Water globes are perfect gifts for just about anyone. They’re so unique when you make them yourself because knowing the person you’re giving it to helps you to create one, especially for their tastes. Have a theme in mind when you go to the craft store to select miniatures for the water globe. The best place to get the globe itself, though, is at a hardware or home improvement store.

Craft stores carry all sorts of glass bowls, but most of them have a flat bottom. For a snow or water globe, you want the type that is perfectly round when turned upside down. A home improvement store has many different types of clear globes that people can buy to place over a porch light or inside the fixture. They come in lots of different sizes but choose one that is clear or only slightly frosted or etched.

The round wooden base can be purchased for under a dollar at a craft store. You can paint it if you want, or leave it the natural shade of wood. Do use a coat of clear lacquer to protect the wood, whether you paint it or not.

Arrange your miniatures on the wooden base, checking to see that the globe will slide, unobstructed, onto the base. The miniatures can be a little crib and booties for a baby, a wintry village for a Christmas present, or a park bench with little sparrows for someone you know who loves birds. The scene is yours to set, so arrange it the way you want. It’s important that the adhesive you choose won’t break down in the water, so don’t select hot glue for this project. Use contact cement or another choice, but read the instructions to make sure that it will hold up in liquids.

After the scene is set, turn globe upside down and sprinkle in glitter or fake snow, then fill the globe with distilled water. Make sure the rim of the globe is completely dry, encircle it with glue and lay the base in the glue. Press down, but not hard enough to break the globe. You can prop the globe up with pillows or towels until dry. When glue has set completely, turn the globe over and decorate the base, if desired.

The base can have any number of decorations or none at all. For a Christmas globe, surround the base in pine branches or garland. A baby’s globe can have little ABC blocks around it, in pink and blue. You can always just tie a pretty ribbon around the base, or use nothing at all. The reason for wrapping something around the base is to make sure that the glue is not noticeable. If it isn’t, there’s no absolute need for decorating the base.

Try making a tiny globe with just a miniature diploma and cap for a graduate, fill the globe with shells and a floating boat for a beach lover, lay a train track and tiny train inside for someone who loves trains, or drop in coins and give it to someone for a paperweight. There are hundreds of ideas for making the globes and the receiver of the gift will be very impressed that you made it yourself.

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