We had a fallen bluebird house laying in our yard for around 2 weeks before we did anything about it. Christmas was crazy, and we were scrambling to get everything done. A DIY birdhouse was the last thing on my mind. Once the holidays were over, it was time to freshen up the neglected parts of our little cottage. Before it fell, the bluebird house hung on a pine tree in our front yard for at least a decade. Every February, the beautiful bluebirds came home to nest. I wanted to give the bluebird house a worthy makeover. I love our little cottage, and thought it would be fun to redo the bluebird’s house exactly like our home.
The little bluebird house was structurally sound, but caked in dirt and full of debris. If you’re upgrading one that has been outside, use an old, dry paintbrush to remove the dirt and detritus from your birdhouse.
I filled a plastic cup half-full of our “wildfire” house paint color, and used a 1″ foam brush to apply several coats of paint. My youngest daughter, Stella, helped me.
Apple Barrel Gloss Red (20415) was the paint choice for the roof. It was the closest thing I could find to match the tone of our red tin roof. I covered it with two coats of red with the same 1″ brush. Wash the brush out well when you change from one color to another.
If you’re painting a wooden roof and want it to resemble tin, regardless of the color, add silver or gray, then orange paint, while the roof paint is still wet. This will give it a weathered tin roof look. Blend it a little bit with the foam brush until you achieve the look you want. I used Apple Barrel Tropic Orange (21341), and Folk Art Metallic Silver Sterling (662). I have lots of paint and usually use whatever I have on hand. In general, I like to use gloss or satin paint, even when I’m going to distress the object later.
The next step, if you want a time-worn look, is to sand your birdhouse in a few areas to rough it up a bit. Sand the corners, and a few select flat areas.
For embellishments, we added a pink glass knob, and black hinges, to make the front look like a door. Mark the places where you want your hinges/knobs, then drill in the knob and hinge screws. Make sure you don’t impair the opening of your actual door, you will need to open it to clean out the bluebird house after each nesting season.
Your DIY birdhouse is finished. Remember to hang your bluebird house in an open area 5 to 15 feet off the ground.
Happy Winter Bird Watching!
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