The very second that I mentioned that I was not interested in making things this holiday, my mind began to turn and inspiration hit... kind of hard... that's just how it goes sometimes. I found myself drooling over Anthropologie's Mason Jar Snow globes after a trip in to see what was new (I should never go in there... ever... I really can't be trusted) but had a little sticker shock when I saw they were $30 (now on sale for $7.00 go figure!). I then began prowling the internet for tutorials and found many... my favorite though is here. So I had to make them for this year's favor... here's what I did...
I used mason jars we had around from our jelly making and canning adventures, found some sweet figurines (one special to each guest) in themed tubes at Joann's, ordered small sisal trees online (big mistake... more on that in a second), used snow-village glitter/snow, and found distilled water and glycerin at CVS (did you know that CVS employs a personal shopper to help you find things during the holiday season? They do. She was a savior!). A few notes, I probably wouldn't use mason jars again... the band made it impossible to see the figurines once they were glued to the bottom of the lid. Martha used baby food jars which made much more sense... that's why she's Martha and I am a High School English teacher. Next time.
Rob cut out these pieces of wood from left over trim we had to make everything higher and more visible in the snow globe. I used epoxy glue (keep the windows open when using that stuff!) to glue everything down. I would next time use sand paper to get a bit more traction with the lid.
... Rob got a husky (they're big around here you see)
...Chip got a big red barn because he and Rob's mom have the most beautiful red barn...
... Rob's mom got a sweet doe...
... and I got Big Ben (score!)...
The process and some notes:
* use baby food or pasta sauce jars for a better result (you won't need the wood inserts!)
* sand paper will scruff up the bottom allowing a better seal between the lid and anything glued
* notice I've masked the final products in dark light... well, my (very, very inexpensive) trees lost their color making everything a little green... everyone was sweet and said they loved them anyway... I would test the sisal trees first, maybe pretreating them in some water prior to gluing them on... Chip's had one tree and therefore much less green everywhere
* After gluing down things to the lid, I allowed the glue to set for 24 hours. This didn't keep Rob's from coming unglued which was a bummer but I learned a great deal from his green mouthed husky globe. Next, I filled the jars with distilled water and two or three drops of glycerin (this is to keep the snow from falling too quickly).
* I added just a few teaspoons of snow to the water/glycerin mixture but I really love the way glitter looks in them and will get some next time instead of the snow.
* screwing on the lids was a little messy... I added a little water and experimented with the snow globes after the first one... less water is better and makes for a better seal.
I really loved how this little favor was easy to make and personalized for each of our guests. They loved them and were fun to play with during dinner! I would never discourage anyone from making these, they were super easy and hopefully my little surprises (tree discoloring, glue un-gluing) are helpful in someone else's process. I've added the snow globes to the How To section at the banner for easy viewing and referencing... and no, your eyes don't deceive you, they're a little green (or blue...the husky is looking a little blue these days), and I love them, flaws and all.