Make an Easy DIY Snow Globe.

Make a classic, real, round snow globe.  Because a tree in a mason jar isn’t a snow globe, it’s a snow jar.  Bang out these DIY snow globes in about 15 minutes with a few basic materials.

Beautiful classic Christmas snow globe with bottle brush trees inside in various sizes.

 

Skip right to the printable tutorial.

Why make your own snow globe?  Because you can put anything you want in it. If you want a pair of boobies in your snow globe you can do it. Although you shouldn’t, because boobies aren’t very much in the spirit of Christmas.  Usually.

Pinterest is bursting with mason jar snow globes, but to me – that’s not a snow globe. It’s a snow jar. I like regular, round, snow globes. So a few years ago I wrote a post on how to make snow globes. I took a look at the post a few weeks ago and deemed it ridiculous. Why would you let me write that?

It was very complicated. It involved tools for the love of God. TOOLS for a snow globe. I’m not sure why I made it so complicated.

I’ve simplified my original technique with the addition of one simple thing.  Corks. Yep. Like from a wine bottle. These snow globes are simple enough that a kid can make them.

So here we go, you and I are going to make simple Snow Globes.  Right here.  Right now.

The possibilities of what you put in your snow globe are as never-ending as the last children’s dance recital you went to.

But there are a few restrictions. It needs to fit into the neck of the Christmas ball and it needs to be something made of – plastic. Yes. I said it. Plastic. Or rubber. That’s because some metals will rust and turn the water murky anything else will degrade. If the item is bendy, you can put something quite big in the snow globe, like the simple trees I chose. 

My simple trees happen to have wire, but I’m crossing my fingers that it’s steel wire that’s been treated to prevent rust.  I’m a risk taker like that.  I also run on slippery floors in socks. Risk TAKER.


How to Make a Snow Globe

Materials for making a snow globe laid out including a pitcher of water, a clear plastic Christmas ball and tiny bottle brush trees.

Materials

Clear Plastic Christmas Ball (choose ones with wide necks so you can fit a figurine or tree in it)

Distilled Water (optional)

Glycerine (optional)

Sparkles

Mini bottle brush tree

E 6000 glue

Small bowl

Quick Instructions:

Remove neck collar from the ball.

Fill with distilled water and 2 drops of glycerin.

Add sparkles.

Push tree “trunk” wire into the centre of a cork and shove it into the globe.

Glue the hell out of it.

 

Detailed instructions:

Grid showing 4 steps in making a DIY snowglobe; filling ball with water, adding sparkles, adding glycerin and topping with more water.

 

  • Pull the plastic top off of the plastic ball and set it in a round bowl so it doesn’t go rolling around. You now have a globe! Fill the globe with distilled water until it’s 3/4 full.
  • Pour in some sparkles. A medium sized globe with need around 1/4 tsp of sparkles. Add 2 drops of glycerin. NO more. Top the globe up with water until it comes just below where the neck meets the ball.

Cute little green bottle brush tree in the palm of a hand.

  • Cut your wine bottle corks in half with a serrated knife
  • Pull the bottle brush tree out of its base if it has one. Remove some of the lower “branches” of the tree so you have an inch of bare trunk. Stick the trunk into the centre of a piece of cork. Make sure it’s perfectly straight.

Tiny bottle brush tree on a cork stand.

Shoving the trunk into the cork will be easier if you pre-punch a hole in the cork with a toothpick.  Also holding the trunk with needle-nose pliers to shove it down into the hole makes the job easier.

Pushing a bottle brush tree into a plastic Christmas ball, making a snow globe.

  • Push the tree into the globe forcing down any errant branches with a toothpick or something. Force the cork into the neck and push it down until it *almost* touches the water level.

Sealing a cork used in snow globe with E6000 glue.

  • Keeping the globe in the bowl that’s stabilizing it, seal the cork top, sides and where it touches the neck with E6000. Let your snow globes cure overnight undisturbed.

DIY snow globes with their corks drying overnight.

  • The next morning turn the globes upside down and give them a shake or slight squeeze to make sure they’re watertight. If they aren’t (one of mine wasn’t) turn it cork side up again and let it dry then apply more E6000 and let it cure again.

Simple home made snow globes with bottle brush trees laying on barn board.

If your globes have all cured and there are no leaks you’re done!  I have to admit I like them without any base at all, just like this. But I know most people will probably want some sort of base for them. That’s where you can get creative because the base you choose will make a big difference in how the snow globes look.

You can go modern, traditional, weird – whatever you want.

IDEAS FOR BASES

      • salt cellars
      • candle holders
      • vases
      • zinc mason jar caps
      • mason jars
      • tea cups

Below I’m using 2 short antique silver candleholders, 2 gold metal tubes (that originally had candles inside), and 1 tall, wood, mid century modern tea light holder.

