either side of the window ledge; use a black marker to hand-letter a name for your bird feeder—"The Seed and Feed" seems very fitting.

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