Butter-Fly House

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Project by toyguy posted 07-10-2008 05:32 PM 2043 views 3 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A couple of months back while walking through a local craft store, my wife pointed out a Butter-Fly House and commented that “we should own one”. Being a true lumberjock, one look at the price-tag and I replied, “I’ll build you one”. As most of you here know, when you make a statement of this nature, it will almost always come back to haunt you.

This project Butter-Fly House is made of left over material from around the shop and home. My dear wife brought home the old milk jug a few years back and has been in various corners of the shed ever since. The main structure is made of some MDF that has been in the shop looking for a place to be useful. The only material purchased was some white spray paint and a couple of fake butterflies at the dollar store.

As this project has been made of recycled material, I figured it was a good candidate for this summers “One Man’s Junk” challenge.

This project has made the wife happy, so of course I am now happy. After all, a happy wife is a happy life; Right? Now if the thing would just attract some butter-flies …….

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

15 comments so far

View Callum Kendall's profile

Callum Kendall

1918 posts in 3669 days

#1 posted 07-10-2008 05:50 PM

Great job!

Thanks for the post


-- For wood working podcasts with a twist check out

View blackdogwoodshop's profile


72 posts in 3694 days

#2 posted 07-10-2008 05:53 PM

Do the butterflies actually get inside?

-- Daniel, Southern Indiana -- "Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful." --

View lew's profile


12018 posts in 3721 days

#3 posted 07-10-2008 06:49 PM

Nice reuse of “stuff”.

I, too, was wondering if butterflies actually use these houses?


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 3663 days

#4 posted 07-10-2008 07:32 PM

I like that ,I love butterflies but how do you attract them

View brunob's profile


2277 posts in 4135 days

#5 posted 07-10-2008 08:09 PM

I’ve had mine up a couple of months so far. No butterflys yet that I’ve noticed.

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View Alan's profile


19 posts in 3666 days

#6 posted 07-10-2008 10:20 PM

Good use of leftovers and a wife-created excuse to get into the shop.

View Garyb6's profile


306 posts in 3596 days

#7 posted 07-10-2008 10:59 PM

Nice looking butterfly house, but won’t the MDF start coming apart in the weather?

-- Garyb6, “True simplicity does not reveal the tremendous effort it requires.” - Somerset Maugham

View trifern's profile


8135 posts in 3733 days

#8 posted 07-10-2008 11:13 PM

Neat project. My family is partial to butterflies also. We plant various host plants to sacrifice for the larvae. My daughter collects the caterpillars, places them in her butterfly tent, watches them spin cocoons, hatch and then releases them. Mother natures is amazing. Thanks for sharing.

-- My favorite piece is my last one, my best piece is my next one.

View Kipster's profile


1076 posts in 3719 days

#9 posted 07-11-2008 12:24 AM

I always wondered what a butterfly house looked like.

-- Kip Northern Illinois ( If you don't know where your goin any road will take you there) George Harrison

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3740 days

#10 posted 07-11-2008 03:57 AM

Very nice butterfly house. Need some info : Size of house and holes? What is in the inside? Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Miki's profile


56 posts in 3574 days

#11 posted 07-11-2008 04:13 AM

does any butter-fly come to your house now? u are a good husband. hehe

-- Everything is possible!

View toyguy's profile


1645 posts in 3803 days

#12 posted 07-11-2008 11:50 AM

Some answers

At this point in time I have seen no butterfly at the house.The house is about 24” tall, 8” wide and 4” deep. The slots are 1/2” wide and about 3” in length. To attract butterflies, I am told you should plant some species of flowers that butterflies like. (your local nursery would be able to help with this). Or ask at the sister site, Garden Tenders, I’ll bet someone there will know.
Yes the butterflies will go in the house, entering through the slots cut in the front. Inside the house (picture 3) you will see the back opens to place a couple of large pieces of bark. This is so the butterflies have a place to get a foot-hold. Once in the house hopefully they will nest and reproduce…. That’s the theory anyway.

As for the use of MDF. Yes this is not probably the best choice of material. But once painted I don’t think the weather will be too much of a factor. It will be put away in the shed during the winter. If I get a couple of years out of it then that will be just fine with me.

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3788 days

#13 posted 07-12-2008 11:52 AM

This is a nice project and a nice re-purposing of material.

Well done.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4265 days

#14 posted 07-12-2008 10:26 PM

If I was a Butterfly, I think I’d try it out.<;o)

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Grumpy's profile


23841 posts in 3817 days

#15 posted 08-05-2008 01:19 AM

Great job Toyguy. Good luck in the contest.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

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