Building Decorative Birdhouses


Making a decorative birdhouse is an ideal family or individual project and adds an element of personalization and beauty to your garden that attracts a wide array of birds. Create it as a gift or for your own garden decoration, building a simple wooden birdhouse or an intricately decorated and carved one. If you're building a functional decorative birdhouse, you'll need a few materials, some time and patience, and creativity.

Step 1

Use the saw to cut out five pieces of wood that measure 4 inches wide by 6 inches tall. Decide which piece will be the birdhouse door, and use the drill to cut a circular hole in the middle of this piece.

Step 2

Use the ruler or tape measure to measure out one 5-inch by 5-inch square for the base of the birdhouse, four sides of equal dimension but at least 1/2 inch smaller than the base and one single piece for the roof, which should be about 3 inches longer in the front to provide an overhang for the door.

Step 3

Sand around and on the edges of each piece of wood so they are smooth and will not splinter in your hands or harm any birds.

Step 4

Decide if you want to paint or stain the birdhouse pieces. If you choose paint, make each side a different color, the whole house one color or paint patterns and designs along the sides. For a more elaborate look, paint themes or settings like beaches, mountains, cities or gardens. Make sure the paint is nontoxic outdoor paint and that you give it enough time to dry.

Step 5

Secure the four side pieces together with wood glue to form a box on the base, then glue the roof on top with the overhang over the door. Keep in mind that wood glue usually needs about 24 hours to dry completely. Read the instructions before beginning.

Step 6

Decorate the birdhouse with your own touches and embellishments. Add anything from from straw and cotton inside the house for birds, to bird food trays or sequins and jewels. Attach things with wood glue like fake butterflies, birds, flowers or vines.

Things You'll Need

  • 1/2-inch plywood
  • Scroll or jig saw
  • Drill
  • Ruler or tape measure
  • Sandpaper
  • Wood glue
  • Paint and paintbrushes
  • Embellishments and decorating supplies


  • Building Bird Houses
  • Decorative Bird House Ideas
  • Decorating Bird Houses
Keywords: decorative birdhouses, building birdhouses, garden decoration

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.