05 Jun

Clementine Crate Birdhouse

Clementines make winter seem shorter and they are very tasty. I go through a bunch of them when they are in season. So, I had several of clementine crates sitting around that I could not throw away. What to do with them? Hmmmm.

A birdhouse, yeah, that’s it. Can’t say if a house made out of these light wood crates will last in the weather, but it is worth a try. With a sturdy roof made out of an old license plate, they just might.

I used a power saw to cut the crates because I have one, but a hand saw or even an Exacto knife might work to cut the thin plywood. The corner pillar pieces are used at length, so there is no cutting required. An electric drill is also helpful in this project.

The slideshow below shows the major steps to assembling a birdhouse from these raw materials. If you have questions, just leave a comment or email me.


On the question of what to use for a perch: it is up to you. I used an old cabinet pull on one example and a coat hanger on the one shown in the slideshow. This is where you can get creative. Use whatever you like. I would suggest you keep it light because the plywood of the crates is thin.

To finish or not to finish: I used a single coat of polyurethane finish on the outside of this birdhouse because I had some leftover and I thought it might help weatherize the structure a bit. For your creation, it is your call.

Finally, if you should try to do this at home, I would love to see pictures of your creations. Send me a picture or connect with me on Pinterest, Facebook, or Twitter to share.

21 Jan

Project Plans

If you are looking for a project plan for a chair, bench, wall organizer, bed, or cabinet, check out Southern Living project plans. The archive includes plans for indoor and outdoor furniture. Each plan contains a materials list, cutting list, measured drawing, and build instructions. The plans are rated for degree of difficulty to help you decide if you are up to the task.

My particular favorites are the Adirondack chair, Outdoor Daybed, and the Picnic Table (which I think is cool for indoors, too).

Plans can be ordered for $4 and are delivered as a pdf via email.

30 Dec

Birdhouse Plan

Finally, I took the time to write down/draw the plan I used to make birdhouses that I posted here some time ago. I made another house from standard pine lumber leftovers and made this drawing. It is based on 3/4″ thick lumber, so you may have to adjust if you use something thicker or thinner. One thing absent from the drawing is a 6″ x 1 1/2″ piece of aluminum flashing that I nailed to the top of the roof to cover the gap between the sides of the roof.

I used pine this time, but I prefer using cedar or something more weather resistant. If you use pine, paint or stain it the exterior with a good exterior oil-based enamel or penetrating oil–preferably a penetrating oil. If you can use cedar, then no finish is necessary.

Unfortunately, I gave the birdhouse away as a gift before I remembered to take a picture of it. But it was similar to these.
Download birdhouse plan