How To Make Milk Jug Bird Houses

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We recently made some fond memories with our grandchildren by making milk jug birdhouses after breakfast. It’s a fairly simple project using what you have on hand.

Milk Jug Bird Houses hanging in a tree

Making Milk Jug Bird Houses is a great way to teach the kids to repurpose as well as to provide for God’s creatures. Birding is a fun thing to do all through life.

I have such fond memories of breakfast at my grandparent’s home as a child. We enjoyed hanging out in the kitchen with Papa while he was cooking. I like to create those same types of fond memories for my grandchildren too. We recently had the most fun making birdhouses from plastic milk jugs right after breakfast.

Our grandchildren are growing up in a technological era and that is fine but we enjoy spending time with them and putting the devices away from time to time. So we took a Saturday morning together and made Milk Jug Bird Houses. It’s a great kid-friendly DIY project for any time of the year.

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I packed a bag with lots of crafting supply options and we headed out for the drive to spend the day with our grandchildren. My intention was to let them each be creative by allowing them to choose whatever decorating supplies they wanted.

Our Supplies

  • Clean empty plastic milk jugs
  • Packaged moss (Dollar Tree)
  • Colored craft sticks (Dollar Tree)
  • Crafting spoons (Walmart DIY section)
  • Paint in lots of color choices
  • Fabric Scraps
  • Silk fall leaves
  • Wooden curtain rings
  • Fabric scraps
  • Sisal rope
  • Milk jug caps & 20 oz. plastic bottle caps
  • Wooden skewers
  • Acrylic craft paint in a variety of colors
  • Peel off letter stencils
  • E6000 glue
  • Outdoor Mod Podge
  • Clothesline rope was used to hang the milk jug birdhouses in the tree

How To Make Milk Jug Bird Houses

Use whatever you have on hand to decorate the outside of the birdhouses. No need for spending big bucks on this repurposing project. It’s about allowing the kiddos to be creative. Each plastic birdhouse will reflect the creativity of each child.

Step 1

Begin with clean, dry milk jugs. These can be prepared days in advance of the actual birdhouse making event.

Step 2

Layout all of the supplies you have on hand to use for decorating the milk jug birdhouses. Allow the children to create their own designs.

You only need to supervise the use of paint or cutting tools. I do not recommend the use of hot glue on the project. Simple Elmer’s glue should work just fine.

We just piled a collection of supplies from my craft stash on the table for the children to look at and think about while they were enjoying their breakfast. By the time they were done eating, they all knew which supplies they wanted to use.

It was fun to have breakfast and conversation which seems to be a dying family tradition. But it was great to share that time with the grandchildren.


Step 3 Making the bird houses

First cut a hole for the birds to enter. We used a box cutter but a pair of scissors will work too. Papa and I did all of the cutting, safety first you know!

Step 4 Decorate the outside

We gave the children creative carte blanche. That’s the part we enjoy watching the most.

Our three youngest grandchildren were  7, 10, and 11 when they made these plastic milk jug birdhouses for their yard. They are always fun to do craft projects with. It’s such a nice way to stroke their creativity and enjoy quality time together. 


Two of our Grands opted to use peel off stencil letters. One decided to spell B-i-r-d which we thought was cute since she is only 7. She also decided it would be best to put the cap back on her bird house so the rain wouldn’t get inside.

The very first thing she did was glue moss around the top to attract the birds. Both of the boys decided to do the same thing. We used Outdoor Mod Podge for that step.


Our granddaughter also thought the birds might like to have a perch on the outside of their house so she attached plenty of craft spoons.

She also elected to use the faux fall leaves as a bed for the birds on the inside of her bird house creation.

A wood curtain ring serves as a perch at the door and she painted the handle blue. 


Water Source & A Perch

Both of the boys decided to use the empty fruit cups from breakfast cups as a water source on the outside of their birdhouse. It was glued onto the handle with E6000 glue which is pretty strong.

I cut a very small slit into the handle for the lip of the cup to slide into so the side would fit flush. Chandler also used the E6000 to randomly glue the craft sticks on the outside.

He also used a wood skewer slid through the handle as a perch for the birds.


Inspiration from Angry Birds for some drawings on the outside of the plastic jug.


Angry Birds theme

Angry Birds is the theme for Chandler’s milk jug bird house. He painted the designs on the outside free hand. He is pretty good at all video games including Angry Birds but he enjoys our crafting projects too.



Cullen decided to use the stick on stencils too. It was the next thing he did after attaching the empty cup on the handle. He didn’t want to spell the same word as Ashley so he went with ‘Birdy.’



I knew those wood curtain rings would be fun to use. Cullen added a wood ring to the inside of his milk jug bird house as a perch.

To attach it, we created a small hole on both sides for a wooden skewer.  Then slid the skewer in one side, added the curtain ring by reaching inside the door (those tiny hands fit)  and slid the skewer on through the other side. To keep the ring from sliding around on the skewer, we dropped a dab of E6000 on it.


The wood skewer which holds the curtain ring also serves as a perch. I love the faux fall leaves he glued to the outside too. Cullen used the faux moss on the inside of his birdhouse to create a bed.

Craft Paint Tip

I use milk jug caps and old liquid medicine cups to pour craft paint into. They are the perfect size for the small amount of paint needed. There is always a steady supply of milk caps to choose from.


 Milk jug bird houses make a nice craft project. You get to repurpose empty milk jugs, provide for the birds, spend quality time with the children as well as teach them about giving back and encourage their imaginations. It’s more than a win-win.

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  1. Shirley, This post made me smile! What a fun project to have the kids do! Their milk jug bird houses are adorable! Pinned. Thanks so much for stopping by and for sharing with us at Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Link party!

  2. Super fun idea for crafting with kids. It’s always so fun to watch the birds and listen to them singing. We love to sit on our swing and eat breakfast and do just that. those Fruit & Veggie Fusions look tasty–great for a school snack too!

    Life With Lorelai

  3. OMG my kids would love this. Last year my daughter built a birdhouse but it was rather small. Using a milk jug is an even better idea. Angry Bird, Bird House for the win. lol

  4. What a neat idea! Just yesterday, I looked at a jug and wondered if I should hold on to it to make something. Inspiration didn’t really hit me, so into the recycling it went. But, I bet I can get Monkey Boy to help make one today! Plus, we all like seeing the birds flit around our backyard, especially during dinner, so this would be nice if we can “catch” them, too! 🙂

  5. What a great way to reuse something that might otherwise be thrown away. I love the creativity in decorating the bird houses too.

    1. I know, right! Imagine how many empty milk jugs there are in a house with 5 children like my grandchildren’s home! I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t make a few more.

  6. These milk jugs bird houses are absolutely adorable! I love how you decorated them for fall. We have so many birds in our backyard that come by to eat here in Florida. I am not very crafty but I think this is a project I can handle. Thank you so much for sharing this cute project.

  7. These have to be the cutest birdhouses ever! What a fun project to do with the grandkids. I’ve got to use your tutorial and make these with my own grands. I love the leaves and the moss. You’re going to have some happy birds in your yard.

    1. The moss was probably the most popular thing next to the paint. It was really so fun to watch them being creative. Now they are watching for birds. We had a great time with this craft project. I know you will too with your grandsons.

We enjoying hearing from you!