It’s said that eskimos have over a hundred different words for snow, to capture the manifold ways it arrives; drifting snow, falling snow, powdery snow – a word for each and every one. Such claims may be the stuff of mythology, but it somehow captures the magic of snowfall and fits with the science of every single snowflake being unique.  We’ve had no real snow this season, despite Harry’s feverish anticipation and enough cold snaps to make even the Inuit consider double-glazing.  Still, we are nothing if not self-starters, so have decided to make our own snow for Christmas.

winter snowscapes

I’ved used glass cloches to cover simple white dining plates and scattered with faux snow and some Christmassy miniature trees from the local garden centre to create this snowscape which will adorn our Christmas table.  I glued little star-shaped buttons to the top of each tree for a splash of bright festive colour.  Harry saw me make this one (above) and was intrigued, but hasn’t yet seen the others, for which I recruited some of his favourite toys… (I’ve taken the glass covers off to photo these, but details of what I’m using are below)

Buzz Lightyear has his perennial expression of mild confusion as he struggles with these trees and directions to the North Pole…

snowglobe buzz

Peppa Pig and friend sing carols around the village tree whilst trying not to fall in this mirror-glass pond..

snowglobe peppa

And finally a bright red London bus transports a Christmas tree on its top deck..

snowglobe bus

To cover these I’ve used; a glass cake dome, a clear dessert bowl and (for the miniature London bus and tree) an upturned wine glass.  They can be constructed and taken apart in minutes so make for a good table decoration – and one which can be played with as well as just admired!

We’ve also created our own snowy landscape inside by threading a variety of different white pompoms onto lengths of cotton and tying them onto a slim branch; at the moment it decorates the (disused) playroom fireplace but these also look beautiful strung over windows and doorways.  I measured a length of cotton, threaded it with a needle and then pushed the needle through the pompoms, before spacing them out at intervals and hanging.  Harry chose the pompoms and acted as chief helper; school-age kids can do this all themselves using a thick darning needle with not too sharp a point.  If you find your pompoms slide together, just knot the thread at intervals and the pompoms will ‘sit’ on the knots and stay in place.

snow curtain

snow twig curtain

And finally to our twist on snow globes; I’ve used these miniature bottles (also great for messages-in-a-bottle for Valentines or pirate games), and filled each with a teaspoon of white glitter, water and just a dash of glycerin to top up.  Shake vigorously to disperse all the glycerin and glitter, and then add a little tag (and a bell, if you have them).  I’ll be using them as part of my festive place-settings, but they’d also make beautiful stocking-fillers if places in a tiny box and nestled in shredded tissue, or even looped with cord for a necklace (these bottles really are tiny; a necklace would obviously be a little less practical if you’re using actual milk bottles).

If you’re anticipating particularly vigorous shaking, I’d suggest glueing the cork in place to avoid the kind of dramatic glitter-in-eye-and-ruined-silk-blouse moments that will turn into great anecdotes in the years to come but may test a friendship in the immediate short-term..

DIY snowglobes

DIY snowglobe in motion

So, a handful of snowy crafts with just the right amount of mess and fun.  Hopefully they’ll keep us going until the real thing arrives…

harry in the snow