An alphabet birdhouse by Nishant Jethi. Photo: Courtesy of Nishant Jethi.
Last week we tweeted about an exotic tree house-birdhouse combo at a Japanese nature center. Since we first noticed it, it’s been in headlines everywhere, with coverage in The New York Times, The Huffington Post, even the blog designbloom. It’s easy to see why: The house is pretty cool, nestled in the trees, offering 78 openings for birds and one entryway for a human. With peepholes that open onto the birds’ half, it offers the person an experience that’s half-voyeuristic, half-nature immersion, all intimate look at the feathered flyers.
The chatter about funky birdhouses got us thinking: There have to be others out there—and boy did we find them. Here are three we had to share:
Photo: Courtesy of Nishant Jethi.
3-D Alphabet Bird Boxes
These hip, modern letter boxes by 32-year-old Nishant Jethi are what he calls Living Typography. “I grew up around nature and always had a special place in my heart for birds,” he told us by e-mail. “When I moved to Mumbai, I was both shocked and saddened to realize that sparrows…were gradually reducing in numbers. The few left always seemed remote and almost nonexistent.”
So he set out to build them homes with character, apropos given his design background. He started off sending his 3-D hollow wooden alphabets to family and friends. Then the project expanded, with backing from a design group, an ad agency, and eventually, an NGO that works to get shelter for sparrows.
Now he’s hoping to take the birdhouses global—and they’re available for sale if you want them. For more information, visit Jethi’s blog.
Two of Pattison's bird mansions.
Photos: Courtesy of Jack Pattison.
Jack Pattison, a professional artist from eastern Massachusetts whittles these uh-mazing bird mansions by hand, out of recycled wood “usually recovered furniture pieces rescued from local landfills,” according to his website.
What started off as a gift/surprise for his wife quickly turned into something more, as soon as people saw the detail and beauty of the houses. Plus, it gave Pattison something to do in his retirement. “Every single one is different,” he told the Patriot Ledger newspaper. “Every time I pick up the tools, I have a sense of, ‘What am I going to do now?’”
Pattison will ship the handcrafted boxes anywhere in the U.S. Prices range from $60 to $120. For more information, visit BirdMansion.com.
Neoshed birdhouses. Photo courtesy of Patrick Anderson.
And now for something completely different, these contemporary birdhouses mimic actual buildings created by Neoshed, a company that specializes in “modern design green products.” The four stylish abodes each come made-to-order depending on the preferred bird species. And apparently they’re easy to clean, too—always a bonus.
Not that these are birdhouses, but we had to point out Neoshed’s feeders as well because, let’s face it, they’re just funky. What bird wouldn’t want to dine with a view like these bad boys offer? Again, they’re based on actual outdoor rooms designed by Neoshed, and they’re made from heat-treated poplar “so they last and require no finishes.”
For more information, visit Neoshed’s website. The birdhouses cost $75-$100; the feeders run $125 each.