May's Crafternoon was our eagerly anticipated Succulent Terrarium making workshop, this time at the house of one of our regular attendees, Cindy, and it was ludicrously AWESOME!
Everyone left with a beautiful layered indoor garden, a tummy full of delicious food and tea, new friends, extra smile lines and the know-how to care for their terrarium and make more at home.
Even the not-so-green-fingered (including me) can be terrarium-tastic, it really is very simple- and fast! We spent 80% of our time at the Crafternoon drinking tea, chatting and eating the myriad of homemade goodies brought to share, and filled the other 20% of our time crafting some seriously cute little terrariums.
Disclaimer: Pedantic people would argue the term 'terrarium' is a bit of a misnomer here, as we used open vases for our creations, but traditionally terrariums are closed, creating their own little mini ecosystems. However, I find open ones much easier to keep alive, so we went with open, fish-bowl type vessels instead!
We tried a 'bring-a-plate' approach to this Crafternoon and it worked a treat! Everyone brought something sweet or savoury to the table to share and we had everything from sushi to quiche, (plus pinwheels and peanutbutterscotch cookies made by yours truly), dips, chips and Aussie favourites such as slice, lamingtons, jelly cake and honeyjoys.
Just look at this table groaning under the weight of all the treats and tea (please note my lovely vintage hot water urn, enabling our happy crafters to stay warm in this chilly Victorian winter):
Making An Open Succulent Terrarium:
You can find our FREE Terrarium Tutorial at the bottom of this post, feel free to print it for your records but ask permission to share it around please! :)
Everyone was handed their glass bowls, introduced to the session and taught about the process of creating and caring for a terrarium, plus some tips on making them aesthetically pleasing. We then took our time adding layers, selecting succulents and choosing stones to make each one unique.
Cindy and I had set up stations for each layer of our terrariums:
6) Decorative stones
The layer of rocks is to provide a pretty base drainage layer, since our bowls have no drainage holes and succulents like well-draining enviroments.
The moss absorbs moisture and stops the sand and soil from getting too mixed up in our rocks, so we have a clean layered look at the end. Thanks to Cindy for portioning it up before we started- very handy!
The sand is mostly for decorative purposes but our regular soil did need a little sand mixed in to make it more suitable for succulents. If you're feeling flash you can used specialist cacti and succulent soil, or mix through some Perlite, gravel or grit, but regular soil works fine too.
I even provided rubber gloves to save our nails from getting dirty!
Choosing our succulents was the hardest part as Cindy and I had gathered every variety we could get our hands on! Small ones, big ones, juicy ones, spikey ones, flat ones, ones that looked like jelly beans or roses or bananas, even knobbly little ugly ones! Yes, those are the correct scientific names for each variety... almost.
We made little wells in our soil and popped in our cuttings, and packed the soil around them again so they were nice and snug.
Last but not least was our decorative stone table, which had an air of ice-cream toppings about it- so pretty! People either chose one colour, blended a couple or even carefully placed different colours in concentric circles like the terrarium below, made by Mel- very creative!
Here are some more pics of our happy crafters at the workshop with their lovely creations- sorry if I caught you mid-laughter!
Here's a few more terrariums and layered succulent jars I've made for myself and for gifts, including mini dinosaurs, cacti and even one HUGE one to sit on our 4m+ kitchen island bench:
SUCCULENT TERRARIUM TUTORIAL:
So you've learnt about Terrariums, read about our sociable workshop, ooh-ed over terrarium pics and NOW you want to make one yourself, right?
Well, HERE is a FREE downloadable DIY Succulent Terrarium Tutorial:
For more inspiration and creative ideas, follow MyCrafternoons Vic on Pinterest, 'Like' us on Facebook or sign up to our infrequent but cute mailing list!
The next Crafternoon is set for Sunday 28th June 2015, and will be hosted by Crafternoons supporter Sasskia at the Bunyip Hotel in Cavendish in my absence- more details to follow, stay tuned!