Jun 10, 2012

DIY Eggshell Zen Garden, perfect for Father's Day

For Mother's Day this year, I shared my DIY eggshell bouquets with you, pointing out the symbolism of the egg: new life, birth, yadda, yadda, yadda. As we all know, there would be no baby chick if not for the rooster, so it seems only fitting to honor fathers similarly.
My older daughter and husband.
In contemplating an appropriate gift for my husband from my daughters for Father's Day, I called on one of my über creative friends, Kristin Weismiller, to brainstorm a unique, eggshell craft idea. Kristin is not only creative, she too is a bargain hunter. Most of the supplies needed for this project can be found at a dollar store!  It was agreed, we would each go to work on our own versions and meet back here with the results.

The two basic versions involve either a Zen garden kit store or a picture frame with wine drip stoppers. All of which are generally available at any dollar store.

Materials needed (depending on design choices):
Empty eggshells with a drainage hole in the bottom
acrylic craft paint (optional)
cactus potting soil
wine drip stoppers or napkin rings & glue gun
picture frame or dollar store zen garden kit
black and white photo collage of the kids or sand
potted miniature cactus or succulents
Dremel rotary tool with diamond wheel bit (optional) and plastic Easter egg

Begin with cracked eggshells or blown egg shells.
 If using a Dremel, attach a diamond cutting wheel. Place Easter egg half on top of the narrow end of a blown egg and carefully cut around the eggshell.
I would have done the cutting myself but my husband is not as adept
at photography as he is with power tools. :o
 I used a picture frame in order to personalize the project with a collage of my daughters behind the glass (and because I couldn't find the Zen garden kit at my dollar store).
All the hardware was removed from the frame.
I traced the frame backing onto the collage, cut it out and inserted it behind the glass. 

  I removed the felt lining from the fifty cent wine bottle drip stoppers
and hot-glued them to the frame's glass.

My 7 year old daughter took this photo. Maybe I'll have her give my husband a few photography tips.
My daughter then filled the eggshells 2/3 full with cactus potting soil, added a small cactus plant or succulent, topped with soil and set in the rings.

Add a few pea stones to the top of the soil.

For an easier, kid-friendly version, skip the photo collage and simply add sand on top of the frame.
Align some rocks in a square to provide stability for the egg(s).
 Add eggshell potted plant and serve voilà!
 My daughter kicked up her presentation with a few more pea stones harvested from our landscaping.

 The following are Kristin's adorable creations.
She used pre-packaged, dollar store Zen garden kits as her bases.
She painted the outside of the eggshells, then used Thompson's waterproofer on the inside, allowing them to dry before potting.
The eggshells will deteriorate over time if waterproofing is not used but our Eggshell Zen Gardens don't have a long life expectancy, knowing my four year old.
"I got the terracotta pots at the dollar store and then painted them with craft paint and then used Mod Podge Gloss to make them shiny. I stuck them in a tea light holder I never use anymore." Kristin Weismiller
Kristin used tea light holders (also from a dollar store) to prop her
eggs up in the base. 
Happy Father's Day to my husband, his father and his brother (shown) who are happy to get
their feet wet with the kids. 


  1. I think you did a spectacular job! Looks great!

    1. Thank you Chicken Jane. (I'm going to assume that's your given name b/c I like it. LOL!)

  2. I have seen a few eggshell seed starting pots but never ones which are as cute as these here. I think they are quite smashing. As a mum, I think I will like it better than my hubby will. But it's always the thought and the effort that matter most.

  3. Angi Schneider11/14/12, 9:50 PM

    What great projects!  Thanks so much for sharing at Handmade Christmas 2012. 
    Just so you know, for some reason your link wasn't working so I relinked it up. 

  4. TheChickenChick11/15/12, 12:04 AM

    Thanks a million for fixing the link, Angi!

  5. Sarah Eller4/15/13, 2:26 PM

    Thank you so much for taking all that time to share this. Well done! I just love what your dd did. :) My boys will be so tickled to take on this project as our chickens and gardening is our life. :) You are deeply apriceated! We absorb so much from your articles. It's wonderful have have access to so great knowledge, experience, and trustworthy info. :)

  6. TheChickenChick4/16/13, 12:55 AM

    Thank you, Sarah. ♥

  7. LaDonna Martin7/13/13, 8:42 AM

    Thanks so much for all the giveaways. Hope to win!!

  8. Crochet Hooks6/1/14, 7:45 PM

    too cute! I want a couple now :)