Hosting a gathering of any kind, whether it’s to mark a holiday or a celebration, can be a fun and meaningful way to give thanks to the people in your life. Normally, a tangible way of saying “thank you” to guests, friends, and family members, who all went out of their way just to come to your party and make it extra special, is to hand out party favours. In fact, the gift-giving practice of handing out party favours (for my fellow history buffs out there 😉 ) actually dates back to Victorian England, when rich and influential brides gave small fabric bags of sugar cubes or sweet confectionaries to their guests. While a lot of newlyweds stick to this tradition, parents use this as a way to express their gratitude for making their kids’ party one to remember. While, still others, take it a step further and see this as a chance to showcase their creativity.
Of course, these days, giving out party favours is not limited to weddings. Whether it’s a child’s birthday, a bar mitzvah, Thanksgiving or Christmas, these gatherings are almost always capped off with party favours that come in the form of pint-sized treats, or better yet, specialized, handcrafted tokens.
I’ve got to say, however, not all party favours are created equal. If we’re really being honest with ourselves, there’s a bit of a love-hate relationship with them. Anyone with me on that? I think it’s because most of these trinkets aren’t necessarily practical or useful apart from saying, “thanks for coming to the party.” At the end of it all, it’ll most likely collect dust in a dark corner of the home, or, worse, the bottom of a trash can. So, instead of handing out the usual, commercially produced party favours, why not DIY ones that can double as handy items at home; useful gifts like a sweet and practical bird tray/bird feeder.
Bird trays/feeders come in many shapes and sizes. Some are cylindrical, while others look more like a small gazebo or are actual birdhouses, just like these project ideas featured on Pinterest. Some call them ‘tray feeders,’ others ‘bird tables.’ But one thing is clear: the success of a bird feeder is based on its placement in your yard as well as the type of food it has in it.
And, of course, craftsmanship is key. If you’ve never made a bird feeder this tutorial will help get you started. Here are the basics for creating a fun, thoughtful and, above all, functioning DIY bird feeder that doubles as a party favour.
First, let’s cover the basics.
Step 1: Gather Recyclable Materials
Gather recyclable materials such as plastic bottles, wooden dowels, and twine that act as the main base of the project. For more natural decorative items, you’ll need twigs, bark, and dried leaves. Make sure to have a utility knife, a heavy adhesive, and electric drill (you know how much I now love power tools 😉 ), which Screwfix defines as a versatile implement that works for every need. (If you’re working with kids on this do-it-yourself project, be sure to put safety measures in place, especially since you’ll be handling a power tool.)
Step 2: Start Assembling
To start, make sure all plastic bottles are clean. Once you’ve got this sorted out, then it’s time to drill two sets of holes, an inch or two above the other, on the opposite sides near the base. Ensure the wooden dowels can fit perfectly in the bottom set, as these will serve as a perch. (If you’d like, drill two more pairs of holes mid-way between the two pairs you’ve already drilled and add dowels, thus creating 4 pairs of holes all around your base with 4 dowels inserted into the lower set of holes.)
For the top set of openings, use the utility knife to widen them so they’ll be easy for birds to get their food. (Feel free to insert a plastic funnel into these openings, as pictured below).
The remaining materials you’ve collected, including the twigs, bark, and dried leaves are all decorative so feel free to be as creative as you want. Don’t forget to include the kiddos! Your kids can help you personalize the bird feeder and make it a fun family activity. Finish off this simple DIY party favour by tying a piece of twine around the bottleneck.
This project is perfect for beginners and can be done with simple, readily available materials. You can produce 40 to 60 pieces – depending on how many guests you have – in no time. It’s also a great way to bond with your kids and involve them in the actual process of planning the party.
Hope you give this simple and creative DIY a try!
~The preceding was a collaborative post~