What a perfect project for these sweet summer days. We've had plenty of butterflies fluttering around, and Kaia was ecstatic to feed them the moment I mentioned "butterfly feeder".
Here's how to make one of your own. Start by finding a small jar with a lid. Cut four sturdy strings at least 4 times the length of your jar. Tie them around the mouth of your jar so that all four are equally spaced and so that each knot has two tails of equal length. (As in, your strings were knotted in the middle and you now have 8 strings to work with.) Turn the jar over, and knot the adjacent strings together midway up the wall of he jar. Repeat this process near the base of the jar.
Gather your strings above the jar, which should be hanging upside down, and wrap the ends with a piece of tape to keep them together and make for easy threading.
Lace a flower onto the top. Brighter colours attract butterflies best. Because we have a stash of fake flowers that was given to us, Kaia picked out one of the larger ones and we pulled it off its stem and removed all the plastic bits. I cut the hole in the center larger, and Kaia threaded it onto the feeder. She then painted a large wooden bead to go on top of the flower.
Unsurprisingly, she wanted to dip it in sparkles. (There are not many things she would not dip in sparkles given the opportunity.) Katalin was especially interested in this step and desperately wanted to "help", looks like I'll have another glitter enthusiast to contend with!
Either drill or punch a hole in the lid with a hammer and nail. Either way, make sure the burr (the jagged, sharp pointy bits,) goes inside the lid so it is safe. Place a cotton ball on the inside of the lid and pull a little piece of it through the hole. We did this by poking the nail we'd just used through it. Fill with butterfly food, and hang it out. Do the butterflies a favour, and do not hang it next to the bird feeder. :)
To make butterfly food, stir one part sugar into 4 parts water and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Let cool, and pour into your feeder. We added a little vegetable based food colouring to the mix as well.
We found this project idea at Mother Rising. (thank you!) We made ours slightly differently, but the gist is the same.