Summer is upon us! Let’s celebrate with a beachy craft. First enjoy collecting shells, driftwood, sand and inspiration on your next trip to the beach. Then let’s put it all together in this cute mini diorama!
Supplies you’ll need:
Round lid with edges. I’m using the cardboard packaging from Brie cheese.
Pencil, scissors and a hole puncher.
Watercolor paper and brush
Watercolor paint – a blue green, turquoise, and brown. You can mix blue and yellow to create the blue green.
Ribbon, fabric, or paper to line the inner and outer rims.
Twine or ribbon (or in my case the handle from a shopping bag)
Glue gun, craft glue, and double sided tape.
1. Trace a circle on your watercolor paper using the lid as your guide.
2. Paint a simple seascape overlapping your circle shape.
Seascape painting tips:
Determine the position of the horizon and mark lightly with pencil.
Starting at the pencil line, paint with the blue green color. (Leave some areas white for breaking waves.) Lighten the blue green by mixing it with water as you move lower, leaving the bottom 1/3 of the circle blank.
If desired – add darker strokes to the ocean for waves.
Paint the bottom of the circle a very light brown (brown mixed with water), leaving a thin gap between the ocean water and the sand.
Using a light blue or turquoise, paint a fade from the top of the circle to the horizon line by adding more water to your blue as you paint.
3. After the painting dries, cut inside the circle. Adjust until the paper fits inside the lid.
4. Tape the painting inside of the lid using double sided tape.
5. Hold up your diorama and with the horizon straight determine what the top is. Poke a hole through the top of the lid or use the hole puncher. (If you are using a plastic lid skip this step. Instead use the glue gun to glue string to the back of your lid.)
6. Glue ribbon around the inner and outer rims, putting seams at the bottom. (You can also paint your lid – I recommend acrylic paint for this.)
7. Thread twine through the hole and knot.
8. Use a glue gun to add all of your beach treasures. Use tacky glue to add sand. Once dry shake off excess sand.
Ribbon, fabric, or paper to line the inner and outer rims
Twine or ribbon (or in my case the handle from a shopping bag)
Glue gun, craft glue, and double sided tape or scrap booking adhesive
1. Trace a circle on your painting using the cardboard as your guide. Cut inside the circle. Adjust until the paper fits inside the cardboard. (Set painting aside.)
2. Poke a hole through the rim or use the hole puncher. The hole will be the top of your diorama.
3. Glue ribbon around the inner and outer rims, putting seams at the bottom.
4. Thread twine through the hole and knot.
5. Tape painting to the inside of the circle. Pay attention to the “top” (the hole) when lining up the horizon of your painting. Make sure to tape down all the edges.
6. Use glue gun to add all of your beach treasures.
7. Use glue gun to secure shell to the knot. (See image below.)
8. Add craft glue in between shells and rocks. Pour generous amount of sand on top.
9. Add craft glue to bottom of the shell (on the knot) and pour sand onto glue.
10. Wait until fully dry and gently shake off excess sand.
Extra – make a little sign with the name of your special beach to add to your beach diorama. Inspired by this post? Let me know what you make! Tag me on Instagram @eileenmckenna
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I was feeling guilty that I never finished a Christmas diorama, as I promised you. Posting one today or tomorrow seemed too late. But, as I cleaned up all the scraps of wrapping paper, boxes, and ribbons, I realized today is the perfect day to finish a Christmas diorama and use some of those leftovers. The rush of shopping, baking, and wrapping is over. Today is a lazy day – the perfect day to work on a project and those leftovers had inspired me. In my last diorama post, I went over all the problems I was having with my diorama. The main thing I realized was that I was thinking too literally. This time I didn’t fuss about a realistic floor – I just created and I’m so happy with the results! I hope you had a very Merry Christmas!
I haven’t forgotten about my Christmas diorama project. I’m learning that (like anything worth doing) it isn’t a quick, easy thing.
I’m using a tea box and realizing I need to cover every side – inside and out.
Unfortunately the craft tape thingy isn’t strong enough and is showing through the vellum. I’m also realizing that all the corners need to be tight or it looks sloppy. Or I need to trim all the corners and edges in garland. And my watercolor background and sides buckled a bit and aren’t flat.
I started with a “floor” that I tried to mimic real wood. Then I realized the carolers were outside, so I created a cobble stone look.
I think the depth of my box is too large for the pieces I have. I need to add more elements to it or cut the box.
I often think very literally. I created a sky and cobble stone floor for the carolers. Maybe I should try to change my thinking and use Christmas patterns for the inside sides or background.
It’s a work in progress. I’m hoping to have a finished diorama to show you by Christmas Eve!
I’ve wanted to work on a diorama for awhile now. I haven’t worked on one since the kids made shoebox sized ones for school. Even then it wasn’t my project and they wouldn’t let me take over! I’ve been pinning Christmas diorama projects on my board like crazy lately. When I remembered the illustrations in my dad’s old Christmas music book, I thought they would be perfect! I could plan my dioramas around them. Imagine – vintage illustrations, right at my fingertips. How lucky and out of character. We are not the family that ends up on Antique Roadshow! We didn’t even have an attic!
I looked through each illustration and figured out how I could create a diorama around it. Then I wrote a list of all the things I need. I measured my box to know the sizes. I want the dioramas to have one 2D element (where the illustration is brought forward from the background) and one 3D element – a miniature tree for example. I’ve planned on five dioramas, but we’ll see! I’m an ambitious planner.