Snowy Day Snow Globes: A Great Way to Use Your School Portrait

Empty snow globe

Somehow, after sharing your charming school portraits with your family and friends, you find that you still have a small stack of unused preciousness staring up at you from your cluttered kitchen table. What to do, what to do?


Why, get crafty, of course! Remember the magic of staring into a pastoral snow globe, admiring the miniature figures resting peacefully on a bed of sparkling snow? Surely you at least remember the unadulterated joy of shaking things up. Of wreaking a little chaos on that perfect world? So go on, let’s make a homemade snow globe!


In this age of reuse and recycle, upcycling empty glass jars into one-of-a-kind snow globes starring your child is the way to go.


What You’ll Need: Ingredients for a Perfect Photo Globe

Glass Jars and Matching Lids
Packing Tape (or, ideally, access to a laminator)
Hot Glue Gun
Hot Glue Sticks
Olive Oil (or, ideally, glycerine)


Making it Happen: Turning Your Portraits into Wonderlands

Don’t let those memories gather dust, get snipping! Your first order of business is deciding if you’d like your child’s entire photograph to be tucked into your jar or if you’d like to draw all eyes to that cute face. If you opt to ditch the background, carefully snip it away.


If you’re lucky enough to have access to a laminator, get cooking! (Hint: give your local library or your child’s school a call. There’s a good chance they’ll help you out.) If you’re like most of us, though, you’re ready to go right now, even without a laminator! No worries, just place a piece of tape, sticky side up, on a flat surface. Use two pieces for larger images, overlapping the edges slightly. Then, gently lower your child’s picture onto the adhesive and then carefully smooth additional tape over the image. Trim the edges to size.

Clean and Assemble: Creating Your Unique Snow Globe


Wash your jars and lids carefully. To be safe, microwave the cleaned jars for a minute or two to sterilize them. Now, place your carefully-taped or laminated portrait upside down, into your clean jar. (Remember, what is down, will be up. The base of your jar will become the top of your snow globe.) Here’s the fun part: take a look around your house. Let your eyes take in the random kid clutter. Surely you’ll spy a party favor or two, a miniature reindeer, a tiny Olaf, or the rock your child acquired on the way home from school yesterday. Heat up that glue gun, carefully dab a few dots of glue on the found object and place them, upside down, on the floor of the jar.


Voila! Your child is starring in his or her very own snowy day fantasy.


Filling Your Snow Globe: Oil or Glycerin and Glitter, Oh My!

If you’re doing this on the spur of the moment, and your shelves aren’t stocked with glycerin, you can fill your jars with olive oil. The vintage look is completely unique, but if you’re making more than one snow globe, it gets pricey. If you have a little time to go shopping, glycerine is inexpensive and can be found in the pharmacy section. Go for it, because it’s the best thing to put your glitter into a snowy-day swirl. Fill the jars with a 3:1 water-to-glycerin ratio, leaving about ½ inch at the top of the jar. Dump in at least 1-2 teaspoons of glitter. Don’t be stingy. It won’t get all over your floors.


Carefully dot a few dabs of hot glue onto the rim of your jar and screw the lids onto your masterpiece. If you’re using canning jars with rings and lids, go a little nuts with the glue and seal the lids into the rings and run a circle of glue under the ring for additional leak protection.


Shake. Settle. Repeat.