I wanted to share a really simple craft idea to do with the kids that has a big wow factor.
Fairy Gardens are such a whimsical addition to your outdoor space, they spark imagination and creativity in kids. The idea of a fairy garden is that you add little plants, structures and flowers to create a magical place where fairies can come and bring good luck and blessings to your home.
Last year my little girl was taken with the idea of tea parties and fairy gardens and playing outdoors and she actually had a fairy garden themed birthday party. I created an indoor fairy garden to use as the centerpiece for the party that turned out really cute. We still have the garden and I think it would be really fun for on top of a dresser or on a patio in a smaller space. A fairy garden doesn’t have to be just for bright, sunny garden spaces outdoors.
So here is the first idea to create your own fairy garden- this one is for outdoor spaces. We live in California and have fairly mild and warm weather for most of spring and summer and fall so our garden will be outdoors for several months and then once the rain and wind starts up in early winter, I’ll just pack it up.
You can start with any tray or container you might have. I used a large wine barrel planter we have had for a few years and filled it with fresh soil. A serving tray would work, a galvanized bucket, a saucer from the bottom of a planter or really any container you might have available. This is a great time to really get creative with any fun little things that might work that you have on hand. Pinecones, rocks, shells, plants, old tea cups, artificial flowers, marbles, glass rocks… whatever. I already had a few supplies left from Maya’s birthday last year and I started with:
Some artificial flowers, a bag of moss, moss covered rocks, stones, tiny shells and a I had a few miniatures from the party last year- little fairies, a tiny birdhouse and my favorite is this cute ladybug tire swing.
You can find items perfect for this project in the garden supply centers at craft stores or the Dollar Store or some craft stores have large sections of fairy garden supplies in late winter/early Spring. You might also look for the dollhouse items that can be found in some craft stores year round. Many of those items might not work for outdoor but I found some darling little mini terra cotta pots that were perfect. I also used an unfinished birdhouse from Joann’s that was really inexpensive and we painted it blue, added another coat of pearly white on top and painted a simple door on the front and hot glued on some moss.
Next I picked up some flowers from Home Depot and randomly planted those throughout the space. You might choose some taller plants and smaller flowers or succulents or whatever will work for the light and space you have available in your garden.
It is important to roughly lay out your fairy garden design before you get started actually planting. I used a stick to draw out in the dirt where the house would go, the path and then filled in the plants around those spaces.
I really wanted the kids to be involved as much as possible so we emptied out the bag of stones (from the garden department at Joann’s) and they painted fun designs- little rainbows, sunshine, ladybugs and so on. My 8 year old did a little beach scene on one of the rocks and my 6 year old painted a little rainbow that we used as a welcome mat for one of the fairy houses.
Next we started placing items. I hadn’t found a fairy house yet and I knew I wanted that to be the focal point of the garden so we plopped a pot in as a placeholder and went ahead and added the items we did have.
I made a little garden path from some crushed up seashells that look like little stones and then the girls started adding in the accessories where they wanted them. Typically you don’t actually use little fairies in a fairy garden but again we had a few of these little ceramic fairies on hand from last year’s birthday party and they really look so pretty in the garden.
Here is the finished product:
And one last little thing you can add to really make your fairy garden extra magical- fairy lights! You can find these in almost every large home goods store (Pier 1, Target, World Market etc.. or grab them online here) I absolutely love these little battery operated twinkle lights and I use them all the time. (See how I used them in mason jars for outdoor entertaining here.)
I didn’t make these a permanent part of the garden but I will just twist these around the circle of the planter when we are swimming or playing or eating outside this spring and summer.
And if you are interested in making an indoor only version of the fairy garden, here is the centerpiece I made last year. This is a saucer from a planter that I picked up at Home Depot and I just added stones, faux moss, the rocks you see pictured at the top of the post, and other little elements and I think it turned out really cute.
And one last option! Here is a tabletop version of a fairy garden that is so cute and I included a little video so you can see how it all came together:
And the video:
Now it is your turn! If you decide to make a fairy garden this year please come back and let me know how it turns out! I’d love to see what creative ideas you come up with!
And on a personal note I will say this is totally worth the time and craft supply investment- at least for us. It looks so pretty outside and my girls just lit up when they started this project. I think turning this into a real garden would be so simple and fun- just a few whimsical elements and add herbs or strawberries instead to a small planter box. It could be very functional and really charming.
Here are a few items that might come in handy for your garden:
And a few other projects you might enjoy:
How to Make Bumblebee Cupcakes (so cute for a garden party!)