Do you remember a They Might Be Giants song, “Make a Little Birdhouse in Your Soul”? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAbZzdalZh4)
I’ve had that song in my head ever since seeing architectural birdhouses by Home Bazaar. These little beauties are rendered either in an architectural style—like a salt box cottage, a pagoda, an arts and crafts bungalow, and oodles of others—or are inspired by real buildings, like the garden pavilion at Monticello or the Hotel Del Coronado. (‘m especially smitten with the Arts and Crafts bungalow, because it looks a lot like my house.) Some people display them inside or on covered porches, protesting that they’re too pretty to use outside — but they are created for outdoor use.
Gramercy Park Birdhouse
The birdhouses and birdfeeders are made out of materials like ply-board, kiln-dried hardwood, and poly-resin for the fine details, using non-toxic, water-based outdoor paint with pine or western red cedar shingles for the roof. Strict birding enthusiast guidelines are used so that birds can nest, multiply and return: the back comes off so the interior can be easily cleaned.
San Francisco Rowhouse Birdhouse
The reason they are made of hardwood is that this makes them cooler inside for the birds, as opposed to birdhouses made of synthetic materials. The also have ventilation and drainage, and can be mounted on a garden pedestal, like a cottage design mounted on a pedestal with Victorian scrollwork.
Because they are made of mostly natural materials, they become weathered. David Silverman, founder of the company, says, “That’s part of the beauty of them. When they start to get old, they age naturally, and birds can live in them for many years.”
Prices range from $25 to upwards of $300. For more information: http://www.hbbirdhouse.com/default.htm