How to make a faux DIY terrarium

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How to make a faux DIY terrarium cheap.  This fast project is a knock-off of the metal shape house terrariums popping everywhere.  Make one today in 30 minutes for a couple of dollars. 

DIY Terrariums

Or make two!

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This project came in the middle of the night.  Getting a DIY project idea rolling around in my head puts me right back to sleep. 

Does that happen to you?

Shop for supplies


I made two houses.  The instructions are for one house.  So, rinse and repeat as much as you wish. 

supplies diy terrarium

The basic idea is to slide pipe cleaners into drinking straws using the pipe cleaners to hold the house together.

Are you thinking about the three little pigs right now?

Cutting the pieces

Straws cut

Cut 8 straws to 6 inches.  Leave five straws the full length.  The straws I ordered on Amazon are 7 3/4 inches long.  Straws cut easily with scissors. 

Chenille stem pipe cleaners

Cut three the pipe cleaners in half.  Cut four pipe cleaning into 3-inches pieces.  Leave 5 pipe cleaners at 12-inches long.   The pipe cleaners I bought on Amazon are 12-inches long.  I did notice pipe cleaners are now called chenille stems. 

Making Straws Attachable

pipecleaners in straws

Insert one pipe cleaner into four 7 3/4 inch straws.  Insert two in the other 7 3/4 inch straw.  The four straw made the length of the house.  The other is the top ridge of the roof. 



Made rectangle by sliding the extra pipe cleaner on each end into smaller straws.  I added a drop of craft glue into the straw to hold pieces together.  But do work quickly so the glue doesn’t dry.  You will add another pipe cleaner in the corners.

2 rectangles

Make another rectangle.  This is the top of the house. 

Making a box

glue inside straw


I added a very small dot of glue inside the straws.  I made a “text” house and did not use glue.  It worked fine.  So you can skip the glue if you wish.  I wanted to keep my DIY terrarium houses around for a while. 

DIY terrarium house of straws

Add two 3-inch pipe cleaners into each corner of one rectangle.  One into the shorter straw and one into the longer straw. 


Add dot of glue

Add a dot of glue in the ends of four 6-inch straws.  This will make the corners of the house.

add top to DIY terrarium

Slide the ends into each corner of the top rectangle. Now you have a box.

The rooftop

ready to add roof

Add half the pipe cleaner into a 6-inch straw.  Slide the other half into another 6-inch straw.  You can bend to form an “A” or gables.  Make another.

Add the roof to the square

Slide another half of a pipe cleaner into the gable straws.  Slide the other end into the 6-inch straw.  This gives more stability when picking up the house. 

straw DIY terrariums

Reshape where needed.  I didn’t notice the whacky side until after taking the photos.  But it’s easy to adjust. 

DIY Terrariums SQ

I plan to use these for centerpieces and in a bookcase vignette. 

DIY Terrariums made with straws

Wish I had a piece of cake to go in this photo!

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Fun and under 30 minutes to create.  I need more of these projects. 

DIY Farmhouse terrrarium

Please note my drinking straw DIY terrarium house does not have glass.

Hope no wolfs come along!

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