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11 Creative Homemade Bird Feeder Ideas For Your Garden

A beautiful backyard bird feeder is all it takes to bring a variety of birds to your garden. You can watch them snack on the feast together and chirp away without a care in the world. If you’re an avid bird watcher like me, you’ve probably bought a few bird feeders. I’m sure that they look picture-perfect. However, I am trying to take the DIY route as much as I can these days.

Luckily, it’s easier than you think because there are many homemade bird feeder ideas.

great tit plastic bottle feeder.
Image credit: DepositPhotos

I slipped into a rabbit hole during my browsing session that lasted for hours. At the end of it, I had bookmarked not one or two but over twenty different DIY projects.

I didn’t want my efforts to go to waste, so I thought about creating a grand post to help other bird watchers out. These ideas range from kid-friendly ventures to elegant gift-worthy designs. I love all of them and would like to see if one of these will strike your fancy.

Homemade Bird Feeders: Where to Get Started?

Easy Birdhouses & Feeders: Simple Projects to Attract & Retain the Birds You Want (Birdwatcher's Digest) Simple Projects to Attract & Retain the Birds You WantEasy Birdhouses & Feeders: Simple Projects to Attract & Retain the Birds You Want (Birdwatcher's Digest)Birdhouses, Boxes & Feeders for the Backyard Hobbyist: 19 Fun-to-Build Projects for Attracting Birds to Your Backyard (Fox Chapel Publishing)19 Fun-to-Build Projects for Attracting Birds to Your Backyard Birdhouses, Boxes & Feeders for the Backyard Hobbyist: 19 Fun-to-Build Projects for Attracting Birds to Your Backyard (Fox Chapel Publishing)Handmade Birdhouses and Feeders: 35 projects to attract birds into your garden35 projects to attract birds into your gardenHandmade Birdhouses and Feeders: 35 projects to attract birds into your garden

Bird feeders are a brilliant way to lure different species of birds to your garden. They also function as decorative pieces to beautify your hardscape layout. I love that bird house sizes and shapes are as varied as your thoughts. It’s a great chance to add your personal touches.

It also makes it easier for you to include children in the project.

So, how do you make bird feeders at home?

Start by gathering the right supplies. You’ll notice that most DIY projects require next to nothing regarding tools. You might occasionally need scissors and glue, twine, or other string to hang them in the garden. But that’s about it.

Building the feeders is as much fun as watching the birds. That’s because the designs allow you to unleash your imagination. You’re also invested in creating something environmentally friendly and easy on the budget.

Homemade bird feeder plans

The Complete Book of Birdhouse Construction for Woodworkers (Dover Crafts: Woodworking)

Some DIY bird feeders are easy: those where you make it really simple. But what if you wanted to build one of those bird feeder mansions?

If you are an avid DIY person, you may be able to come up with a design on your own. But for others, looking at a set of plans would make a lot easier.

This book, Complete Book of Birdhouse Construction for Woodworkers, looks like a great resource if you want to build a nice, sturdy, good-looking bird feeder or a birdhouse.

Fun Homemade Bird Feeder Ideas

1. Cute Window Bird Feeder

window bird feeder.
Image credit: Craft Invaders

Don’t you hate it when birds fly away as soon as you step into the garden? Craft Invaders figured out a brilliant way to avoid that. These guys have a knack for twisting traditional things into something unique.

That’s precisely what this homemade bird feeder is all about. You use a few old kitchen utensils, a florist’s wire, and suction cups.

Then voila! You’ve got a bird feeder to stick to the window sill. Once the birds get used to this exciting contraption, you’ll start getting feathered company flying over for breakfast.

Get instructions here.

2. DIY Bird Feeding Station

DIY bird feeding station.
Image credit: Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom

Not all of us are blessed with DIY skills. However, that doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy making bird feeders. It’s why I selected Jamie’s charming birdhouse idea for my DIY bird feeder list.

She bought a few miniature birdhouses from the dollar store, painted them in vibrant shades, and then glued them to a flat tray. See details here.

After that, you need a strong string that manages to handle the weight of the tray and the birdhouses.

The most significant advantage of this project is that it’s got a professional touch to it. I recommend using them as gifts for your fellow backyard gardeners.

3. Apple Birdseed Feeders

Apples filled with bird seed.
Image credit: Natural Beach Living

Kim knocks it out of the park with these apple ornamental feeders. I usually end up with a surplus of apples during autumn. I don’t always know what to do with the fruit once I have cooked up some delicious apple recipes. I don’t mind using the leftovers for this nature enthusiast’s cause.

Creating these is similar to the orange cups. Only this time, you’ve got to take out the core and some of the flesh instead of the whole thing. You then fill the apple with a mixture of gelatin and seeds. Then, place them on your picket fence or wall to welcome the hungry arrivals. Details here.

It’s a true homage to the crispy, crunchy season of fall and the abundant harvest it brings with it. I plan to team up these gorgeous snack bars with my pumpkin planters.

4. Mason Jar Birdfeeder

Birds eating from a Mason jar feeder.
Image credit: My Turn for Us

It’s a super simple idea lasting longer than the plastic varieties.

What do you need?

