You can take creative liberties with how you arrange your design, but the two must haves are a stable base (I opted for a bowl) and a large platter for the top.  I chose several items at Goodwill, placed them in my cart, then moved over to a table to experiment and see what would work.  Once I had an idea, I still purchased a few extra items (at 49 cents each, why not?) just in case my design changed.
Here’s how I made my Mad Hatter inspired tea pot bird bath:
Work on a flat surface (I sat on the floor!). Turn the bowl upside down.  Put glue on the lip of a cup, and place it upset down on the bowl.  Make sure it is level.

Continue building up, gluing saucers, cups, tea pots, etc. one at a time.  If you are unsure of yourself, use a level to make sure your structure isn’t leaning.

Once the glue has dried, it’s time to paint.  I didn’t want spray paint the surface the birds would touch.  For one, it’s probably not safe for them, and secondly, they paint would probably flake off.  So I left the top unpainted.

To do so, I set the structure upside down on a box.  I primed it and then spray painted it.  I used Krylon’s Celery paint.  I usually like brighter colors, but this pretty hue seemed appropriate for this project.

I love the end result!  Having it all one color makes the piece more cohesive, don’t you think?

It looks great with my tea cup bird feeder.

Make a tea pot bird bath by using thrifted items from Goodwill. This whimsical piece of garden art is surprisingly easy to make.

Looking for more home decor crafts you can make from Goodwill?  Click here.

Thanks to Goodwill San Antonio for sponsoring this post.  I love being affiliated with an organization that does so much for the community! 


  1. Wow, This is so wicked coolio!!! I have been waiting and wanting a project for my front rock garden and your share has got to be just the one! I love everything you chose to do with it from the shapes down to the celery color! I had no idea you could spray paint dishes! Whoo hoo! Thank you so much for taking the time to share with story and pictures! I love our Goodwill store too and showed them my love at their half off all donated items on July 4th!! Christine

  2. I LOVE this, I have to make it! Thank you for sharing and I love that you shared the photo’s too! I was thinking it could, also, be a tall plant stand…and…….. 8)

  3. Adorable! And Fabucrafter…. thats an awesome word! Love it! Thank you for sharing on CSI Project “Thrift Store Turnaround”!


  4. That is a perfect solution for your mother’s garden and looks wonderful, too. Another thing I’ve seen used is those big old-fashioned standing ash trays, since smoking isn’t as common as it used to be. I’ve been on the lookout for one myself.

    • I have passed up so many of those ash stands, wonder what I would do with them! Now I know! Thanks for the tip!

  5. Love this idea! Thank you so much for sharing it. I am going to paint mine white to match the garden bunnies through the yard. What kind of primer will work here?

    Thank you.

  6. I have made a ton of these, they are so much fun to make. I pick my dishes up at yard sales, flea markets etc. so much cheaper then Goodwill (who are so overpriced). From experience I have learn that you need to use a very heavy dish on the bottom for stability. I find heavy pie plates, or even better the glass plate that goes in the bottom of a microwave ( every charity shop has them)
    works best. I use a lot of decorative wine glasses (ever yard sale has them) , candy dishes anything with color or clear engraving gives that extra sparkle. I did one in all crystal and it turned out beautifully and the sun reflecting off it was lovely. However being the klutz I am I tripped over it while in storage in my garage and destroyed…………………:(

  7. I love this idea and I think it would also be useful for someone that smokes …( NOT ME ) but I do have friends that smoke and I think they would love to have this on their front porch where they go out to smoke ….really a sweet piece you made here …now I will be on the lookout for some old cups / saucers / and teapots …LOVE IT !!!!

  8. I need to make one for my birds! I like the idea someone said about putting concrete in the vessels to make it more sturdy. The animals in my area tipped over my last birdbath and shattered it! Argh!!

  9. Absolutely love the whimsy of this project and the color, so lovely. I also thought it was a matched set. This would go perfectly with the the terra-cotta Cheshire Cat I painted. Did you mention what glue you used?

  10. Hi there. Delighted by the whimsy of this!
    I have a few questions about this….
    1. what did you use as a “primer”?
    2. what type of spray paint did you use?

    Looking forward to trying this when we can get out & about again.
    Hope you are all well & finding lovely ways to get through this “storm”…

    Thanks in advance!

    • Thanks for stopping by and I’m glad you enjoyed this project! On this one I used an Adhesion Promoter that is made for cars, but since then I have used the cheap $1 white spray paint from Walmart. It hasn’t let me down yet and it’s such a cheap alternative. The only downside is the nozzle/sprayer is cheap and my index finger is always sore after using it. 😂 I use a variety of spray paints but most of the time use Rustoleom’s Universal Spray Paint. That one is made for slick surfaces like glass and metal. I hope that helps!


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