This post is sponsored by Chalk PaintTM by Annie Sloan.
This project evolved one afternoon recently when my 4 year old was building car racing tracks with pieces of wood from a pile of scraps and off cuts. I watched him for a little while until I was drawn to a flat piece of Redgum that was begging to be used. I have been itching to use the Chalk PaintTM by Annie Sloan on a new project. I had been testing it over the past month on garden pots and numerous other outdoor surfaces. With a garden project in mind I had recently collected a piece of pressed metal ceiling at a wreckers and thought it would make a pretty roof for a birdhouse. Out came a saw from Mr Fresh’s garage and away I went!
I love to do craft related activities but I have to admit that I like quick ones, or ones that can be done a little at a time with progress obvious at each stage! Anything that requires a perfectly polished finished and loads of time is not my thing. I like to work with what I have, utilising the natural beauty of the object and allowing that to shine rather than trying to transform it into something that is more refined. You will see from my pictures that my little birdhouse is rustic in nature and I like it like that. The pieces of wood are not perfectly square – did I mention that I used a hand saw for the first time ever?? I wanted to utilise the one piece of wood that I found. The appearance of this little bird house evolved on it’s own, based on the piece of wood it was made from.
Steps to make your rustic recycled timber birdhouse:
The wood I selected went from 5 mm-20 mm in thickness across the piece – it was irregular
1. Cut the piece of wood into 5 pieces – one longer base piece and four sides of the same size.
The measurements were: base 24 cm in length and each of the four sides 11 cm x 11 cm
2. Use very sharp skinny little nails to join 3 of the pieces of wood together – creating a back and two sides, securing them to the base as you go.
- Red gum is a hardwood that can split easily so if you prefer you may use a Liquid Nails glue instead to secure the pieces.
3. For the center piece of the box drill a few small holes, evenly spaced, in the shape of a circle then cut through them with a jig-saw to create the hole that the birds can use as an entry.
- I got Mr Fresh to help me with this part. I have never used a jig-saw and didn’t want to try it on my own.
- The alternative to creating an opening using a jig-saw would be to cutting the facing piece in half length-ways so that a bird could fly in at either the top or bottle depending how you position it. eg: you use a strip of wood across the front instead or leave it open at the front.
4. Cut the pressed metal to the desired size using tin snips and then secure it to the wood using small nails. Bend over the end of the nails and seal any gaps with silicone. The pressed metal has a natural fold so I took advantage of that to create the peak of the roof. The length of the piece I used was 31 cm.
5. Once the silicone has dried you can start to paint.
6. When the first coat of paint has dried you can assess if you need or want another coat.
7. Allow the paint to harden for a few days inside or under cover prior to exposing it to the elements. It will experience some natural wear over time.
- My little birdhouse is holding up beautifully in my garden. We have had some rain since it has gone out and it is showing no signs of degradation to date. I have also used it on some terracotta pots and garden bed edging with great results. In the picture below you may be able to just make out that I have used the same paint to color the top edging of the garden bed against the wall.
Chalk PaintTM by Annie Sloan is an enormously appealing product for me. No prep work is required on the surfaces that you are painting. I could have stripped the paint from the pressed metal that I was using but I did not bother and I love the effect it has taken on with the paint. You would need to strip the old paint off first if you are seeking a perfectly smooth finish.
I am a little addicted to these beautiful paints. They have a lovely texture and the color range is divine. The various colors may also be blended together to create your own shades.
I have painted one little terracotta pot that I did not allow to harden inside prior to filling and watering it and the paint has started to bubble/lift. The other pots I did that I allowed to harden are showing no signs of wear. Be sure to follow step 7 above and allow the paint to dry well and harden if you are using it on terracotta. It will experience natural wear and weathering over time in the outdoors.
My birdhouse colors are:
These are the Chalk PaintTM colors I used on my birdhouse:
Roof and entrance rim: Provence
Base: Old Violet
Front: Old Ochre
Find Chalk PaintTM by Annie Sloan stockists near you.
What garden ornaments have you made for your garden? I need a new project now. This one was fun and has me motivated to brighten up the garden before the cool weather hits.
*I was compensated for writing this post and supplied with the paint used in my project. My opinion and experience of the product is provided honestly.
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