Outdoor Orbs Part II.
How to Make a Birdfeeder From Glass Shades

Remember my Glowing Outdoor Orbs?  Of course you do.  They’re orbs and they glow.  Like alien testicles. Who could forget something like that.

Well I’ve come up with the Glowing Outdoor Orbs Part II.  Only the don’t glow.  So they’re the Outdoor Orbs Part II.  Only people tend not to know what an Outdoor Orb is (since I made the phrase up), so I’ve decided to change the name to White Glass Shades that Every House Used to Have But Now Doesn’t Because We all Threw Them Out Like Idiots.  And Now We Have to Buy Them From Secondhand Stores.   How’s that?

Anyhooooo back to the issue at hand.  I’m a genius and as soon as you copy what I have to show you below, you’ll feel like a genius too.  Please note, with regard to my geniusyness, it doesn’t apply to math or mathematical related problems, or numbers or decimals or anything that requires the adding or subtracting of fractions.  Or math.

The ingredients for this craft are similar to but different from those in the original Glowing Outdoor Orbs.  You still only need 2 things and it’s still incredibly easy.  I have come to understand that people LOVE the bigger projects I do, but tend to only duplicate the ones that take 10 minutes or so.  Don’t blame ya.

Here for your pleasure and limited time frame, is the 10 minute birdfeeder.


A old glass lampshade



A squiggle of rope …



A $3 contemporary hanging birdfeeder.


How to make a super-fantastic hanging birdfeeder


Gather your rope.  I happened to use 1/8th inch nylon rope.  I bought a 50′ package and it cost around $4.  There’s enough rope in that package to hang 3 or 4 birdfeeders from really high branches.

Using really thick rope would also look great.  Probably even better than the thin stuff.   I’m not sure why I bought the thinner stuff.  I’m sensing a crack in my geniusyness.


#1.  Measure twice the amount of rope as you need it to hang.   Go look at your tree branch and just guess.  When all else fails, just measure out a lot.  You can always make the rope shorter, but you can’t make it longer.  Find the middle of the rope.


#2.  Wrap the doubled up rope around the middle of your glass shade.  The looped area of the rope is the centre of it.

#3.  Pinch where the loop (centre) meets.



#4.  Tie a knot where your pinch mark is.


#5.  You now have a knot and a loop and a whole whack of excess rope.



#6.  Wrap the rope around the shade again.

#7.  Slip the excess rope through the loop, allowing the loop to rest over and lock on the knot.  You’ll probably have to undo and redo your knot to get it right.  You want it quite tight but not so tight you’ll break the shade.  Good and tight is how I would describe it.


#8.  Place a soft towel or pillow under the shade, then lift it by the rope to make sure it’s hanging straight. Fiddle with centreing the rope until it hangs right.  The towel’s there in case the shades slips out and falls.  It shouldn’t but it might. Hell, what do I know about your knot tying abilities?




#9.  Using Waterproof Silicone, glue your rope to the shade.


#10.  To make sure your rope stays centred on the shade, just run the tip of the silicone down the centre of the 2 pieces of rope.  As you run the tip down, it’ll push the two pieces aside keeping everything centred.  Go allll the way around the shade.



#11.  Pinch the rope closed again, along the glue line.


If you want to be extra diligent (I was) you can also run a bead of silicone on the outside edges of the rope.

Hey!  Wanna know why I was extra diligent??  Because the first time I did this I wasn’t and 2 of my feeders crashed to the ground and shattered into pieces.  See?  Like this.


I oringally only used “Weldbond” glue, which is supposed to adhere to glass.  Guess what?   It didn’t.  So don’t go thinking you can do this with whatever glue you have around the house.  You can’t.  You must use a silicone based product like I’ve used.  Marine silicone, tub silicone … anything like that.  Something that’s meant for use on glass and is meant to come into contact with water.  Weldbond says it does these things.  But in my experience ….

… it doesn’t.


#13.  Let the birdfeeder rest for 24 hours to dry.  Unless you’re me. In which case, run outside and hang it from the tree immediately.  Do as I say, not as I do.  You want the glue to cure before subjecting it to the elements.


Hang them & fill them with bird/chipmunk/squirrel food!


