How to make Terra Cotta Pot Bird Feeders

by AEA on April 1, 2010

Free Patterns for Terra Cotta Bird Feeders

Terra cotta pot bird feeders are a fun and simple project. There are plenty of different ways you can construct your bird feeder. You can make smaller bird feeders that hang from a tree or from your home, bird feeders that make great centerpieces for an outdoor table or larger ones that can sit in your garden or yard. Here are some simple steps to follow to create you own unique masterpiece.

1. Collect you materials:

  • Terra cotta pots and saucers
  • Patio paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Terra cotta or other non-toxic sealers
  • Rope (if you would like to hang it)
  • Hot glue gun

      If you are looking to make a snowman birdfeeder you will also need:

  • Buttons for the mouth and eyes
  • mini wood pot for the nose (for the larger snowman)
  • Puff paint (the puff paint I used for the hat and nose has held up fairly well but my bird feeder is in a area where it is well guarded from the weather, it has also probably helped that I coated it with a non-toxic polyurethane)
  • mini pots, wire and wood balls (for the smaller snowmen)

2. Sand down any rough spots.

3. Clean your pots if needed. You want to make sure your pots are clean, so the sealer and paint will adhere to them well. You can use soapy water, water mixed with a little bleach or you can also stick them in the dish washer.

4. Let them dry! It is very important you let them completely dry before painting them. If there is still some moisture in the pots the paint will not adhere very well.

5. Next spray a non-toxic sealer inside and out. Since terra cotta pots are porous, it is important to seal them before you paint them and afterwards. This will help keep any moisture out. If moisture gets into the pots, the paint will bubble or flake off with time. They make a sealer that is designed for terra cotta that you should be able to find at your local craft store by their terra cotta pots. You can also use any water-based polyurethane or non-toxic acrylic sealant. Oil based polyurethanes are not typically recommended because the leave a yellowish tint and are flammable. Also make sure that the sealer you use is ok to use over a painted surface. Some sealers can ruin you paint job.

6. After your sealer is completely dry, you can start your painting. If you want to add a certain design, it might be helpful to use a pencil to help guide your painting.

7. If you are hanging your bird feeder, you will need to drill holes into the saucers so you can stick the rope through the entire birdfeeder to help ensure that nothing will fall apart. When it is time to add your rope, you will use knots to help secure them.

8. When you are finished with your painting, you can start putting together your birdfeeder. You will need a hot glue gun or other waterproof glue for your smaller pots. When using larger pots, you may not need to use glue due to the heaviness of your pots.

9. Touch up any paint jobs and add any final touches.

10. Seal your bird feeder, give it at least 2 – 3 coats. It is important to make sure your previously layer is dry before adding another one.


-Rubbing alcohol works great to help remove the price tags off the pots.

-Reseal your pots every few years to help them stay in better condition.

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