Thursday, December 6, 2012

How to make a snow globe

   It is the beginning of December and now people are starting to decorate for Christmas. I know it is still early to fully decorate for Christmas now so today we are going to make a Christmas snow globe! There are many ways to make it but,this is the easiest way that I found to make it. Lets get started!

   Snow globes are magical, whimsical, and fun.  And they’re super easy to make at home.
The first thing you need are jars, with nice snug lids.  Check out your fridge; I grabbed an almost empty bottle of peperoncini peppers . I also had a bottle of capers, and a big jar from marinara.  Marinated artichoke heart jars work really great for these, as do little teeny tiny baby food jars.  Really any size jar works; you just have to find things to fit inside of them.

You can be creative with the items that go inside your snow globe, it’s just important that they are made of materials that won’t break down in water.  Think plastic, ceramic, etc.  If you’re not sure, just try placing the items in a bowl of water for a few hours and see if they start doing weird things.  Try thrift and craft stores for little winter-themed figurines.

Another really fun thing is to make your own little figurines with Sculpey Clay.  You can buy all different colors at almost any craft store and it just bakes in the oven.  A snowman would be super easy to make!  I snipped all of my greenery off of artificial garlands I have around my house.

I decided to take it up a notch though, and put something extra special inside.  I can’t tell you how much I love it when I have an idea in my head and it actually works like I thought it would!  I just took a photo of each kiddo, printed it out on my home printer, cut it out, and ran it through my laminator .If you don’t have a laminator, most copy stores have lamination services that don’t cost much.  Make sure when you cut around your lamination, you leave a tiny border so it stays sealed up.

      You will create your scene on the underside of the jar lid.  I just use plain ol’ hot glue.  You might want to take a piece of sand paper and rough up the inside of the jar lid so the glue adheres better.  I didn’t do that with this batch and everything has stayed put just fine, but something you can try.  If you have things with wide, flat bases, they’re easy to just glue right on.  But if you have something like my little plastic pictures, or a tree sprig with a tiny twig at the bottom, I’ve found that it’s easier for me if I have something like little rocks (those blue things you see in the photos; they’re aquarium rocks from the pet store that I had from another project) to help keep things in place.  It will make sense when you do it, but basically you can pile some glue down there, put your object in, and then mound some pebbles around it to adhere everything together as the glue dries. 

      It’s just important to remember to keep things away from the edges enough that you can still screw the lid onto the jar, so don’t fill the entire base with glue or rocks.  When everything is dry turn it upside down and shake it a few times to make sure nothing falls off!
The next step is filling up your jar with water, almost to the very top and dumping in a bunch of glitter.  I recommend adding a little more glitter than you think you need, especially if you have greenery because some of it will get stuck in there.

One thing you can do is add some glycerin, which makes the glitter float down a little slower than it does in plain water.  (Or  that baby oil accomplishes the same thing.  You can also find snow globe “snow” at some craft stores.)  Glycerin can be found in the baking aisle of craft supply stores in small bottles.  If you have some already, or find it easily, you can try that out.  I did a side by side test and found that it didn’t make a huge difference, unless I added quite a bit.  Probably at least 2-3 teaspoons per cup of water.

You know the Wilton gel colors we use in everything?  Well if those get dried out, you can add glycerin to them to restore the consistency.  You can also add it to homemade soap bubbles to make the bubbles stronger. I’ve heard you can also buy it at drug stores, often near the first aid supplies.   Isn’t it kind of interesting when things can be found in both the cake decorating and first aid aisles??  Didn’t know that, but I read it on the internet, and if there’s one thing we all should know by now it is that everything on the internet is true.  The internet is also where I discovered that if you have some benzoic acid laying around, you can make your own snow.
Anyhoo…just carefully squish your stuff in the jar as you put the lid on and tighten it.  You can put hot glue on the edge of the jar if you’re want to seal it up.  Or you could put some colored electrical tape around the edge of the jar.  I left mine un-glued  (and I strongly suggest you do, at least at first) in case I had to open them up to fix anything, or store them without water until next year, or change the water if it got cloudy, etc.  I found out that one of my little red berries was painted and turned the entire snow globe pink so I was glad they weren’t glued shut and I could just snip it out and re-fill it.  My jars haven’t leaked.  I do flip them over sometimes and set them lid-side-up just in case.  Either way it’s best to display them somewhere that won’t be damaged if a little water leaks out.

You can also paint your lids if you want to cover up the labels on them.  I’m much too lazy for paint.  (But not too lazy to laminate my children and put them in winter scenes inside of snow globes.  It’s all about priorities, people.)
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1 comment:

  1. Hey guys! Tell me if anyone enjoyed this craft and if they are going to try it!