Bug Terrarium

Level: Easy

Get Arty Artist, Ally, makes a home for her paper painted bugs.

For a PDF version of this project, click here.

What you need:

  • Reeves water colour paper
  • Celco scissors
  • Water
  • Reeves paint
  • Liquitex Ink (choose colours you want the beetles to be)
  • Jasart Paint brushes
  • Posca paint marker (black)
  • Pencil
  • Glass cloche, which is a bit like an upside down jar
  • Moss
  • Jasart hot Glue Gun
  • Half Sphere foam ball or block
  • Florist wire
  • Double sided tape
  • Liquitex spray paint
  • Protective wear for spray painting

What you do:

  1. This first step is to spray paint the bottom of your cloche, it can be any colour you like. Make sure you have an adult, using protective gear and in a well ventilated area when spray painting. 
  2. Put some newspaper over your area so when you spray paint the base, the paint doesn’t go on anything it shouldn’t. Put the base in the middle and spray away. Once that is done, leave it to the side to dry.
  3. Once the cloche is dry, the next step is to take the hot glue gun, and squeeze a bit of glue into the bottom of the foam ball, and then stick the ball onto the base of the cloche.
    Tip: The reason we are sticking the foam ball in, is to create a little hill inside the cloche, which we will late cover with moss and beetles of course. 
  4. Now my next step is to paint small sections of water colour paint on a large piece of paper. These sections will turn into our beetles. So grab your paint and paintbrushes and paint a bunch of sections. I am going to make 7 bugs so l will paint 7 different sections, and then when I am finished I will leave the sections to dry.
  5. Once the sections are dry , grab a pencil and draw an outline of the bug. Once you're happy with the shape, go over it with black marker and fill in any details (spots, eyes, wings)
    Tip: I haven't drawn any legs because they are too fiddly to cut out and I can spend more time on the colourful shells
  6. Next, we are going to grab the scissors and cut our beetle shapes out.
  7. Next step is to take the florist wire and make a loop at the top of each beetle cut out.
    Tip: I am going to put one per bug but if you like you can put 2 holes in each one, its up to you.
  8. Now we are going to use the double sided tape to secure the bugs onto the wire loops.
  9. OK, now you will want to make more than one of each to let's get to it
  10. Now its time to position when you want the bugs on your centrepiece inside the cloche.
    Tip: Make sure your wire isn’t longer than the cloche, because the bugs have to fit inside with the lid on.
  11. Now stick one end of the florist wire into the foam ball, so your beetle should be sturdy and still floating in the air.
    SAFETY: Hot glue gun needs adult supervision.
  12. Next step is to grab your moss and cover the foam ball with it, carefully stretching the moss between the wires holding the beetles. Grab the hot glue gun and use this to secure the moss into place on the ball.
  13. Now, place the glass case over your cloche base and there you go! Your very own Bug Terrarium.


Products used in this project

Celco Scissors

NOW $4.25


Reeves Acrylic Paint

FROM $5.20


Liquitex Acrylic Ink

FROM $12.20


Jasart 12 Piece Short Handle Brush Tube

NOW $26.35


Posca Marker

FROM $4.55


Jasart Glue Gun & Sticks

FROM $5.00


Liquitex Professional Spray Paint

FROM $20.45