Our DIY Chicken Coop may be rustic but it’s been the perfect home for our egg laying ladies! Keep reading to see how we converted our children’s old playhouse into a functional and purposeful feature in our backyard.
I have long romanticized about owning chickens and collecting fresh eggs from my own backyard. But this dream was put off for quite a few years because it seemed that I was always pregnant and nursing (my littles were born so close together!) or we were moving houses again– and at the time the thought of adding one more responsibility just seemed too overwhelming!
Now days, my first two children have grown up into a responsible elementary age and I’m happy to say that early in the Spring of 2022 my chicken dreams finally came true!
It all started with a phone call from my sister who was visiting our local feed & supply store. You see, she has a real soft spot for baby chicks and ducklings and is a whole lot BRAVER than I am when it comes to raising small animals.
During the phone call she informed me that a shipment of baby chicks had arrived and that she was picking up three of them to raise for egg laying. She also encouraged me to purchase a few for myself as apparently chickens are really “no big deal” and the “easiest” small animal you could possibly choose to take care of.
I remember feeling my heartstrings being tugged but I also felt overwhelmed with my seemingly never ending home remodel, so I declined for the time being.
A short week and a half later, however, the dream of having my own backyard poultry had been stirred up in my heart and mind and I couldn’t let go of the idea.
It took some moderate convincing to get my hubby on board but I think he realized (as I did) that there isn’t ever a convenient time to start something new– and once I had gotten the okay from him I found myself at the feed store picking up ten baby chickies!
Despite our best efforts one of our baby chicks died in the first few weeks so currently we have 9 chickens remaining: two Lavender Orpingtons, three Wellsummers and four Saphire Gems. They are now 5 months old and just starting to lay eggs as of a few days ago!
DIY Chicken Coop Inspiration
Baby chicks need to be inside or under a heat lamp for 6-10 weeks before they can self regulate their body temperature well enough to be outside. That gave me plenty of time to do a thorough amount of research on different types of chicken coops.
The two styles I liked the most were:
- mobile chicken coops
- farmhouse inspired permanent shed-like structure chicken coops
During my research I realized that chicken coops can cost very little or be quite expensive. Now, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with going all out on a chicken coop but my hubby and I did not want to invest a whole lot of money at the beginning of our chicken raising careers.
Instead we put our heads together and came up with the cheapest, most aesthetic solution we could think of and converted our children’s playhouse into a chicken coop!
Our kiddos were fast outgrowing the little playhouse anyway so it was the perfect time to upgrade them to a swing-set and repurpose the old play house into an adorable DIY chicken coop.
I would say our chicken coop is mostly jerry-rigged together.
My husband was truly creative reusing whatever scraps we had leftover from our home remodel: old cabinet doors, 2×4’s we had pulled out of interior walls and even some old baby safety locks from our previous home!
He also modified the playhouse windows for nesting boxes and installed 2×4’s across the interior as perches for our hens to roost upon.
Eventually I would like to paint our DIY chicken coop white and add pops of black to give it that true farmhouse vibe but that is a project for another time!
Supplies & Cost for our DIY Chicken Coop
- playhouse- $free
- 1 roll of chicken wire– $50
- 8, 2×4’s– $45
- galvanized staples $6
- extra construction screws $free
- galvanized mesh $20
That brings us to a total of $121
I hope that this post helps get your creative juices flowing to build your own backyard DIY chicken coop. If you have any questions leave me a comment below and I will do my best to get back to you!
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