how-to,  Photography

Fairy Gardens & Tea Parties

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Last month, I had the opportunity to commission a centerpiece and table setting for a Ladies Tea. The event, as well as an auction that took place after the tea, raised money for scholarships to a local college. The beautiful dishes for the table had butterflies and flowers and were very delicate. When I saw them, my vision for the centerpiece immediately went to creating a fairy garden!

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This was my first attempt at making a fairy garden so of course, several hours of Pinterest-ing happened beforehand to get some inspiration. One day, when I have a yard and a porch and an actual vegetable garden, I’ll set up this sweet little raised bed and in one corner there will be a true fairy garden…perhaps even with a miniature garden for the fairy? Seriously, just start looking up fairy gardens and you will have hours of material, from turning a tree into a magical fort to using broken pots as the base for your pixie dusted abode.

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After all the Pinterest hunting, I could’ve taken a couple of different routes. Next time, I’m going to head to a salvage warehouse and repurpose. This time, I went with my loyal friend…Hobby Lobby. After about an hour walking around the store and picking up the flowers and succulents, I saw this spool and the whole thing clicked. Inspiration is a funny, beautiful thing.

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I started by measuring and cutting the moss for the ground, both on the top of the spool and around the bottom. From there, I just began experimenting with the different items…rocks, moss, flowers, succulents and leaves, a mini flower pot, and a few other “mini” items.

At the end of the evening, the garden looked like the above photo. My brain was tired and I felt good about where it was headed, but felt like something wasn’t quite right. I couldn’t figure out what to put inside the teacup on the top and there was no door on the front. The best thing to do when that happens is just to let it rest and come back.

The next day, I ended up adding a bit more moss, an awning made of leaves, a couple of homemade mini wooden stools, a door made of sticks, and a miniature “Welcome” sign.

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This may not sound helpful for a DIY but projects like this truly do just take trial and error. About halfway through the project, I started to ask myself, “If I were a woodland fairy, how would I build my house?” and that helped a lot. Fairy Gardens are supposed to spur imagination and transport you into another world filled with little wings, polka dot mushrooms, and mossy pillows.

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Serving the ladies and having a hand in this special event was quite a treat. And it was really fun to watch the table setting come together that morning. I wanted the delicate dishes to be balanced out by the wood chargers and burlap take-away bags. The butterfly napkin rings coordinated with the color of the center plate as well as the teacups. Finally, nothing tops off a tea table-scape like a little lace.

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