Christmas snow globes displayed on candle holders of different heights on modern white buffet.

Easy DIY Snow Globes.

Easy DIY Snow Globes.

Yield: Snow Globes
Active Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
Difficulty: Easy(ish)
Estimated Cost: $10

YOU are going to make a snow globe. You are crafty!

Let's do this.

Materials

  • Clear Plastic Christmas balls
  • Distilled water
  • Glycerin
  • White sparkles (fine or superfine)
  • Wine corks
  • E6000 glue
  • Tiny bottle brush tree
  • Bowl for stabilizing plastic ball while you work on it

Instructions

  1. Pull the plastic top off of the plastic ball and set it in a round bowl so it doesn't go rolling around. You now have a globe! Fill the globe with distilled water until it's 3/4 full.
  2. Pour in some sparkles. A medium sized globe with need around 1/4 tsp of sparkles. Add 2 drops of glycerin. NO more. Top the globe up with water until it comes just below where the neck meets the ball.
  3. Cut your wine bottle corks in half with a serrated knife
  4. Pull the bottle brush tree out of its base if it has one. Remove some of the lower "branches" of the tree so you have an inch of bare trunk. Stick the trunk into the centre of a piece of cork. Make sure it's perfectly straight.
  5. Push the tree into the globe forcing down any errant branches with a toothpick or something. Force the cork into the neck and push it down until it *almost* touches the water level.
  6. Keeping the globe in the bowl that's stabilizing it, seal the cork top, sides and where it touches the neck with E6000. Let it cure overnight.

Notes

If your cork is too small for the neck of your globe, steam the cork! Putting a cork in a steamer basket for several minutes will make it permanently bigger. It's a great trick I used for my own snow globes.

Don't use too much sparkle. Excessive sparkles will just clump together in a blob.

Glycerin is optional. It helps slow down the rate the sparkles fall at, but it isn't imperative. If you don't have it, don't worry about it.

Distilled water should remain clear for longer, but it also isn't mandatory. You can just use tap water.

If your trees are too big, don't fret. You can make a really big fake tree much smaller by just using the top of it.

To make sticking your tree into the cork easier, pre-punch a hole in the cork's centre with a toothpick. Hold the stem of the tree with pliers to make shoving it into the cork easier.

TIP

You can light your globe up by sticking a strand of copper wire lights into the base that you’re putting the globe in.

Lighting up a snow globe with copper wire lights.

 

REMEMBER to check for leaking every once in a while and when you store them away after the season, store them with the corks facing up so there’s no chance of springing a leak while they’re tucked away in the basement.

Have fun making these snow globes.  No tools required, lol. 

→Follow me on Instagram where I often make a fool of myself←

Make an Easy DIY Snow Globe.

68 Comments

  1. gloria says:

    Love this. Any idea how well it will hold up over time? Is it a one season deal, will the water evaporate, turn cloudy? Forgive me for being devil’s advocate, but if I’d like to give one as a gift, it would be nice to know in advance. Will still make if for myself. Thanks.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Gloria, this is the first time I’ve made these this particular way, so I’m not sure how well they will hold up. The best way to keep them from going cloudy is to use things inside that won’t rust or release particles. ~ karen!

  2. Anakit says:

    Beautifully displayed!

  3. whitequeen96 says:

    These look great! Much easier than I remember, and I love the idea of the lights in the base. I might finally make some!

  4. Kmulberry says:

    Sheesh, you’re some kinda wicked talented! I LOVE these and can’t wait to give’m a try. Read through the comments and have no idea where you linked lights or why people think you’re submersing the lights in water 🤔. Will read through again, before I get started, to be sure I didn’t miss anything.

  5. Vikki says:

    Absolute genius! I’m doing this!

  6. Lois Baron says:

    So glad you republished this. You are COMPLETELY right about those snow jar things. I love yours! I hope the whole “revamp your content to make it search-engine-optimized” project is going better than expected (which is to say, faster–and not driving you to drink too much and stare into the fire gloomily each night contemplating giving up altogether).

    • Karen says:

      I’m doing all those things Lois, lol. K, well not the drinking because I’m not good at it. But the staring gloomily etc. It’s O.K. I’m seeing results so that’s good motivation and I LOVE being able to make these older posts better and more useful for people. ~ karen!

  7. Globe Ninja says:

    So, it’s a few years on now – how did they hold up? Can you post a new pic?

  8. Santa Clause says:

    Be sure the lights are water proof. Also a few drops of rubbing alcohol will make sure the water doesn’t become dank over time.