You may have noticed that there are  no pictures of birds at my birdfeeders.  That’s because I didn’t have an extra 742 hours to sit around waiting for a bird to come.  Besides it’s been raining since I hung these feeders and I haven’t seen a bird at them yet.  I’m sure they’ll come.  They always do.

Also a bit of a warning here!   I have no idea if one day the  silicone will suddenly decide it’s had enough of this and give up.  It shouldn’t. But it might.  But it really, really shouldn’t.  However, I’m warning you that I cannot take responsibility if these glass shades come crashing down onto your Golden Retriever or French Bulldog’s head.  I don’t think they will but I thought it’d be rude not to mention it’s a possibility.

Although, on account of my mathematical abilities, I wouldn’t want to put a percentage on it.  Or a fraction..



  1. Angela N says:

    Love this!! I will be making this soon! I have one of the orb lights in my garage right now. Woo hoo! Thanks for the idea!

  2. Mr. Pickles says:

    Mr. Pickles says, “Brava!” Plus, the more birds I can lure the garden, the better! This the home-improvement project equivalent of the Gary Larson cartoon with the dog pointing to an open clothes dryer that reads, in crazy-person scrawl, “Cat Fud” as the cat looks at the dog suspiciously.

  3. Michele says:

    Even more geniusy than I expected (and i have come to expect a lot from you). I think it literally took my breath away when I scrolled down to the picture. Can’t wait to do this.

  4. Jeanne says:

    Karen: Absolutely brilliant! Another winner.

    (what is happening with the C.Coop?) hummmmm
    Diversion, procrastination, just plain wore out?

    • Karen says:

      No, I’m still working on the coop, but I can’t do it 14 hours a day anymore. The rest of the house was falling apart. You should see the laundry that needs to be done. And I still hadn’t “spring cleaned” my front yard and porch. So I’m trying to work a few other things in and slow down on the coop for a few days. It should still be done in a week or so! ~ karen

  5. Hailey Marie says:

    Those are so cute! My only worry is that the wind will come along and blow them into something… or each other!

    • Karen says:

      Hailey – As long as you space them at different heights they shouldn’t blow into each other. And if they’re far enough away from the trunk, same thing. Also, they’re fairly heavy once you get the seed in them. In fact, with the larger feeders don’t fill the feeder up, just enough so the birds can reach it from the lip. Otherwise it’ll be really heavy. ~ karen

  6. Rebecca Mueller says:

    Hi Karen,
    Love all you do. Thanks for your wit. About the birdfeeders, I have one question. How do the squirrels like them? I have given up on bird feeding because it inevitably attracts every squirrel in the neighborhood. When they are finished with the bird seed, they test my tomatoes with one bite before tossing them to the ground. Oops, two questions. Why do squirrels do that?


    • Karen says:

      Rebecca – Squirrels are jerks. But I still think they’re cute. I’ve see them stalking the feeders, but not actually in them. I *have* seen my chipmunk doing a lot of rummaging though! ~ karen

  7. CJ says:

    Have to say,

    Someone definitely has her funny back!!!

  8. Mandy says:

    My first thought when I saw that rope around the orb was “Uh-oh, that miiight not work” Haha I’d probably be too scared that an over-eager squirrel would knock it out! I love the look though, and they’d probably be beautiful with votive candles inside too! I’m wishing I had gorgeous trees like yours!

  9. Jules says:

    Karen- you do it yet again – make me laugh and give me a mission. Love the idea! I may paint mine – that will work right? On the hunt for more orbs!!
    Good call on the 10 min projects – I’m sure you are right- human nature I guess and just the joy of almost instant gratification;) (and no math – which I thank u for because i suck at it too)

    Thanks as always!

  10. Cheryl says:

    Love this!! Do you think this would work with a Dollarama candy dish? https://www.theartofdoingstuff.com/10-uses-for-a-dollarama-candy-dish-2
    I’m thinking that if the bird feeder gets a lot of bird poop on it, it wouldn’t be as apparent with a clear glass.

    • Karen says:

      Cheryl – I think because they’re clear the dollarama candy dishes might be even messier looking because they are see through. They won’t have the same impact unless they’re against a very plain background all around. I’m not sure. The only way to find out how it looks is to try! ~ karen

    • NanaBeast says:

      The large size and angle (“tilt” for those of us who are math and geometry challenged) of the opening in the dollarama candy dishes makes me think rain would fill this baby up. Of course some people might like to watch a waterfall of birdseed.

