Vintage Bird Cage Makeover

June 2, 2015

Today I'm sharing my vintage bird cage makeover.

Vintage Hendryx Co. bird cage before and after collage

vintage A.B. Hendryx brass art deco pagoda bird cage

Anybody remember this beauty? Two summers ago I was thrilled to stumble upon this awesome, vintage bird cage with accompanying metal stand at Michigan's Longest Garage Sale. I had wanted one for forever, but they were always too pricey. I really lucked out on this one and was quite happy to take it off the seller's hands.

vintage A.B.Hendryx brass art deco pagoda birdcage filled with Christmas balls

It was fun using it in various vignettes around the house. I especially loved using it at Christmas.

It was only recently that I got around to looking into its origins. I believe the bird cage was manufactured by A.B. Hendryx Company in New Haven, CT. The name was engraved on the bottom of the stand that came with it.

vintage A.B. Hendryx bird cage stand

The cage itself has no markings on it, but I'm fairly sure that it, too, came from the same company because after doing a little research I came up with a page taken from one of the A.B. Hendryx & Company's bird cage catalogs published in 1910. I found the catalog in the Hagley Digital Archives. 

The cage in the picture is very similar to mine, however, it appears to have a pedestal base beneath it, while mine does not. Otherwise it's pretty close. Since the catalog is an archival copy it's a bit difficult to read. 

I also found a number of vintage bird cages for sale online, all similar to mine, and all claiming to be A.B. Hendryx as well. According to one source, brass pagoda-style bird cages were in style from the 1920's to the 1940's. So perhaps mine is from that time period. Either way, it's a pretty cool vintage find. It's hard to tell what it might be worth. I've seen similar cages on ebay for anywhere from $30 to $200.

When it wasn't being used in various vignettes around the house, it was sitting in our basement. But I knew that it was time to update it if I wanted to include it in our every day décor. Here it is in all its original glory.

vintage A.B. Hendryx brass art deco pagoda bird cage

I guess it was ok as is, but I really was not a big fan of the dirty, dingy brass. You can't tell from the picture but it was kind of icky. So I bit the bullet and painted it, along with the metal stand. First I scrubbed it as clean as I could, then I spray painted it with three thin coats of white paint. I haven't distressed it yet, but I plan to.
vintage brass bird cage makeover-painted white

vintage brass bird cage makeover-painted white

vintage brass bird cage makeover-painted white

vintage brass bird cage makeover-painted white

I so want to fill this baby with a chandelier of some sort. But I can't justify the expense right now. What are the odds of finding a small, affordable vintage chandy at a flea market or estate sale? I'm praying they're high. Though realistically I know it ain't gonna happen.

vintage brass bird cage makeover painted white with LED string lights inside

In the interim I'm looking to improvise with some different lights. I purchased a 10 ft. LED light string with timer from Target. I like to call them happy lights. I like the look, but I'm not 100% satisfied. I actually have another trick up my sleeve that I hope to be sharing with you soon.

vintage brass bird cage makeover painted white with LED string lights inside

I just know I'll get more use out of it if it's white. I really did think the old brass was kind of depressing looking. And the white is just so much more cheerful! I love the crisp, clean look.

vintage brass bird cage makeover painted white with LED string lights inside

Well, that's it for today, friends!
 I hope you've enjoyed reading about my 
Vintage Bird Cage Makeover
and that I've inspired you in some way!

Don't forget to Pin it!

Vintage Hendryx Co. bird cage before and after collage

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Leave a Comment!

Kim Smith said...

I love the white bird cage . That is such a great idea. Great imagination.

Betsy@My Salvaged Treasures said...

I remember this cage. I really like your transformation and the addition of the lights is so clever.

NanaDiana said...

I like it so much better white--but that is just me. I think the disease you are talking about is called "white out" other words---get the WHITE spray paint OUT we are gonna paint something white! xo Diana

Glenda/MidSouth said...

I think painting it white was the right decision.
I looked for a long time for a mini looking chandelier for my vintage cage I bought several years ago, and never found one. Settled for a Xmas ornament that looks like one. Only one problem - it does not light up.
Love the old/vintage birdcages.

Crystal Grandeur said...

Very pretty bird cage. White gives a elegant look. You have done good job. Thank you.. Love sujatha:)

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

I am all for painting things white! I love your birdcage and the stand with it is so pretty. I found an already white birdcage at a yard sale that I added a pendant light to and it is now a hanging swag light on my side porch.

The Speckled Hen Cottage said...

I'm right there with you I've been painting everything white for the past few years...once you start you just can't stop!!! I also like the crisp clean look of the birdcage now, good call. Best ~ Mickie

Ivy and Elephants said...

You know I'm a sucker for a birdcage, this one has my heart a flutter!
Gorgeous in the white, can't wait to see what you do!

handmade by amalia said...

Love the white cage! So fresh and pretty.

Gayla said...

It looks great. I think it's all about what you want and what goes well with your home. If that's white, then you did the exact right thing. You didn't remove the brass. It's still there if some day you decide to dip it and change it back. My parents had a shop they frequented that re-brassed and recoppered everything. It then had a cheerful, glossy coat. I love both the brass look and the white cheerful one. Mainly, I just love that bird cage. It's great. Be fun with a flameless candle in it, too. Or a magical pumpkin come fall... Hugs.

Jeannie Marie said...

You couldn't go wrong using it either way, it has such great lines and is such a great piece. I love the clean crisp look of white best, it's a decorators dream!

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