How to Make a Holiday Folk Art Birdhouse

Kriste Hennick decorates her folk art birdhouses to reflect the holidays.



6", 8", 12" wide fence boards
finishing nails
wood glue
white, green and red spray paint
craft picket fence
mini birdhouse from craft store
glass knobs and small door
fleur-de-lis finial
small Christmas wreaths
table saw
miter saw
nail gun
drill press and drill bits, 1-1/2" hole maker
safety glasses
tape measure
black permanent marker
1/8" wood dowel
white paint and paintbrush



1. Using a tape measure and pencil, measure and mark two 6" x 17" fence boards for the large house and two 6" x 12" fence boards for the small house. Wear safety glasses and cut the boards with a table saw.


2. Using a miter saw, cut the top of all four boards at a 25-degree angle on each side to form a peak.


3. Select one large and one small peaked board for the front of each house and drill a 1-1/2-inch hole in each front approximately 4-inches from the top peak. Router the holes and router the front edges only of each house front.


4. Cut two sides for each house the measurement of the bottom to the roofline—a total of four boards. Glue and nail each house together.


5. Nail the small house to one side of the large house.


6. With both houses connected, paint the house with red spray paint. Let dry.

7. To build the two roofs, cut two 8" x 11" fence boards and two 8" x 10-1/2" fence boards.


8. Cut the tops of all four pieces at a 45-degree angle on the table saw. Glue and nail the roof boards together at the peaks. Router the roof board edges. Paint the roofs with white spray paint. Let dry.


9. Glue and nail the roofs to both portions of the house.

10. To make the base or bottom, cut a 12" x 15" board and router the edges.

11. Paint the bottom with green spray paint. Let dry.


12. Attach the birdhouses to the base (bottom) using glue and nails.


13. Dry brush the house lightly with white paint.


14. Nail the picket fence onto the birdhouse.


15. Paint the door white and nail it onto the birdhouse.


16. Nail the steps made from small pieces of wood and painted white.


17. Attach the mini birdhouse to a small wood dowel and nail the mini birdhouse onto the large birdhouse.


18. Glue patches of moss to the roof boards for trim. Drill holes below the 1-1/2-inch holes to screw glass knobs for the perches. Tie a raffia bow around the knobs.


19. Cut two small pieces of wood for a sign—one for the post and one for the sign and paint white. Write the words "Happy Holidays" in black marker on the sign. Nail the sign to the post. Nail the post to the roof of the large house.


20. Make a small chimney from a scrap of wood, paint it white and nail it to the top of the large birdhouse roof. Glue the fleur-de-lis finial to the top of the chimney.

21. Glue small Christmas wreaths onto the front door and the mini birdhouse.


22. Sand the folk art birdhouse slightly to give it a shabby-chic, rustic texture.

Holiday Folk Art Birdhouse by Kriste Hennick

Kriste Hennick of Orcutt, Calif., never intended to make birdhouses for a living, but she did intend to find a way to stay at home with her kids. When she had some spare time, she built her first birdhouse just for fun, and then hung it on the front porch. To her amazement, just a few days later, a man knocked on her door asking to buy it. Today, she sells her birdhouses in local shops, and transforms them into festive versions for holidays.


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