      • Karen says:

        NanaBeast – Oh! Dollarama also sells other candy dishes that aren’t on a tilt. :) ~ karen

  11. gf says:


    A glowing outdoor orb alien testicle bird feeder would be quite romantic for bird/squirrel date night.

  12. Jennifer says:

    Love it! Both orb projects are totally inspired!

  13. I love the look! But I’m wondering if there might be a more secure way to do it… Two loops of rope at 45 degree angles maybe…

    Hang on, I just used degrees and angles. I lost you already, right?

    Keep up the good work.

    • Karen says:

      I looked into doing this a variety of ways. I wanted something as simple and unobtrusive looking as possible. I didn’t want to create a net or cradle that would hold the birdfeeders because it would take away form the “look”. Hah! I said, “the look”. Anyhow, it’s true. The silicone should be reallyyyyyyy secure. Honestly. I mean, they use marine silicone to hold portholes into ships, so it should be fine. :) ~ karen

      • Kelea says:

        I haven’t finished reading all the remarks but I’m wondering if anyone has had issues with rain getting inside?
        We get monsoons and the rain blows every direction sometimes all at once!
        Love the ideas using these and I have some I’ve recently removed and some yet to remove and now I don’t have to include them in my yard sale!

      • Karen says:

        Hi Kelea – I’ve had dampness in mine after hard, whipping around rains, but if I were to do these again, I would just angle them down very, very slightly. I think that’s all it would take to make sure the rain drips off the lip instead of in the feeder. But honestly, it’s only dampness that’s ever been a problem. It’s never been filled with rain or anything. ~ karen!

  14. mimi says:

    Wonderful idea!
    2 things- do your hands not get wrecked from handling glue and stuff?
    -The trees in your back are gorgeous!

    • Karen says:

      Mimi. Yeah. My hands get wrecked all the time. I have a massive cut across my finger that I probably should have had stitched, I have white calking in my thumbnail bed and my nails are never done. My sister gently suggested I might want to consider gel nails the other day. So yeah. My hands get wrecked. But stuff gets done! :) ~ karen

  15. Jen says:

    OK…it’s early…and I’ve just started sipping my coffee….but when I started reading this I was baffled wondering how you were going to CUT out the perfect hole, where the birdfeed went. LOL! I’ll go finish my coffee now….:) I LOVE, love, love, this idea. Especially now that I don’t have to cut anything.

  16. Michelle says:

    You are so freakin amazing and human too, I like the ‘after’ smashed shots!

  17. mel says:

    yesterday i just bought 100m of rope. without any clue what to do with it. and now, there you come! thank you karen.. you are genius. and i have a explanation for the boyfriend when he gives me the what-the-hell-were-you-thinking-buying-that-look.


  18. Cindy S. says:

    You are brilliant! I LOVE these feeders, and I LOVE the outdoor orbs!!
    I hate to admit it, but I still have 3 of these in use—I call ’em polyp lights, and I really despise them, but now I won’t have to throw them away when we finally put up new fixtures!

  19. Emily @ NewlyWife says:

    You make me want to run to a thrift store and hoard all of them there orbs!

  20. Shauna Rudy says:

    Ooooh, I love it love it love it! So pretty! Do you think that if I left it empty, birds would use it as a house? I don’t know a lot about birds’ housing preferences. (I can’t do birdseed because we live across the street from a creek, and seed brings the rats over.) They’re so lovely and chic looking that I want to find another use. Maybe hanging votive holders? Thanks for another brilliant idea.

    • Shelley says:

      I just bought birdseed that is soaked in hot sauce. Only the birds eat it. No squirrels and I bet no rats!

      • Erika says:

        bidsed soaked in hotsauce so no squirrels? Genius! I was just trying to come up with some way to do these without incouraging the three terrorist squirrels in my trees.

    • Pam'a says:

      I think a lot of birds need something with a smaller hole in it to keep out other critters. Wrens, for example, like a quarter-sized hole!

      • Kelli says:

        Each bird uses a preferred size hole. This opening is way too big. If it were that big, anything could get to the eggs or chick’s and eat them. Sorry, but keep thinking, maybe you will figure out something you can use to fill the space to make the opening smaller. I will work on this, and get back to you if I figure it out.
        Kelli ?

