Hello, y’all! This terrarium is inspired by favorite restaurant in New Orleans Square: Cafe Orleans! You read that right, not Blue Bayou. Cafe Orleans. They have pomme frites, monte cristos, and they used to have the most delicious sausage gumbo! And if you’re lucky you can watch Fantasmic from the outside dining area after dinner.
Originally, I was planning on putting a lot of plants in this terrarium–you’ll see in the supplies photo– but I ended up using just one faux plant. It made things simpler and I think it really worked out.
This projects is a level 3 because we’re going to be painting, HOWEVER!! You can make it as a level 1 by printing out a photo of New Orleans Square!
Here are the supplies:
|Supplies List:||Tools List:|
|For Level 3:|
|Watercolor Paper||Watercolor brushes|
|Pencil, Colored Pencils|
|White Gel Pen|
|For Both Level 3 and 1:||Scissors|
|Small Vase Filler Rocks|
|Black Vase Filler Stones|
|Mini Dining Set|
Painting the Background!
Grab a piece of Watercolor Paper and lay it underneath your terrarium. Outline it with a pencil. Depending on the shape of your terrarium, you might want to do more than two paintings.
Have some references at the ready! I chose to paint the blue building for the inside of my terrarium and the tan building for the backside.
Start lightly sketching out your building with a pencil. Use a ruler to keep things straight and symmetrical.
The blue building has a circular window at the top, columns on the sides, and symmetrical windows so everything you do on one side, you’ll draw the same of the other.
Because the 1st and 2nd level windows line up, I drew guidelines all the way down the front facade.
The tricky part were the rounded shutters on the 1st level’s windows. The highest point of the curve–which is the outside edge–lined up with the highest point of the rounded window. Drawing a horizontal guideline there will help keep everything even.
The railing is simple enough. The 2nd floor is just vertical spindles, the 1st floor is made of X’s.
A box in the middle is for the name of the restaurant. Little drapes flow on the bottom. Erase where needed.
Start off by brushing your paper with water where you want the paint to flow. Add more paint to the places there are shadows like under the trimming, the inside parts next to the columns, and underneath the 2nd floor windows.
Don’t add too much paint and water at once. Let it dry and you can layer up the color for a deeper appearance. Remember, wherever it is wet, the color will flow.
Use different shades of green to create the potted plants on the balconies.
Go in with relevant colored pencils to amp up the detail and deepen shadows. I also painted some blue in the windows (on dry paper) and went in with a grey colored pencil and drew a line on the left and bottom edges of each little window to create some dimension.
Finally, use a white gel pen to clean up the white parts if necessary.
Go ahead and sketch the other facade using another piece of watercolor paper. This one is also symmetrical! Erase where needed.
The corner pieces of the balcony and the railing are left blank because I’ll be drawing in the detail with a colored pencil after everything is dry.
Paint the same way you did earlier. Watercolor is all about many thin layers so take your time! Use colored pencils after it’s dry to define details.
If you’re not up for the painting, you can always print out a photo of your favorite building in New Orleans Square and use that as your background instead!
Cut your watercolor pieces to fit inside the terrarium. You should have one facing outside and one facing inside. I tried gluing my pieces together so they’d lay flush, but it didn’t work that well. The paper was too strong! I’d suggest you try to flatten them out under something heavy before continuing.
Take a handful of Moss and stuff it on the bottom of your terrarium,
Add some smaller Vase Filler rocks and top those with larger black Pebbles.
Cut apart a couple Magnolia flowers from their stem and stick them into the pebbles.
Lastly, pop in your Miniature Table and Chairs.
You can glue the dining pieces to some pebbles if you want more stability. They can end up toppled over otherwise. But, that’s it!!
You Made It!
Amazing job, everyone! I would love to see what kind of terrariums you guys came up with. Each can be so unique especially with the variety of terrariums out there. I really liked this house shape from Michaels. It sparked the idea in the first place! New Orleans Square is my favorite land in Disneyland and I just love the atmosphere and delicious food of Cafe Orleans. I hope you enjoyed this project!
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