Winter Decorating ~ How to Make A Pine Cone Terrarium

on January 8 | in Crafts, Decor, Tutorials | by | with 24 Comments


how to make a winter terrarium

I don’t know about you, but I just love how fancy words can suddenly make a simple craft seem more…well…fancy!

Take for example the word “terrarium”.

Now, normally I might be tempted to call this craft “bowl with pine cones stuck in foam, moss on top and rocks from my yard sitting under glass dome”.

But, call it a terrarium and, well, suddenly I’ve upped the fancy factor, don’t you think?

Technically speaking, a terrarium is a container which holds plants and sometimes even animals under controlled conditions. It is intended to create a replica of what one might find in nature. And the fact that they are usually enclosed means that it is an environment which is easier to control. This would be in direct contrast to what happens in my home when my children are in an enclosed environment. Although the animals part wouldn’t be too far off!

Pine Cone Terrarium collage


After the Christmas decor is packed away I find myself not only feeling taunted by the vast expanses of emptiness but also struggling to fill up those vast expanses. Normally I just let them taunt me for awhile while I eat the rest of the Christmas cookies. But, this year I decided to take action! Terrarium action!

Doesn’t that sound thrilling?

This simple craft was inspired by this version I found on Pinterest. And all you need to make your own Pine Cone Terrarium is a bowl (or even a large coffee cup!), pine cones, dowels, moss and any other “nature” you want to add.

winter terrarium supplies



Step 1: Using a hot glue gun, attach the dowel to the bottom of the pine cone. You may have to cut off some length of the dowel so that the pine cone rests directly on top of the foam.


dowel on pine cone


Step 2: Insert the dowel, with pine cone attached, into foam inside bowl. Add different sizes for visual interest.

pine cones in foam

Step 3: Cover the foam with moss. Admire the little pine cone detail on your bowl and pat yourself on the back about how perfectly it all ties together.

moss in bowl pine cone terrarium


Step 4: Add little pebbles or anything nature inspired. I also added some “faux” snow to enhance the winter-y feel.

pine cone terrarium FOLK At the Picket Fence


Step 5: Cover with a glass dome or cloche to complete the terrarium.

glass dome pine cone terrarium


Don’t you think everything looks better when you put it under glass? I love how this takes on an almost fairy-like quality! Of course, the glass also makes it more fancy too.

Now, this is one controlled environment I can handle!

What about you?

Do you decorate for winter? Have you made any crafts yet this year?

I’d love to hear from you!




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24 Responses to Winter Decorating ~ How to Make A Pine Cone Terrarium

  1. Laura says:

    Now, that is my kind of terrarium. I would love to know where you got the glass dome.

  2. Miss Kitty says:

    Thanks so much, Vanessa, for that great tutorial on such a simple but effective decor item. Love the photography too! Is that by you?

  3. Beautiful photos of a simple but stunning project!

  4. Diana Johannesen says:

    You are so right a little dome…..and you have upped the creativity level.
    Could not believe how the simplicity in your photos made it look so elegant.
    I added red felted hearts for my Valentine decor! Thank you…

  5. I like it! Your photos are perfection, V!

  6. It’s beautiful! And I did use a terrarium to do a little winter decorating too… I have the fanciest big ball of twine you ever did see! :)

    Awesome shoot!

  7. Jacque says:

    This turned out so nice, and the photos are stunning!

  8. Rebecca says:

    I love this idea! So simply and rustic….for some reason I have so many pinecones this year so what a great way to use a few. I’ve been looking for a reason to buy a cloche so now I have one=)

  9. Barbara says:

    So cool. Simple. But a fresh slice of the outdoors. Love it.

  10. Carol Reddin says:

    Love the terrarium! And, changing the look with the seasons or holidays (as one reader mentioned) would really be easy. Very pretty!

  11. [...] I’m sharing how to make this very simple Pine Cone Terrarium over on the FOLK Magazine Blog and I’d love to have you pop over and visit me [...]

  12. Cindy says:

    Simply beautiful Vanessa!

  13. Love this! Adding a little bit of green inside for winter is a fab idea.

  14. The first that caught my eye was your STUNNING photography. Of course your Terrarium is beautiful also :)

  15. I am in love with your terrarium. I would like to try to make myself one. Thanks for the wonderful idea. Pinecones are in abundance at my place…Now it’s finding just that “perfect” one. :) Great idea, and thanks for sharing.

  16. Sheila says:

    Thanks for the fun idea. It is hard to come up with decorating ideas for January and February. This will be great to get thru the winter months.

  17. Now this is a craft I can do. I’m not much into complicated crafts. I love this idea with the natural elements, and I love the funny way your wrote the post. A+++ Vanessa

  18. [...] see, the other day I shared how to make a Pine Cone Terrarium  and today I’m showing this little creation and now I’m wondering if I’m going to [...]

  19. How beautiful. I find pretty bowls at thrift stores and this would be a neat project for them! Thanks and Happy New year!

  20. susan says:

    I have pinecones galore off of 1 huge tree..Im going to have to make some. Cute idea

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