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Scary Bird's Nest Candy Dish

Others might see birds as friends and toss them crusts of bread, but you see them in a more sinister, Hitchcockian light. Why not disarm the foul fowls by turning some of them (and their nest) into a frightful candy holder for Halloween?

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 2011


Our bird's nest is constructed with grapevine wreaths and filled with Spanish moss, tea-dyed eggshells, and birdseed-like sesame candy. Just as a tea bath can make paper look antique, it can make eggs look brown, old, and creepily rotten. The birds themselves are faux pheasants, with heads painted an ominous black. We like sesame candy because it resembles birdseed. You can use any candy you like; just be certain it comes in a wrapper.


For more ideas, scroll through our entire collection of Halloween Decorating Ideas.


  • 4 grapevine wreaths, in graduating sizes (Pictured: Grapevine wreaths, 10 to 18 inches, from

  • Floral wire

  • Spanish moss

  • Empty eggshells (Pictured: Large predrained goose eggs, $3.25 each, and predrained duck eggs, 85¢ each,

  • Loose feathers

  • Paintbrush

  • Black acrylic craft paint

  • Fake pheasants (Pictured: Feathered pheasants, 12 inches to 30 inches,

  • Craft knife

  • Paper clip

  • Ear syringe

  • Black tea

  • White vinegar 


  1. Stack the wreaths for a dense-looking nest. Use wire to join them together.

  2. To make tea-dyed eggshells: Use craft knife to make a small hole at each end of each egg. Pierce yolk with straightened paper clip; use ear syringe to blow out contents. In a bowl, mix strong black tea with a splash of white vinegar. Crack some shells. Rinse the insides with white vinegar. Add eggshells to bowl, and cover with a plate to weigh down. When desired shade is reached, remove shells and blow out tea with sy- ringe. Let dry before arranging.

  3. Fill the bottom of the nest with moss, and scatter eggshells inside, some cracked and others whole. Scatter feathers in and around the nest. 

  4. Use a paintbrush to apply paint to birds' heads; let dry. Arrange birds on and around the nest, using the wires on their feet to help them stand.

  5. Fill the nest and some of the cracked shells with candy.

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