    • Shauna Rudy says:

      Thanks for the ideas and info, ladies!

      • Kelli says:

        Ooooooh!!! Don’t spend the extra money for presoaked birdseed…Make your own. Cut up a couple of hot peppers ( that should cost no more than $.30) you can use any old hot pepper, jalapeño, Serrano, or even a handful of chili petines ( they grow wild all over South Texas). Make sure you gave a pair of nitrile or latex exam gloves on for the rest of this. Pour about 4 cups of plain old, cheap wild birdseed into a large glass or metal mixing bowl (if you use plastic, the capsaicin will leech into it, and you will end up with a pepper scented bowl). Once you have poured the seed in, then pick up the diced peppers, and crush them over the seed. After you have squeezed the peppers into mush, go ahead and drop them right into the seeds as well. Now just used your still gloved hands and knead those squished peppers into the seed until you can no longer distinguish them from the seed. Lastly, take your newly peppered seed, pour it into a cookie sheet, and either place it on the counter or outside on a table to dry. After a couple hours… Voila… squirrel-proofed seed!!!

        One time I did the same thing time coyote-proof milk for an orphaned calf (only after locking the calf away). It worked like a charm… at 3 AM I heard a tremendous amount of yelping, and that stinking coyote never came back! Only one problem with this was that I didn’t think to use the exam gloves. I did not wash all of the oils off, and I absent mindedly rubbed my eye. It stung like all get out!! Also, I ended up with second degree contact burns on both hands. I couldn’t do anything (and I do mean Anything) for a solid week afterwards! Just think about it for a few seconds and let that sink in, LMBO!!! Turns out I am allergic to Chili Petines!!!! But hey, it worked like a charm!!!

  21. Mary says:

    Damn, that’s so brilliant.

    • Karen says:

      Yes. But ask me to calculate how much to tip at a restaurant. ~ karen

      • Michelle says:

        there’s an app for that!
        these are so cute and you are so funny! thanks, i needed some laughter on a friday morning!

      • Karen says:

        No problem Michelle! It’s kind of dreary here so I could use a laugh too. If you know a good knock knock joke, send it along. :) ~ karen

  22. Pati says:

    awesome Karen!! Love them :)

  23. Amy says:

    Very geniusy, though I can tell your “geniusyness” doesn’t apply to math or mathematical related problems because this project does in fact require 3 items instead of 2 like you said in the beginning of your post. :) Love it anyway.

    • Karen says:

      Amy – LOL. You must be a new visitor. You’ll soon find out. I lie alllll the time. I usually point it out myself, but you beat me to it! Good job. :) ~ karen

      • Amy says:

        Actually I’m a long time stalker, but a first time commenter. You never fail to crack me up. Pretty much every day I drag my husband over to the computer to see your new post. :)

      • Karen says:

        Thanks Amy! I bet your husband just *loves* that, LOL. ~ karen

    • dee says:

      And who’s really counting? Unless you’re a (excuse me) boring math or OCD person. Other then that who cares if it’s 2 or if it’s 3. I got it and I’m certainly not math inclined or OCD. I just like reading these posts.

    • Bethany Cunningham says:

      But it DOES require 3 items!
      1.) Glass Globe
      2.) Roping/Twine
      3.) The water-proof glue
      ….and you could even say 4 items!…
      4.) bird seed….DUH! :)

      Just wondering if rain would fill the globe and the bird seed would spoil?? Hmmmm….

      • Karen says:

        Hi Bethany, rain doesn’t fill the globe, but it can get wet in the bird feeder if the rain is coming in from a certain direction and get damp. Tilting it down a bit more would help with that. ~ karen!

  24. molly Grove says:

    hey these are great and i love love all the different uses SO GREAT.

  25. Surani says:

    First comment!

    Tee-hee, not really. I mean it is, but I’m not one of THOSE people. You know who I mean.

    This is wonderful! I’ve already been going to Goodwills looking for glass round-y things for the glowing ones and now I need even more.

    Living in a townhouse with a back porch but no backyard I can’t do a lot of outdoorsy stuff, which is why I love Outdoor Orbs Part I and Part II. They work anywhere!

    Keep up the strange and wonderful things.

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