07/22/14, by Megan Steenson
Even birds like taking a swim during the summer, so give them a place to cool off with this birdbath. It looks great set apart on its own or surrounded by a vibrant garden. And you can build it in a day!
The basin of the birdbath is actually a large stainless steel mixing bowl that we purchased online and dressed up with copper tubing and copper wire. It rests on a pedestal, which is built with landscape pavers and a larger concrete paver that’s used as a cap.
Start by preparing the mixing bowl for its decorative copper edging. Place the bowl facedown on a scrap board, lay out marks 1" apart along the rim, and punch holes on and between all the marks (photo 1). Next, bend a piece of copper tubing into a circle to match the circumference of the bowl. Give yourself about 4" extra at the end, and cut the tubing with wire cutters.
You can see how to attach the copper tubing to the bowl with copper wire in photo 2. You’ll want to start near the end of the tubing, and leave a 6" tail of wire to tie off later. Be sure to insert the wire through the smooth side of each hole, so the soft copper won’t catch. Pull the wire taut as you weave it since it needs to hold the tubing in place.
Go three quarters of the way around the bowl, and then stop to cut the tubing to length. When you’ve finished lashing it, twist the ends of the wire together, cut off any excess, and tuck the knot neatly under the rim of the bowl.
Now you’re ready to take the project outside. Make sure the area where you want to set up the birdbath is level, and then lay down landscape pavers to form the base of the pedestal. Build up the rest of the pedestal to your desired height. You can create a random pattern like we did, or build a more formal column. Use a level frequently to make sure the bricks are lined up and lying flat. When you reach the top, add the paver cap and the basin.
Finally, when the birdbath is set up, fill the basin with stones and water. Then wait for your new summer guests to arrive!