  9. Brandy Whisenant says:

    I used Silk* brand yogurt cups as my base, and they worked wonderfully. They’ve got the perfect taper if you flip them upside down and paint them (and I had some snazzy vegan yogurtsicles afterward)

  10. KiwiKat says:

    To get rid of air bubbles when we used to create flower jars at the school agricultural days as kids, we used to submerge the entire jar in water (sometimes we used food colouring in it as well…not sure how this would work with the glycerine in the there (although if it was only at the end that you were submerging, it might be okay.
    How we did it was fill the jar with water, put the flowers/decorations in the lid, then submerge the lot in a sink of water while we sealed it all up – obviously you might still have issues with the sealing, although there is a waterproof silicon sealer that dries clear here that is used on boats that might work (I think it’s a Selley’s one)…just a thought if the air bubbles annoy you too much!

  11. Laura Bee says:

    So cool! The lights in water freak me out though. But I even get nervous when my Christmas lights get covered in snow lol. I’d pop a fake tealight or two under it, there are little LED push lights that should fit.

  12. Kathleen says:

    Absolutely gorgeous! Such a clever girl you are! :)

  13. Marna says:

    Awesome! Really beautiful! I shared on Pinterest, you are soooo talented! :)

  14. Donna says:

    Wow, years ago I did this with my Girl Scouts but I must say I didn’t think things through as well as you did. We used empty baby food jars, fake snow and plain water. I wanted and prayed only for them to last two weeks and then toss. I succeeded but barely. And the jars were so small I had to do a field trip with the girls to a doll house miniatures shop; an experience I never want to try again. But the girls all had fun and the moms all very graciously oohed and aahed over the cheesy little creations. I want your globes. They look real and magical and gold sparkles are as close as I want to get to snow. I’m making these for all my grandkids if I live that long. I have nine with one on the way.

  15. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    When I saw the first picture..I thought they were frozen balls of ice…then I realized that they are sitting in your living room…very clever!

  16. Mary W says:

    WOW – Great gift. I think gluing a clear frame with picture of grandkids/pets inside would be really cool. Wonder how to get a face picture of one of my little angels onto the droppy eyed plastic one, would work. Even think your diorama’s with old truck would look wonderful. I just love your blog!

  17. Luisa Allwood says:

    Hi, I’m from New Zealand and found your webpage, I love your sense of humour and practicalness. Thank you.

  18. SusanR says:

    This is a great idea! I already have a couple of the little light strings. Now I just have to find some large clear ornaments. Walmart, here I come! Thanks!

  19. brenda says:

    your brilliance knows no bounds….Seriously!

  20. Bols says:

    I planned to order the same lights about a week ago (for a different project) but after I read the negative reviews I changed my mind. ALWAYS read the negative reviews, the positive ones are not that important. It seems that the failure rate of the lights (regardless of which component failed) is fairly high and some reviews also said that they were not waterproof at all.

  21. Gretchen Sexton says:

    FANTASTIC! I think I’ll do these for my craft exchange…next year though. Help me to remember, OK? (I crack myself up!) Seriously, I will do these.

  22. BethH says:

    Strange question, although because you GET IT, it probably won’t seem strange to you Karen, but because I live in an incredibly rural area, seriously, we don’t even have a mailman, I have to order EVERYTHING. So the question is, what are the dimensions of the battery pack? You know, because I have to plan everything out before ordering, and I want to use a certain item for the base and want to make sure the battery pack will fit in it and Amazon won’t tell me.

  23. Edith says:

    Hi Karen,

    What a clever idea! This will be all over Pinterest! ?

  24. Barb says:

    Just…freaking…AWESOME!!!

  25. Rachel says:

    I honestly had plans to make this, actually about 6 to place down my runner for Christmas Day dinner as candles tend to topple over with all the food. I had leftover clear balls from my ponche de creme holders and dozen of those immersible lights from Halloween diy lanterns and even though I live in the West Indies, I think I’ll use faux glitter poinsettias instead. What had me worried was the idea of using a different base like repurposing some Christmas mugs or glazed pot instead. But seeing it done properly this way makes it seem more do-able for me and I would figure out the base when I get to that step. Thank you very much Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Rachel! Yes, do it. You really can use almost anything for a base, and the base doesn’t have to be permanent. Just drop it into whatever you want and see what looks best. ~ karen!

      • Rachel says:

        Yes, I will for sure. By the way, I will be using light sets that worked great for Halloween, Rtgs micro LED silver wire string lights that are submersible but not the battery pack. Those sets are flatter and almost unnoticeable because they use those lithium CR2032 coin size batteries that I find lasts longer than AA batteries and I buy extra in bulk at jewelry stores. They (the lights) come in different colors if you want to change the look up a bit. They too are available on Amazon for a dollar more. Check em out and see. Have a great night!

  26. Maureen Locke says:

    What a great idea… my granddaughter collects snow globes. I wonder how I could personalize it for her….. she’s a ballet dancer. I wonder if there’s any way a picture could be treated to be in a water globe. Can you think of any way Karen?? Laminate perhaps??

