My passion for salvaging things is well known. I'm never happier than when I'm up to my elbows rooting around in boxes of old junk outside a house clearance shop; at a jumble sale or in a charity shop. My absolute favourite purchases are always those that I've unearthed from the bottom of a random box of 10p bits and pieces - a pretty little china teacup who's lost it's saucer, an enamel teapot missing it's lid; a floral plate with a tiny chip on the back that nobody wants anymore.
But what to DO with all this stuff? I want to love it and look at it and keep it from the jaws of the crusher, but let's be honest, my cupboards are groaning under the weight.
So what can you do with these adorable mis-matched odds and sods? Well, of course you can make candles in them, and very lovely they are too. But there's also only so many candles a home can have.
Inspired by the bird feeders I made a while back in vintage clay plant post, I decided to share the prettiness of this kitchenalia with my garden birds. They need all the energy they can get at this time of the year, so a tasty treat of fat and seeds will give them the warmth they need.
I'm not entirely sure how my bone china cup will fare in the depths of winter when the temperature plummets, but the enamel teapot will be just fine I'm sure.
To make, simply melt some solid vegetable fat gently in a pan. Pour dried bird seed mix into your cup or whatever receptacle you're using. Pour over the hot fat and leave to cool and set. Tie some garden twine off the handle to make a hanging loop and you're done.
If you're giving this as a gift (and what a lovely thoughtful gift it would make!), decorate with a ribbon, some berries and foliage from the garden and seal the top with one of those cellophane jam pot covers and an elastic band. Pop into a gift box and voila, a gorgeous vintage gift that's cost pennies and will give hours of enjoyment watching the birds visit the garden.
Are you feeding the birdies this winter?