How adorable is this Fun DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea?! Here’s how to make a DIY Shallow Planter Tray.
I know, I know. I just built my Fairy Herb Garden a few months ago and I loved that too. But I just couldn’t resist building this Fun Vintage DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea. While writing up my directions for the fairy herb garden, I found this vintage camper on Amazon and recommended it as a cute option for the tray.
After spotting a cute vintage camper at Hobby Lobby, I just had to try out my DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea. This whole tray can be made in less than an hour. I went with succulents (most of them really convincing fake succulents). But, you can do this with any indoor plants you’d like. 🙂
Since succulents remind me of the rocky landscaping in the Southwest and campers remind me of, well camping, I decided to go with a camping in the Southwest of the USA theme. To give the tray more visual appeal, I mixed a sheet of moss with pea gravel to make the terrain. Then I added some fake succulents with a little pot of real ones. I also grabbed an aloe to give the tray a little height and because aloe’s are just awesome.
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Disclaimer: Make sure to always read the directions for any products or tools you use while building. Always check for square and double-check those measurements too. Read the full disclaimer.
What you’ll need for this Fun Vintage DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea
- 1 tray deep enough for your plants and decorative items, like this galvanized plant tray
- A vintage truck or this vintage camper bird house would be adorable or maybe a vintage VW Van or old red schoolhouse
- 1 set of wire LED mini lights (between 7 and 12 feet is best for this project)
- A handful of succulents, fake or real
- Heavy Duty garbage bag or other thick plastic sheet
- 1 dowel cut into 4 – 8″ sections
- 4 eye hooks
- Rocks to line bottom of tray
- Potting soil
- Pea gravel and a sheet of moss
- Decorative items (rocks, wood discs, etc.)
Here’s a quick look at how to make your own DIY Indoor Fairy Garden on my YouTube Channel.
Directions for this Fun Vintage DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea
Quick Note: Some of these pictures are from the DIY Fairy Garden post, but the set up is exactly the same. I just swapped out the plants and changed the design above the soil. Just ignore the herbs in the pictures below. 😉
Cut your heavy-duty garbage bag so that 6 inches or so hangs over all 4 sides. Leaving extra long sides now makes it easier to fill the tray without worrying about the plastic shifting. Lay the plastic on top of the tray and push it flat along the bottom and into each corner. You will have extra material sticking up on the edges for now.
Put a light layer of gravel along the bottom of the tray. Add a couple of inches of the best soil for the type of plants you’ve chosen. Make sure the tray has enough soil to be firm all across the tray and around the plants. Add the plants and cover the soil in a light layer of pea gravel and moss to suit your design.
Trim away the extra plastic along the edges of the tray. Screw an eye hook in one end of each of the 4 dowel sections. Stick a dowel in each corner of the tray, eye hook end up. I also glued my dowels into the corners, using regular Elmer’s glue.
Start the lighting by hiding the battery pack for the lights behind the tray or between the liner and tray. Make sure to never let the battery pack get wet, it is not waterproof. The wire and the lights on most of these mini LED lights are waterproof though, be sure to double-check the instructions included with yours.
Wind the wire LED mini light around each dowel and through the eye hook to secure the wire in place. Depending on the length of your wire, you may need to do 1 or more dowels twice. Just be sure to always start and end each dowel with the eye hook to make it look more like the lights of a little bird village. 🙂
I left the front of my tray free of lights. I didn’t want to obstruct the view of the camper and succulents. If you are designing this as a centerpiece, you can always change the layout of the lights so that they are across the center of the tray or even shorten the dowels to keep the lighting along the edge of the tray.
Tips for Indoor Plants to Use in a Shallow Tray
There are lots of plants that work well in shallow planters, like a tray. Just do a quick google search on what you want to use to double check before buying.
Many types of herbs, succulents, indoor ivys, bonsai trees, pothos, and even strawberries will work. BE SURE to pick the right potting mix, sunlight, and drainage for your plants.
Decorating your Fairy Garden
Once the lighting is done, place your vintage camper (more birdhouse campers on Amazon) and other bits of decor inside the tray. You could really have fun with this idea and make it into anything you can imagine.
If your family is into fairies, mice, butterflies, horses, etc., go with that as a theme. You could use gravel to make a dry creek bed. Create little mailboxes from craft wood. Or even use fairy garden decor for your little garden. Have fun with it. I made my wood discs from a branch I found in our yard. I used my miter saw to quickly cut it into slices.
You can find the DIY Herb Fairy Garden version of this project on my site too.
Looking for another fun DIY Project? Check out my popular Pour on Two Canvases video, then head here to see the full DIY Wall Art tutorial and all of the pictures from that pour.
Looking for more cute DIY Decor ideas? Have you tried DIY Acrylic Pour Art? It’s super fun and totally addictive, guys.
And, you might like this popular DIY for faux metal patina finishes. This DIY is so incredibly easy. I even use these paints on old decor and mirrors for a cool new patina metal look.
Feeling inspired? Ready to design your own Fun Vintage DIY Indoor Fairy Garden Idea? Have fun and let me know if you have questions. Or post pictures of your work and tag Abbotts At Home on FB, I’d love to see it!