– mason jar
– a baby chick bird feeder
– medium-sized vintage lid

That’s it! You have to assemble these core components with super-strong glue. Then, let the glue set, and you are ready to go. Step-by-step instructions here.

5. Tea Cup Bird Feeder

teacup and saucer bird feeder.
Image credit: Craft Bits

Craft Bits is always coming up with classic takes on modern ideas. This cute teacup arrangement reminded me of tea parties held at Grandma’s. It’s charming and elegant to look at and fulfills the function of feeding the birds effortlessly.

I bet that it’ll make for a great Christmas gift for grandma. Imagine her surprise if she sees one of her china-patterned tea sets assembled for her birdies.

You can also set this up for a friend who is fond of ‘Alice in Wonderland.’ This certainly takes inspiration from the Mad Hatter’s infamous tea party.

6. Eco-Friendly Bird Feeder

Shoe nailed to a tree and filled with birdseed.
Image credit: Happiest Camper

The Happiest Camper uses her happy-go-lucky spirit and creative ideas to find a purpose for all unwanted things. Her eco-friendly take on bird feeding took me by surprise, but I warmed up to it soon enough. I never thought I’d use a shoe to feed birds, but here we are.

You can try this out with any shoes/boots you have outgrown. Drill them to a tree trunk or hang them on the branches. No bird will decline this unusual platter as long as they don’t fall off and are full of seeds. It also makes for a unique fall decor for your lawn.

Pro tip: It might sound obvious, but don’t forget to wash your shoes before using them.

7. Plate and Bowl Feeder

bird feeder made from a bowl and plate.
Image credit: Reuse Grow Enjoy

This blog helps you to turn your garbage into treasure by presenting wonderful ways to reutilize the products. So, what are we reusing for the bird feeder? Plates and bowls.

The exciting part about this homemade bird feeder is that it feels like an extension of the two ideas that have already been shared. That’s because it’s got a big plate covering the feeder like the first one. The plate shields the food from rain and snow, just like the lid.

Once again, you can use spare utensils from the kitchen to create this beauty. The other option is to go to a thrift store or neighborhood yard sale to find the plate and bowl. No matter what you do, it is an inexpensive way to feed the birdies.

The only difference is that this one requires some solid DIY skills. So remember to wear your protective gear if you opt for this project.

8. Fresh Orange Bird Feeder Kids Can Make

fresh orange filled with bird seed, hanging in a tree.
Image credit: DepositPhotos

Kids will LOVE making these citrus cups. Use fresh orange peels to make a bright bird feeder. The trick is to scoop out the fruit’s flesh instead of peeling the skin in layers.

After that, you must attach strings to the cup and fill it with the seeds. Then, hang it anywhere in the backyard for the birdies. The biggest bonus is that this is 100% environmentally friendly. So the children can learn about conservation and nature at the same time.

Pro tip: the bigger the orange, the better!

9. Coffee Mug Bird Feeder

a birdfeeder made from a plate and a coffee mug, and filled with grain and seeds.
Image credit: Ann’s Entitled Life

Ann teaches us to live life to the fullest without breaking the bank, so I wasn’t surprised to find a clever bird feeder on her blog.

Didn’t we do a teacup version of this? Yes, we did, but mugs are more weather-resistant and durable. They don’t break that easily, either.

I also thought that it makes an excellent gift for the coffee lover in your life. It’ll be a nice change from the customized coffee mug or coffee blend basket they usually get.

Why? This quirky gift is personal and gives a nod to their favorite beverage. It also adds a fun vibe to the garden too. The person you gift it to will always think of you whenever they see a bird snacking on this thoughtful gift.

10. Popsicle Stick Bird Feeder

a birdfeeder made from popsicle sticks.
Image credit: Tonya Staab

This is such a great idea! Use Popsicle sticks to build a bird’s food station. It’s a great way to include an interactive activity for your kid’s birthday party.

Details here.

11. Milk Carton Bird Feeder

bird feeder made from an empty milk carton.
Image credit: DepositPhotos

An empty milk carton can turn into a delicious buffet for the birds. You can leave it simple, like the one above, or get creative with decorations.

This would be a great kids’ activity: have an adult cut the box in the required shape and then let the kids run wild. I’m pretty sure they’ll develop various versions of this project.

In a nutshell, there is no hard and fast rule for making a bird feeder. You’ve got many interesting options that will match your style. I’d also encourage you to mix things up by adding a personal take to the design of this garden addition. What’s important is that you have fun while constructing your bird feeder, and you make it safe for your fluffy, feathery friends.

Did any of these homemade bird feeders spark your interest? I’d love to see YOUR homemade bird feeder ideas!

11 creative homemade bird feeder ideas.
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Adriana Copaceanu is a passionate nature lover living in the country on her dream property where she grows vegetables, lavender, and wildflowers that she shares with the wildlife they attract. When she's not in the garden, she loves spending time with her chickens and planning her next nature project. Check out her books below:

How to Grow Lavender for Fun and Profit: Lessons Learned from Planting Three Hundred Lavender Plants

How to Raise Chickens for Eggs: A Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy Chickens for Nutritious, Organic Eggs at Home

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