Make your own action figure terrarium

Guest post by Megan S.

We’ve showed you how to display action figures, and how to make humorous terrariums. Now here’s how you can combine the two!

I love my action figures but I often wish I had a better way to display them rather then gathering dust on a dark shelf. So, when I saw a terrarium a few weeks ago, it hit me: Mini terrariums personalized for each figure would be a perfect and stylish way to show ’em off. Even better, I could easily create each display using items I already have at home and a few key pieces from my local chain craft store.

Intrigued? Here’s how I made my action figure terrarium…

What you’ll need:

One thing before we begin:
A true terrarium is a miniature ecosystem containing living plant matter. Because I’m a klutz and there’s a significant chance I will knock over anything within arms reach and because I don’t know if exposure to water and decaying plant matter will affect action figures, I made a non-working terrarium. If you’d like to learn how to make a true terrarium, check out these instructions on Garden Design.

Now, on with the show!

Step one: thoroughly clean your container. I soaked the mason jar in warm soapy water for a few minutes to loosen the label and then carefully peeled the paper off. I used glass cleaner on the lantern to remove any smears from the inside and outside of the glass.

Step two: Carefully form a layer of stones on the bottom of the container approximately one and a half inches thick. I arranged the stones (a two-pound bag of multi colored stones available from Michael’s in the floral department for $2.49) so a variety of colors would be visible from the outside. It just looks nicer that way.

Step three: Make a base for your figure using the bottle top, stone, and double-sided tape. It the stone doesn’t stay in the top when overturned, use a piece of tape to secure it. Then apply a few layers of double-sided tape to the top and attach to the feet of your figure. If your figure’s feet aren’t flat, roll up a length of tape into a ball and use that to attach it to the bottle top. It will offer more stability.

Step four: cover the bottle top with moss and place the action figure in the container. Be sure to thread a few pieces of the moss (the variety pack is available from Michael’s in the floral department for $6.99) between the figure’s feet so none of the top is visible. Then, carefully position the figure in the container, making sure it looks good from all angles.

Step five: tear of small pieces of moss and position the material around the figure’s base. I used my scissors to tuck the moss between the stones but anything long and thin will do the trick.

Step six: (Optional) If you’re using a mason jar, you may wish to cover the lid so the label doesn’t show. I used a piece of felt I had left over from making Lilly’s Ewok costume and secured it using double-sided tape and embroidery thread. I attached three wooden buttons to the ends of the thread for some added flair.

So, there you have it — an easy, cheap, and stylish way to display your action figures using items you have at home and a few key pieces from a craft store!

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Comments on Make your own action figure terrarium

  1. This is a great idea! It’s so pretty and nerdy at the same time. :3 I don’t have any action figures, but one of my friends has HUNDREDS so I’ll pass this on to her. Thanks for the awesome idea!

  2. What an amazing idea! I have tons of smaller figures, as well as a bunch of glass jars I didn’t know what to do with. I was trying to find a way to display them in a way that tiny hands couldn’t get to them. This is perfect!

    • We’ve emailed the author to see if we can credit the concept to an original source. That said, there’s no need to get shitty about it. If she was inspired by the World of Geekcraft, we’ll update the post with full attribution.

    • Hey guys,

      I didn’t know about the project from World of Greekcraft nor Bonnie Burton’s from her Star Wars Crafting book until after I created and posted it on my site back in March.

      It’s purely a zeitgeist thing. Terrariums are popular. Action figures are popular. A few people are bound to have the same idea of combining the two.

  3. this is GENIUS! i dont really have any action figures, but this makes me want to buy some so that i can make these… thanks for sharing such a fantastic idea x

  4. This is fabulous. I have so many little trinket figurines that I have picked up over the years and cannot seem to let go of. I’m going to find a suitable container for a larger, multi-figurine scene and if it looks good I’ll send some pics in.

  5. How fortuitous…I just brought home my Endor collection from work and they’ve been hanging out on my counter waiting for me to do something with them!

  6. This is a fabulous idea for all kinds of ornaments, I think. I have a collection of knick-knacks that I bought as a child and can’t bring myself to get rid of, despite not being a knick-knack person any more. I think terraria would be a great way of displaying them but in a more modern, clean-looking and easier-to-dust way. Thanks!

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