Monday, July 15, 2013

Pine Cone Birds

These are really fun to do with the kids!  

Just collect the pine cones from your yard or go for a walk in a park or down the road in search for them.  

You could probably even hang these outside, although I'm not sure how they would hold up to the weather.  Maybe use outdoor spray paint?  Depending on where you live and where they are hanging I think they would at least last one spring/summer/fall season outside.

These would also be fun to make and put in a handmade nest!  Could be a fun gift for a teacher, grandparent or care provider.

You can't really do this project in one day so plan on it taking some extra time; I found this good because then the kids could take a break and do something else for a while.

-large pine cones
-acrylic paint (glitter paint if desired)
-googly eyes
-orange pipe-cleaners
-assorted medium to large colored feathers
-hot glue and hot glue gun

Optional Materials:

-thin tree branch about 3 feet long
-green paper for leaves


1. Paint pine cones and allow to thoroughly dry.
2. Make beak (two pieces of pipe-cleaner about 2 1/2 inches long, folded in half like a "V") and bird feet using pipe-cleaners. 
See picture below:
3. Use hot glue gun to glue beak onto the "bottom" end of the pine cone.  Glue the feet in between the layers of the pine cone.
4. Very carefully glue on the googly eyes.
5. Choose the wing and tail feathers you will use; begin gluing on the feathers between the pine cone layers where you want them. (Tip: Glue on the largest feathers first, then the smaller feathers can be glued to the larger feathers.)
6. Glue on a string to the top of the bird if you plan to hang it.

If hanging from a branch...

7. Tie your bird or birds to the branch where you want them (I also added a bit of hot glue to the knot to make sure it wouldn't come untied.)
8. Cut some leaf shapes (Optional: I had my son draw the leaves veins on the leaves.)
9. Use hot glue to glue the leaves to the branch.
10. Use a long piece of ribbon tied to both ends of the branch to hang the branch from the ceiling.  (I used a screw-in cup hook to hang this from.)

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