How to Design a Terrarium from a Glass Jar

Four Parts:Preparing the JarPreparing the Styrofoam Balls or DiscsAdding the SceneryPlacing the Jar on the Display

Making terrariums from glass jars is a fun craft the entire family will enjoy. In order to make this project work, you’ll need to use a jar that comes with a lid, preferably a mason jar. Select your display items and ground cover to make this terrarium one you will want to proudly display at home.

Part 1
Preparing the Jar

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    Remove the jar lid. Clean out the jar.
    • Even if you're working with a new jar, always remove dust or debris before making the terrarium.
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    Allow the jar to dry thoroughly before you work.

Part 2
Preparing the Styrofoam Balls or Discs

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    Prepare the Styrofoam. If you have purchased discs, simply glue one disc into place inside the jar lid.
    • Cut Styrofoam balls in half if you are using a ball. Use a sharp knife or scissors to create a clean cut. Glue in place and use the other half for the next terrarium.
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    Measure the circumference of the Styrofoam ball or disc and transfer your measurements to apply to the groundcover/moss. If you purchased sheets, you will need an exact measurement. Cut and form to fit Styrofoam.
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    Apply the groundcover to the Styrofoam. Either glue the moss sheet into place or cover the Styrofoam with glue and then apply groundcover (glitter, loose moss, etc.).

Part 3
Adding the Scenery

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    Add internal scenery. Get creative and position your plants, animals, and so forth. Add whatever you plan to use before gluing into place.
    • Consider gingerly adding the jar to the top to see what it could look like too.
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    Glue the internal scenery into place. Allow time to dry. Don't add the jar immediately as this can disturb the scene you've carefully laid out. Allow overnight drying time to ensure all pieces stay in place.

Part 4
Placing the Jar on the Display

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    Add the jar. Lower over the display and carefully screw into place. You can add a small amount of glue to the rim to make it permanent, but doing this is not necessary.

Tips

  • Create an “air” effect and purchase long wires to hold your terrarium creatures in place. For example, if you are displaying butterflies, glue the butterfly base to the wire and then stick the wire into the Styrofoam base.
  • Place terrariums in small clear, plastic bags and tie with a ribbon to give as a gift.

Things You'll Need

Gather Supplies

  • Jar(s) for the project; Mason jars work well, or upcycle a jelly or pickle jar––make sure the lid fits well

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  • Enough Styrofoam balls or discs for each lid; they must fit easily inside the jar top (trace the inside of one jar lid and bring it with you to the craft store to obtain the right size

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  • Terrarium display items; they must fit easily inside the terrarium

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  • Ground cover such as faux moss or even glitter
  • Sharp scissors (or kid-friendly scissors) and glue (any non-toxic type glue will work or you can use a hot glue gun)

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