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3.05.2021

yes, you can make a bird nest!

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bird nests seem to me to be a sign of springtime...

over the years, i've been lucky enough to have found a few real ones, 
incorporating them into my home decor in spring. and fall. and on my Christmas trees!

i've also made quite a few - 
from elaborate to simple, from small seasonal versions sold via an enchanting online boutique
to an enormous one made for a client to hold a precious gold-embellished ostrich egg,

making them always connects me to nature.

this year i've made one with the slightest hits of gray and yellow elements
unearthed in my bins and boxes of saved materials,
and i thought i'd share the easy process of making them with you.

if you're sitting there thinking 'whaaaaa? MAKE a bird nest?!', continue reading!

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this nest is made loosely, to appear more natural than manufactured.
i wanted the materials used to look as if mama bird gathered them up in snippets and bits,
then used them to decorate the home she built.
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materials to gather

tall grasses - mine came from our yard, and in the end i only used one type.
if you can't gather in the wild,
ask local landscapers & gardeners if they'll give you trimmings from other yards!
you can also substitute raffia from the craft store.
the nest i made ended up being @8 inches across, and the grass was about two feet long.
if you want a smaller or larger nest, adjust the length of the grass/raffia you use.


yarn, twine, string, embroidery thread/floss, ribbon, and seam binding
in whatever colors, textures, widths you can salvage
you'll want several of these materials to be longer than the grasses you use,
to help hold the nest together.


scissors

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tutorial

gather up lengths of grasses and lay them in a bunch with the cut ends all on one side.
to that bunch, add the pieces of twine, yarn, string, etc so that they are placed throughout the bunch.

pick up the bunch and hold it in the middle with one hand,
then use your other hand to grasp the cut ends and curl them in toward the grass.
 (if your grass is very dry, go very slowly - or mist the grass with water to make it more pliable)
curl the bunch in as tight a circle as you can for the first two rounds.

continue curling the bunch in a circle - and you're creating a FLAT circle that is growing larger.
(don't try to make a 'nest' shape at this point)

when you reach the end of the bunch, hold it in place on the outside of the circle.

using a piece of twine or string, tie the loose outer end of the bunch to the circle:
insert the twine into the 'hole' in the center of the circle/nest, and wrap it all the way around.
tie tightly.

create a 'nest' shape by pushing gently downward on the inner center coils
while holding the outer edge in place. this creates a depression in the center.
add a bit of string, moss, ribbon, etc to fill in the small hole in the center and make it appear solid.
(i just sit mine in there, but you can glue it in place if you wish)

tuck most of the pieces of grass sticking out around the nest into the bunch.
you can pull some of the yarn, ribbon, etc. out to the edges a bit so it shows up more, if you wish.

the nest is complete - but you can always add embellishments!
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embellishment number one is the addition of some golden yellow glass beads...
they are vintage, from an old broken necklace, and add sparkle to the nest.
they make me think of how magpies gather up sparkly things and put them in their nests!

i slid the beads onto a few blades of the dried grass,
then tucked those into the edges of the nest so they'd rally catch the light and show up.

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embellishment number two is a small snippet of a soft gray satin ribbon,
tucked into the outside edge of the nest.
it twirls and peeks out like mama bird just wove it in there!

embellishment number three is a tiny bouquet of white blossoms -
they're vintage and i've had them for YEARS. they just keep getting tucked into things.
in this case, they help cover the twine that ties the nest together.

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the nest is beautiful on its own, empty. 
but of course it makes a perfect container for other items... decorative eggs being one.

since i'm not quite ready to add Easter eggs to my decor,

i used lemons from our backyard tree as 'stand ins' in the nest - for now!


links to previous related posts:


'spring in a jar' with nest


shared online:

funky junk interiors | diy salvaged junk projects #567


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