    • Karen says:

      Hi Maureen. You can buy picture insert snow globes on Amazon or even in some grocery stores (Fortinos and Loblaws). It’s a premade snow that you just slide a photo into. So no need to scrounge around and make one at all. :) (although if you make one you could insert a plastic ballerina figurine) ~ karen!

      • Maureen Locke says:

        Thanks Karen, I have seen the picture insert ones but the ones I’ve seen have been a bit…. um, shall I say… tacky. I’ll have a look online to see if there’s a nicer quality one. I just wanted to make one for her and wanted to put her picture in it. I’ll have to put my thinking cap on and see what I can come up with. Thanks for the suggestions. :)

        • SusanR says:

          A clear plastic insert, like for a wallet, might be something that could be used. It would likely need to be tested for being waterproof, and cut down. If you have a food bag sealer, after inserting the photo into it, the open end could then be sealed. Maybe even a Ziplock bag could be used, cut down and sealed on all sides after the photo is inserted. If it’s all small enough, it would likely then be able to be rolled up to insert into the ball. If you have a laminator, one of the pouches or luggage tag blanks could be used. They’re very flexible, also, and with a good seal should be waterproof. And there are also available stick-on clear laminate sheets. Of those ideas, I’d think the stick on would be least likely to hold up over time. Eventually the water would cause the adhesive to fail, whereas the other methods are heat sealed.

        • Maureen Locke says:

          Thanks SusanR… some great ideas there. Yes I have a sealer and I do have access to a laminater. :)

        • Allison says:

          Maureen, you could try encasing the photo in resin to make it water proof. The challenge will be making the photo the right size to push through the opening since the resin will make the photo unflexible.

        • Maureen Locke says:

          Allison, not sure how I’d do that but thanks for the suggestion. I’m open to any/all suggestions. :)

  27. Denise Hosner says:

    Oh, I love these! But, I have a question..does the glycerin make the water cloudy or is it just my phone?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Denise. The glycerine doesn’t make the water cloudy if you just use a couple of drops. The water can look a bit cloudy from excessive sparkles, etc. The one snow globe did end up looking a bit cloudy but it looks much worse in the photos for some reason. ~ karen!

  28. Brook says:

    In this case, “they” are right. I once used tap water for a snow globe because I was too lazy to go to the store in the cold, and the figurine was dripping mold like the Creature from the Black Lagoon within a couple of months.

    Too bad, because it had been beautiful to start with and ended up as a, “Remember when you gave me…?” Distilled water is the way to go!

    • billy sharpstick says:

      I suspect that even distilled water could be contaminated by airborne spores or germs as it’s being poured. They’re everywhere. Probably some present in the globe or on the ornaments. I think that in time, the globe would get algae or that mysterious biofilm slime that our cat water dishes have in them(maybe that’s just cat spit?).
      A couple drops of bleach or colloidal silver if you have it might help. (I use CS to keep my kitchen sponges from smelling bad.)

  29. Jenny W says:

    Love Them!

  30. TucsonPatty says:

    I love love love this! Another doodad to make for Christmas is always on my list.

  31. Robert says:

    I have to say that a snow globe able to beacon UFOS sounds like a very cool DIY, why didn’t you do it?

  32. Dagmar says:

    ” She salted me” what an amazing line Karen !

  33. Violet Rose says:

    They is gorgeous! You are very crafty ;)

  34. You should probably get the Order of Canada for this. Although I’m not a craft-y person (crafty, yes; craft-y, no) this looks like something I would actually do.

    Thank you!

    • Karen says:

      Hey Madeleine! They’re fun to make. Just remember, silicone, silicone, then more silicone, lol. I have all of mine together on a silver tray in my living room coffee table right now (which you’ll see when I put up my Christmas decorating post next Monday. ) ~ karen!

  35. Paula says:

    Thank you that works. They are 33′? How many battery packs did you get?

    • Karen says:

      Sorry Paula. That’s for the big long string lights. You can get the battery operated ones that I used for the globes at either your local garden centre, home improvement store, or Loblaws if you have one around you. They’re everywhere in fact. :) ~ karen!

      • Paula says:

        Thanks Karen. If I have time, I will attempt this; with the mild fall I am still gardening and making new raised beds for next season :)

  36. Paula says:

    The starry string light link doesn’t work :(

    • Karen says:

      Oh! That’s because you’re in Canada Paula. I should have mentioned that. The string lights from Amazon in Canada were $40! So I didn’t even bother linking to them. But now they’re only $8.50 with free shipping! So I am going to link to them now. ~ karen!

  37. You made your own snow globe! Seriously, Karen…is there anything you can’t do?

    • Karen says:

      Well I took a dumpling making course with a friend and I could barely fold a dumpling. So there’s that. Plus I struggle with a cowlick at my temple. Which probably doesn’t seem like that big of a deal for someone with an afro come to think of it. ~ karen!

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