DIY Terrarium for under $50!*

DIY Terrarium from

We have all been sucked in by Pinterest right? I see people who barely know how to use FB pinning away, so I think most people are as equally obsessed as me. I can loose myself for hours looking through all the pages of DIY and crafting ideas.

But lately one thing keeps jumping out at me. Terrariums. Before Pinterest, I didn’t even really know what they were. Then I saw them at Potterybarn. And again at West Elm. And over at Anthropologie (no link – can’t find the one I saw in store). And after seeing them ALL over pinterest, I was hooked. I could not stand it anymore, I had to have one too. Thanks for the cool kids peer pressure, Potterybarn/West Elm/Anthro!

DIY Terrarium from

The only hold up?  I wasn’t willing to spend a lot of money and I didn’t want to have live plants. Live plants require a lot of special things…like charcoal and sand…and they have to be watered occasionally. You also have to trim your plants and watch out to make sure no mold starts to grow. I don’t know about you, but that is way too much work.

While I had made up my mind that I wanted one, I wasn’t sure it was possible to get one like I wanted. Could I do a Terrarium for under $100, with no living plants, that still looks real? Turns out, you can! And better yet, you can do it for a little under $50!!

DIY Terrarium from

I tried hitting up my local Michaels first, but their choices of glass and succulents was really crappy — sorry Michaels, but it was. Next I went over to Hobby Lobby and they had everything I needed…and it was on sale 50% off! So glad I caught them on sale week (in case you don’t know, Hobby Lobby does the same type of sale as Michaels…you can almost always wait and get everything 50% off!).


Supplies Needed:

Glass House: or glass bowl or vase like used here or here

Preserved Moss: Hobby Lobby had a huge selection. Pick what works with your theme. I bought a big bag of a pretty green moss I found for only $3.50. 

Succulents: Pick out the ones you like and then only buy 3-5 succulents (depending on the size of your terrarium). I thought I would use a ton…but really it just looked overly crowded. You don’t need many to make a statement! 

Mushrooms: Or any other kind of little thing you want to add interest! I have seen everything from tiny garden gnomes to butterflies to tiny hidden dinosaurs. I found these mushrooms in the “spring” section of Hobby Lobby for $1.50. 

Wire Cutters: to trim any long stems off the succulents. 

DIY Terrarium from

Then I came home and put it all together in about 15 minutes. I was shocked! It made me feel actually crafty…and I am so happy with the final result!

There isn’t much to tell you on how to put it together — just layer your moss and arrange your decorations however you want. But I will give you one quick tip I discovered after getting frustrated with my plant layout. I found that layering my moss to make one side higher and the front lower, gave depth to the terrarium. It also made great little “fields” for my mushrooms to grow! :)


If you happen to get a glass without a top, you will probably have to dust your succulents every now and then. To do that, I just rinse them in the sink and let them dry. Then stick them right back in!

Enjoy your Terrarium!  

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18 Responses to “DIY Terrarium for under $50!”

  1. 1

    Mel — January 8, 2013 @ 12:51 am

    I love it! I have been wanting a terrarium for about a year now — inspired to try this on my own…

  2. 2

    Amanda — January 8, 2013 @ 1:47 am

    So cute! What a great idea, Jessica! :)

  3. 3

    Ali | Gimme Some Oven — January 8, 2013 @ 9:28 am

    This looks amazing!!! My mom just made me a terrarium for Christmas — so much more fun (and inexpensive) homemade!!

  4. 4

    Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough — January 8, 2013 @ 9:31 am

    This is SO adorable! Definitely pinning for a rainy day project. :)

  5. 5

    Joanne @ Fifteen Spatulas — January 8, 2013 @ 9:39 am

    I love this! Seriously, your DIY version looks super expensive and cute!

  6. 6

    Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie — January 8, 2013 @ 9:54 am

    So cute!

  7. 7

    Ashley — January 8, 2013 @ 10:10 am

    So this is the cutest thing ever!!! LOVE the little house you found for it. Perfect!

  8. 8

    Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking — January 8, 2013 @ 10:44 am

    Oh you crafty gurl! Looks great!

  9. 9

    Sweet y Salado — January 8, 2013 @ 11:57 am

    I am obsessed, I mean OBSESSED with terrariums, absolutely love them. But I’m a plant gal and love the live plants in mine. I have to say that yours looks like the real thing, you could’ve fooled me, girl. Oh and the mushrooms, adorable.

    • Jessica replied: — January 8th, 2013 @ 12:50 pm

      The mushrooms are my favorite part :-)

  10. 10

    Caitlin — January 8, 2013 @ 12:17 pm

    I have been looking at terrariums on Etsy for the past week or so, as part of my desk area remodeling. This post came at the perfect time, AND I already have a glass bowl I could use. Thanks!

  11. 11

    Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) — January 8, 2013 @ 1:01 pm

    Wow, that is one of the coolest diys I have seen recently. And its totally doable and really worth the end result.

  12. 12

    Megan {Country Cleaver} — January 8, 2013 @ 11:31 pm

    So pretty and that wrought iron look is just so gorgeous with those succulents. Love the textures here.

  13. 13

    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — January 9, 2013 @ 1:10 am

    You’re so crafty! This looks so pretty! Love the little mushrooms!

  14. 14

    Michelle — March 4, 2013 @ 3:20 am

    Oh my, that it’s just too cute!!! I just found you tonight…Glad I did. my I ask where you found your quaint little house?
    Thank you

    • Jessica replied: — March 4th, 2013 @ 12:51 pm

      It was from Hobby Lobby :)

  15. 15

    Jess — July 23, 2013 @ 6:07 am

    Hi there, This is so gorgeous – thanks for sharing :) I am trying to source a number of these terrarium glass houses. Looked through Hobby Lobby but couldn’t find it. Do you know the brand/ actual name at all?
    Thanks in advance!

    • Jessica replied: — July 23rd, 2013 @ 12:08 pm

      Hi Jess! I’m sorry but I don’t have any more information about it. Sorry I can’t be more help!

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