Monday, March 7, 2011

Terrarium Transformation

So, about a month ago, I saw a decorative terrarium in a flowershop/gift shop in Amish Country here in Ohio that I thought was unique and soo cute! It was about $50 and felt sure I could go home, google it, look on Amazon, or wherever, and find it way cheaper. I started searching everywhere.

Just last week, these were in my new Pottery Barn catalog. I was temporarily very excited. But it was $99 for the small one, and $249 for a large one. No going!

These are a few other pictures I found on the web, some of them not even available for sale. But, the cheapest was $59. 

 Uggh!! So, you can imagine my surprise when I found one at TJ Maxx a few days ago!! It was $20!  It was a unfinished grayish color.  Loved the size and shape and price, but not the color/finish.  Before:

This picture actually looks pretty good, but it was really the wrong shade for my house...I don't have any gray, and a little too primitive looking for my taste. And, after seeing the ones in PB, I was really liking the creamy color.  So, it was redo time.  It wasn't as easy as just a can of spray paint though.  First the glass needed to be taken out, but there was silicone holding it in. Had to scrape that all off without damaging the thin plates of glass.  The end of the lid had to come off so the glass would slide out.  The hardware had to come off as well as the ribbon to hold lid up. 
This had me wondering if it was all worth it!

So I started to spray it with an ivory matte paint.  I kind of panicked.  It looked worse.  The little nail holes were more predominant and I was worried for awhile.  I kept pluggin' away.  I used some spackle and covered the holes, sprayed it a little more, and started liking what I saw.  Then I had the idea of a little glaze-like look.  I decided this would be perfect:
I also thought about shoe polish, but this ended up with the effect I was after!  It just took a small amount on a rag, rubbed on and then wiped most of it off.  I also took a very light grit sandpaper and took some of the paint off around the edges for a bit of a antiqued/worn/used look.  Then, I cleaned the glass, put the hardware on and spent awhile (!!) deciding what to put in it.  I decided on a few fresh plants, a pop of color, a thrift store tiny green vase (25 cents) and a cute little bird tealight holder!
Finished terrarium:
Now, I need to decide where it will be permanently.  I originally liked the idea of the kitchen table but it will be a lot of moving every day/night for every meal.  Our large coffee table is another option, but it will affect my hubby's view of the TV, so that may not fly either. I want this to be a piece that transitions from season to season.  Maybe next month I will do a robin's nest with a spring theme, and I can't wait for a beach theme this summer with some shells and white sand. So excited to change this every month or so!
The terrarium is in the family room for now.... FYI...the dimensions are approx. 15" wide by 12" deep by 18" high. I am loving this one!

What would you put in it?


Deb said...

I love this Julie!

Gwendolyn said...

Cute! I've had my eye out for one of those as well. I would love to have fresh herbs in the kitchen and that would be a super cute way to display them.