The Lexington Herald-Leader article on The Arboretum's birdhouse event is:
Step 1: The Plan
The materials you'll need:
1. The lumber needed depends on the size of the birdhouse. Because the entrance holes (it's actually a 4-family birdhouse) are literally the holes in the letters "b " and "d ," the letter size is tied to the type of bird you want to nest within. In any case, we were able to build everything from scraps I had in my shop, and that might work for you too....
2. A durable finish is needed. We used exterior-grade latex paints for the white and black. The red, yellow, green, and blue colors were actually interior latex wall paint samplers... less than $2 each. I don't really trust any paint to last outside, so the plan all along was to seal everything with 2-3 coats of high-quality clear polyurethane, and that's what we did. You could really use just about any paint as long as you seal it that way.
3. You'll also need a few bolts and screws and a weather-resistant glue. I would have preferred to use biscuits to join the wall panels -- but the plywood we used was too thin for that, so it was blocking, screws, and glue.
I have a fair collection of tools, but you don't need too much for this project. Here are the basics:
1. Saw(s) for cutting the panels and letters. We used a circular saw for the panels and a miter saw and scroll saw for the smaller pieces. The only tricky cut is the angle for the roof (see figure); changing the roof slope so that the two roof pieces meet in a 90-degree angle would eliminate the angled cuts, but add a little height. Hand saws could be used for everything and would have scared my daughter less, but I like power tools. ;-)
2. A drill to make the entry holes and drill holes for a few bolts. If you have a sufficiently large hole cutter, that also can be used to shape the outsides of the "b" and "d" circles; I didn't, so that's what we used the scroll saw for.
3. Sandpaper and/or a power sander. We kept things a bit rustic, but there was still plenty of sanding involved....