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Make a Bird Feeder from Vintage Dishes | Outdoor Craft Idea

Make a Bird Feeder from Vintage Dishes | Outdoor Craft Idea
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I was at a friends house recently and she had these adorable bird feeders made from tea cups and saucers in her garden.  I was smitten– as someone who loves to feed backyard birds, I knew I wanted to make a bird feeder of my own.

My friend’s bird feeders were made with tea cups– Victorian style cups with mismatched saucers that looked like ones you would have with Alice and Wonderland at a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party.  They were beautifully decorated with painted flowers and gold trim, each cup and saucer different than the next.  I do not collect tea cups, so I knew if I were going to make a bird feeder like hers, I would have to come up with a substitute.

I did collect enamelware once upon a time, and I came across this vintage blue and white enamelware cup and saucer.  It was perfect for trying out this bird feeder project.

Enamelware cup and saucer turned into bird feeder
Photo/Art by Bonnie Thomas
Make a bird feeder with enamelware cup and saucer.

Materials to Make a Bird Feeder from Vintage Dishes

Vintage tea cup and saucer

Industrial strength glue such as E6000

String, ribbon, or wire



Directions to Make a Bird Feeder from Vintage Dishes

1. Thoroughly clean and dry the cup and saucer.

2.  Before applying glue, lay your cup horizontally against the saucer to get a feel for where it will lay the flattest.  Many saucers have a depression in the middle to hold the tea cup, so you will need to find the best spot for the tea cup to rest as flat as possible.  Make sure your cup is on it’s side with the handle facing upward (see photo).

3. Apply glue to the parts of the cup that will come in contact with the saucer.

4. You will need to hold your cup in place or find objects to balance it in place while the glue dries enough to hold it’s contact.

5. Allow the glue to dry and cure for 24 hours.

6. Tie ribbon, string or thin wire around the cup handle and secure a loop.

7. Hang the bird feeder from a small branch or hook.

8. Tip the cup back to fill the cup with birdseed and let the seeds spill around the edges of the saucer.


Once you make a bird feeder from a cup and saucer, fill it with birdseed.
Photo/Art by Bonnie Thomas
Once you make a bird feeder from a cup and saucer, fill it with birdseed.

Now that I have made my own bird feeder I feel like making more–these are a super easy project to make!  I plan to collect some tea cups over the summer as I explore different flea markets.  My biggest curiosity is how these cups will fare with our plethora of impish chipmunks and red squirrels.  I look forward to seeing how these feeder hold up to all our backyard visitors this summer.

Bonnie Thomas


Bonnie Thomas


Bonnie Thomas shares her ideas and instructions for simple Yankee crafts. Bonnie Thomas works full time as a child and family therapist in Southern Maine and is also an established artist and author. She has published two books via Jessica Kingsley Publishing, titled Creative Coping Skills for Children: Emotional Support Through Arts and Crafts Activities and Creative Expression Activities for Teens: Exploring Identity Through Art, Craft and Journaling. Don't miss her latest book, How to Get Kids Offline, Outdoors, and Connecting With Nature
Updated Monday, July 20th, 2015
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