Milk cartons can be recycled, up-cycled, and reused for just about any kid’s craft. One of my favorite ways to reuse a milk carton is by turning them into a bird feeder or birdhouse. With just a little paint, twigs, and a glue gun, you can turn a tired old milk carton into a beautiful and colorful bird feeder.
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Being home the past few weeks in quarantine, I’ve been trying to find new ways to keep my 4-year-old busy enough and off the iPad. Some days are tougher than others. This Milk Carton Bird Feeder actually kept us busy for a few days. Between the multiple coats of paint, hunting for twigs, Cricut work, and a final coat of sealer, it took 5 days to complete.
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I get that seems like too much time to invest in a simple but beautiful Milk Carton Bird Feeder, however, between video circle times with his preschool teacher, math and writing activities, and me still working, we were able to fit our bird feeder building into our dedicated outside time. My son and I worked on this project outside or in the garage so we could still get some much needed Vitamin D. And after an entire work/school week, working on this for short periods of time each day, I managed not to bore my 4-year-old too much and keep him interested just enough to finish it.
Milk Carton Bird Feeder Supplies:
- Milk carton (ours was made out of an almond milk carton)
- Acrylic paint of your choice
- Drill (or something to make a few holes in cardboard)
- Hot glue gun
- Permanent marker or Cricut machine
- Fabric or construction paper
- Clear acrylic sealer
- Start with a clean and dry milk carton. Drill 2 holes through the top (opposite the spout) to feed twine or fishing line through. This is how you will hang the Milk Carton Bird Feeder.
- Cut out an opening similar to mine on the front and back of the carton. (Tip: using scissors, cut at an angle to avoid jaggedness on the carton.)
- Under the openings (at the bottom of the milk carton), drill a hole on each side.
- Paint all 4 sides the same or different. We painted the front and back the same color and the other sides 2 different colors and then added some polka-dots. Let the first coat dry completely before adding a second and third if necessary.
- Glue twigs and small branches on the top of the carton to make a roof.
- Find a branch long enough to feed all the way through the bottom holes, leaving about 1.5” on both sides. This will serve as the perch.
- Cut 2 small strands of twine and 8 triangles from colorful fabric or construction paper for the banner.
- Once you have applied all coats of paint, glue the banner on above the opening. Be sure to leave room for the welcome sign.
- Spray 1-2 coats of clear protectant/sealer over the entire milk carton.
- Using a Cricut or permanent marker, make and add the welcome sign.
- Add another coat of sealer.
- Finally, add some birdseed and hang.
This Milk Carton Bird Feeder is recommended for hanging in a partially covered area but still accessible to birds. If it’s hung in the open, water will damage it. Let me know how yours turns out, I would love to see pictures!
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Meagan is in her mid-thirties and has been married for almost 10 years. She is a proud boy mom, happily navigating her way through the toddler years. She met her husband 20 years ago in high school; they got married 10 years later after graduating from the University of South Florida. Meagan currently helps run a family business with her parents and sister, while blogging about her life and taking care of her three-year-old son full time (at work)!
When she isn’t chasing her son around and constantly picking up Matchbox cars, she enjoys spending time with her family on a beach anywhere. She also loves decorating and organizing her home, delving into fun DIY projects, bargain shopping, and eating at unique restaurants. She also loves Barbecue anything and a good show or movie on Netflix.