This year Conor and I decided to start giving gifts as a couple and I’m not going to lie, I felt like it was a little bit of a challenge. I didn’t want to buy people just anything, like I have done so year after year in the past. I decided that I wanted to really work and think about each person individually and find or make them something a little more meaningful and not increase the amount of “material goods” everyone has. If any of you reading this know me in real life, you know I’m an incredibly indecisive person and I often return things because I decide later on that I don’t like what I purchased or that I actually don’t need it. This is something that I absolutely do with gifts as well and is the reason why I wanted to take the time and plan more this year. For a few people on my list I decided to make an airplant display for them and this project turned out to be so quick and simple that it can be created for in the pinch presents that are also totally within budget!
Airplants are really unique plants and there are hundreds of species that originated from Central and South America. I love them because they don’t require much attention and are super easy plants that will thrive even if you are prone to killing anything green. They like bright filtered light and do not need watering often. The best way to water them are to remove them from their display or jar and soak them in a water bath for 30 minutes only once a week. When the water soak is finished make sure you allow the airplant to fully dry before placing it back in its’ home! Over watering or letting it sit in a pool of water can kill it really quickly.
I bought these baby airplants at my local nursery in Philadelphia called City Planter. They were $6.00 each for the small ones and $8.00 for the medium sized ones. I only purchased the small ones because I wasn’t sure what glass piece I was going to purchase for the display. I’ve seen mason jar or jam jar displays, open displays like I have and even wooden wreaths, so I wanted to be weary about what they could actually fit in. The medium sized ones were about a foot long and were really beautiful, I may go back and pick a few up for myself!
These glass “display jars” I purchased at AC Moore for $3.00 a piece and I filled them up with sand about a quarter of the way. I wanted to go for a beach theme since I grew up on Long Island, along with the people who are receiving these, so I thought it would be a sweet reminder of where we came from. I’ve seen other displays with potting soil or dirt so if you don’t want to spend extra money you could run outside and grab some from your backyard. While you’re out there you may also want to grab some rocks and moss to adorn your airplant home.
I purchased these black rocks from AC Moore for $3.00, I live right outside the city and haven’t really found a place to run around looking for pine cones and rocks that I can just take for my crafts yet so it was easier to purchase for me. However, I did use shells that I collected during a beach adventure with Conor over the summer so this saved me some money. If you don’t have a beach near you, AC Moore does sell bags of small shells for about $6.00.
Sometimes I struggle with stylizing displays or projects and if you struggle with this as well then I recommend just throwing it together, literally! I was joking with Conor that no matter where I put the rocks, they don’t look natural or artfully placed, so I just dropped a handful of rocks and it turned out that it looked nice. Sometimes you just need to let go and just do it. Small life lesson in Christmas gifting. After you place your rocks just place your air plant in the sand and you’re finished! No need to “plant” them, you’ll be removing it to water once a week anyway. I will be traveling for the holidays so I went out and bought small cupcake boxes, filled them with tissue paper and packed up the displays. Each one cost me less than $10 and an airplant display of this size would normally sell for about $30. The total time it took me to put together five displays was maybe 20 minutes while taking photos for this post. I’m so happy with how they came out and it’s a plus that it was so quick, easy and affordable; perfect for a last minute gift! Merry Christmas everyone!