Birdhouse Painting Ideas for Kids

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Birdhouse Painting Ideas for Kids

I’ve been admiring colorfully painted birdhouses on Pinterest and in catalogs and imagining how lovely they would be in our own garden. We have a few birdhouses, and most, if not all, of them attract nesting birds each year, but they are not colorful birdhouses. Sigh. So silly, right, to think that a coat of paint would make such a difference?

But when I saw plain wood birdhouses on sale at A.C. Moore for 30% off their normal $7.99 price, I jumped at the opportunity to paint our own.

Birdhouse Painting Ideas for Kids

Painted Birdhouses



1. Paint the unfinished birdhouses with the liquid watercolor paint.

We started with three the plain wooden birdhouses and jelly jars of liquid watercolor paint. Liquid watercolors stain wood so beautifully (we’ve used it for a variety of wood art projects) that it was an easy decision to use them for the birdhouses.

Painted Birdhouses

We all worked on our birdhouses on a sunny, warm afternoon after school. Maia painted carefully and thoroughly.

Painted Birdhouses

Daphne painted exuberantly.

Painted Birdhouses

I love how the liquid watercolors soak into the wood like a vibrant wood stain.

Painted Birdhouses

2. Let dry thoroughly.

As soon as we had three painted birdhouses lined up on the patio table, the girls ran up the steps to swing and do acrobatics. Maia has been practising her cartwheels in the backyard. She also likes to jump from the swing set mid-swing, then immediately move into a modified handstand. I sometimes often wonder how quiet, bookish me gave birth to this agile energy bomb of a child.

Painted Birdhouses

The first three colorful birdhouses were followed by another four this weekend as the whole family sat around the patio table and painted together. And while I initially planned to either mount them along the back fence or perch them atop poles, we set each on top of the trellis posts as a sort of bird-lovers finial instead. The trellis is still rather bare (the climbing plants I added are taking their sweet time) but the birdhouses add color and whimsy, which I like.

Painted Birdhouses

Here’s the view through the patio gate.

3. Add a coat of acrylic varnish over the painted birdhouse. 

4. Mount the birdhouses. I haven’t actually mounted the birdhouses properly yet, but am thinking of using either simple u brackets (and a dowel) or mailbox brackets.

Painting Birdhouses with Kids

I’ve seen birds go into two of the birdhouses already, carrying twigs in their beaks, so my worries that they were too bright or too close to the patio were unfounded. We have a few plain birdhouses in the farther corners of the yard for the shy birds and these colorful abodes on the patio for those more comfortable with people and pizzazz.

Painted Birdhouses

We’d better mount them ASAP though as the birds are already moving in!

By the way, we have a window-mounted birdfeeder that we love as it allows us to watch the birds up close from our living room. I’ve seen window-mount birdhouses as well and am seriously considering buying one as it would allow us to watch the birds nesting. How cool would that be?!

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  1. says

    Hi Jean!
    This is such a lovely project! I have a few birdhouses that I’ve had around and I really should get out with Lil’ Miss and paint them. Thank you for sharing.
    I just wanted to mention that mod podge isn’t waterproof and when it rains, the birdhouses might gets kind of sticky and gooey. I thought it was waterproof until one year I made a set of coaster for my Dad and as soon as the drink was set on one, it would get pretty gross and left rings from the condensation.
    Anyway, I just wanted to let you know so your lovely birdhouses don’t get ruined.

  2. rosie says

    looks like a fun project! look for some in my front yard cuz i wanna do this! think i will even make the boxes too! thanks!

  3. says

    Thanks for the tip! I’ll add a coat of acrylic sealer. It rained pretty hard last night and they are fine this morning, but maybe what you are mentioning is something that happens over time?

  4. says

    Oh! This post took my breath away. How I love birds? How I love birdhouses? How I love children painting free and happy? Thank you so much for the beauty and the love,

  5. says

    Love these Jean. We had a birdhouse that Henry decided needed some color and he painted it all blue (even the inside). It is up in a tree but we haven’t seen any birds going in or out. We will have to try again. :)

  6. AP says

    The birdhouses are a great activity. Be sure to put something under the houses to keep animals from taking any eggs that (hopefully) will arrive in your new houses.Our first bluebird house was hung on a fence, and the nest was raided. It’s now on a pole with a baffle, and it has yet to happen again. Good luck with them!

  7. Sarah says

    I really like these!! They look great in your backyard. I would like to do something similar, but am curious as to if these are easy to clean out – I think bird houses need to be cleaned out once a year to get birds to come back to nest?? If so, that is a great price!!

  8. jackie williams says

    That is so creative. I never thought to use paint in that way. But I will try it. The birdhouses will look awesome around our Child Development’s fence. Thanks again.