Mini Colander DIY Bird Feeder

These colorful mini colanders are easy to turn into a DIY bird feeder for smaller backyard birds.

While shopping at my local Big Lots a few weeks ago, I came across these small colorful mini colanders for $4 each in the kitchen section. I’ve never been much of a cook, so my first thought was, “These would make great bird feeders!” This DIY bird feeder project was easy and fast, and I was attracting Northern Cardinals within 30 minutes of hanging the new feeder outside.

DIY Bird FeederJill Staake
Jill Staake Total costs of the three-tier feeder: about $10

Mini Colander DIY Bird Feeder Supplies

  • 3 mini colanders, colors of your choice
  • Plastic lanyard laces, colors of your choice
  • 44 plastic beads, colors of your choice
  • Scissors


  • Cut four lengths of plastic lace, in color(s) of your choice, about 36 inches. Knot laces at top end and pull firmly. Make another knot about 2 inches from the first for a hanging loop.
  • Thread one bead onto each lace and seat it close to the second knot. Tie a knot beneath each bead to hold it in place.

Mini colander DIY Bird Feeder

  • Add a second bead about 6 inches down each lace, and knot beneath to hold it in place.
  • At this point, it becomes easier to work if you can hang your laces from a hook in front of you. Attach the first (top) colander by wrapping each lace around one side of the handle twice. Tie the knots loosely at first so you can level out the colander, then knot firmly around the outside edge of the handle.
  • Add a bead to each lace and seat it directly beneath the knot on the handle. Tie a knot beneath to hold it in place.

DIY Bird Feeder

  • Repeat with remaining colanders.
  • Tie remaining laces beneath the last colander as shown. Add four beads to each lace and knot beneath. Trim excess laces.

Mini Colander DIY Bird Feeder

TIP: If you don’t want to build a tiered feeder, create single mini-colander feeders instead.

Mini Colander DIY Bird FeederJill Staake
Jill Staake Single or tiered – it’s up to you!

This project is easy to personalize with colors and bead choices. The holes in the colanders allow rainwater to drain from seed, keeping it fresh, and whole feeder can be washed in warm water (hot water may cause laces to melt, so be careful). Fill with sunflower, safflower, or a seed mix. These would also be ideal for mealworms.

Mini Colander DIY Bird FeederJill Staake
Northern Cardinals visited my DIY bird feeder almost immediately!

Have you made a new DIY bird feeder lately? Drop by the “Look What I Made” forum on our Community to share!

Jill Staake
Jill lives in Tampa, Florida, and writes about gardening, butterflies, outdoor projects and birding. When she's not gardening, you'll find her reading, traveling and happily digging her toes into the sand on the beach.