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DIY Snow Globe Tutorial

Snow Globes. The How and Why. and when and where.

Snow Globes. The How and Why. and when and where.

This is my first try at posting a tutorial so bear with me. I have read enough that I should be able to get the general idea across but if there are any parts making you shout “WTF Carys?!?!” then A) calm down, it`s just a snow globe for goodness sake and, B) send me a message and I`ll try to explain. Okay, here goes.

Supplies, supplies!

Supplies, supplies!

You will need:

Jars – we bought 500ml mason jars from Micheals and then used randoms that we each had at home. A note about jars, the wider the rim at the bottom, the better. The ones that narrow quite a bit and have a lot of bumps and ridges near  the rim end up making it so that you have to make a little pedestal to raise up your items or you wont see all of them.

Things to put in the jars: I got my deer and my fox at Chapters for $4 each but we found similar ones at Micheals. The white trees were from Micheals and Karli`s green ones were a crazy good find from the dollar store. If you buy your jars before you buy your items, bring the jars with you so you can make sure that there is enough room for the item to fit through the narrowest part of the rim of the jar.

Glitter: here`s where things got tricky. We couldn`t find a ton of info on exactly what kind of glitter to get and we didn`t really think it mattered. We were wrong. If the glitter is too fine, it won`t swirl around much because there isn`t enough surface area to allow it to sink slowly, it will either sink or sit at the top of the jar, doing nothing for you except making you want to pull your hair out. We used the Creatology brand from Micheals because it was a big jar, it was cheap and the glitter didn`t look too fine (well, it looked just fine but it didn`t look too small, know what I mean?). It worked pretty well but we were still both left wishing there was more swirl action. I don`t know what the actual product is that they use in store-bought snow globes, it looks like little styrofoam balls, and no one at Micheals seemed to know either. The next day, I ended up buying some sheer, iridescent confetti from the wedding section (Party Ice confetti made by Celebrate It) and that worked a lot better because it has randomly shaped  chunks that seemed to float around a bit more.

A urine sample container from your workplace: Ha! Did you notice that item on the table there? Fear not, we just used it to put some glycerine in and those spec containers work great for that kind of thing. Alternatively, you could just buy a little bottle of glycerine like a normal person (in the cake decorating section – it’s used when you`re working with fondant).

Really strong, waterproof glue: Trust me when I say you want to invest in good glue for this. Something strong, something waterproof, something  that has frightening poison warning images on it, something that requires you only use it in a well ventilated area such as the top of a mountain in a stiff wind – something that strong. Trying to do this project with your Elmer`s school glue or a glue gun will result in your having a mason jar with a bunch of plastic things floating aimlessly about like one of those weird science specimens with formaldehyde and a random body part – and those my friends, are probably not going to add to the festive tone you are trying to create here. We used Epoxy and it smelled but it worked great.

Water: We got ours at Micheals. Just joking, tap water did the trick (Martha calls for distilled water collected by a fair maiden from a babbling brook in the moonlight but Karli`s tap water is basically just that).

Measuring spoons

Something to use as a pedestal if you need to raise your items up: I just used small, round wooden discs (from the kids craft section – with the popsicle sticks and what not). Glue them together and let them set for a few hours before gluing your items down.

Step 1: Glue your items to the inside (obviously) lid of the jar. If you have any patience, you will do this at least a few hours early (if you want to avoid the “Your tree is floating!” portion of the evening). The Epoxy we used said to let it cure for 24 – 72 hours. For most of our items, we only let them dry for an hour or so, but if you end up with floating animals, just dry everything off and glue again and this time, WAIT.

During drying, feel free to gossip about your co-workers. We didn`t do that but you might feel like it, depending on what kind of person you are.

During drying, feel free to gossip about your co-workers. We didn`t do that but you might feel like it, depending on what kind of person you are.

Step 2: Fill your jar to within about 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the rim of the jar (you want it as full as possible while taking into account that your items will displace some of the water). If you do get some spillage when you insert the lid in, make sure you dry off the rim of the jar and wipe away any glitter pieces sticking to the edges as that can affect the seal and cause leaks (yes, we figured that out the hard way).

Step 3: Add about 1/2 to 3/4 tsp of glycerine. We were a little worried about adding too much as many tutorials warned that too much causes the glitter to clump up. We played around with the amounts in a test jar and found this amount seemed to work well.

Step 4: Add approx. 1 tablespoon of glitter (for standard size jar). We also added a sprinkling of fine silver glitter to add some shimmer.

december 035

It will sit on the top like this and make you fret that it will coat your items when you dunk them. It will, but after a few shakes it will come off.

It will sit on the top like this and make you fret that it will coat your items when you dunk them. It will, but after a few shakes it will come off.

Step 5: Insert your jar lid. Make sure that your items are facing the right direction (ie. NOT facing the part of the jar with the writing on it. Of course I didn`t do that. What? No! Karli maybe, but not me).

Step 6: Hold the lid in place while you screw the cap on.

Step 7: Shake and enjoy! Shout things like “Aaaahhhh! I LOVE the owls! I LOVE that you found those owls! Look at my deer! It`s so cute! Kind of vintagy no?! We could make these for all year round!” and so on and so on.

If you find that you have over/under glittered, or one of your pieces falls off, or you want to test out more glycerine, it`s pretty easy to just unscrew and fish things out. Just make sure that you wipe down the rim well and dry your lid before reinserting so that you avoid leaks.

Deer, oh deer.

Deer, oh deer.

4 thoughts on “DIY Snow Globe Tutorial

  1. Thanks for this, my kids have been begging to make these for ages, but I can never be bothered. I was put out by the distilled water ingredient in so many tutorials. Distilled? Really? Glad to know it’s not necessary. And you’re very funny btw.

  2. oh my god, you two are hilarious! I CANNOT believe I wasn’t invited to this snow globe crafting event however. And I especially I hope I wasn’t one of the said co-workers you ‘weren’t’ gossiping about!

  3. Pingback: Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow! « 37calvertrd

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