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Mum Saves £300 on Greenhouse Using Poundland Bargains

8 April 2021, 4:00 pm
  • Jolene O’Brien, 44, saved £300 on an indoor greenhouse by making her own out of Poundland photo frames
  • The total cost was just £7 as she also used household items such as shoe polish and pliers
  • Comes up with creative ideas after letting them ‘pop up inside me like when we’re kids’

Terrariums are the perfect way to add a unique decorative twist to any room, and one thrifty mum has managed to save £300 by making her own for just £7.

Jolene O’Brien, 44, from Denbighshire in North Wales and mum of one, had spent a while looking for a little terrarium but struggled to find the right item. ‘Everywhere I looked, they were so expensive or not exactly what I was looking for,’ she told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk.

‘One night I had an idea that I could possibly fit photo frames together to make my own. I couldn’t wait to get to Poundland the next morning! I was so excited when I stood in the shop lining the frames up to see if it would work and they seemed to be the right size.’

The project was just one of many for Jolene, who also transforms discounted furniture she finds at car boot sales. She shares her projects with friends and family on Facebook.

‘I had always loved crafting as a child but as I got older that fell to the sidelines. After I trained as a mindfulness meditation teacher and my mind started to quieten, I found that my natural creativity and inspiration started to come back and all these lovely imaginative ideas just pop up from inside me like when we’re kids.’

The project managed to cost under £10, as Jolene had most of the equipment needed lying around at home. ‘I spent £7 on Poundland frames and because I already had everything else at home that’s all I spent. I bought 2 8x10 frames, 2 8x10 certificate frames and 6 4x6 frames.’

‘I also used Frenchic paint which I had left over from a previous project, a craft knife and pliers I’ve had for years and a little wall filler from Home Bargains. Finally, I used a little dab of brown shoe polish for the edges.’

Armed with her supplies, Jolene got to work preparing the materials. ‘I took all the backs off the frames and removed the glass, then cleaned the glass and set it aside.

‘The next step was to remove the metal tabs from the frames with pliers. They were a little tricky to get out but I used pliers. Taking them out made it look neater.

‘I filled in the holes with filler and once that was dry I lightly sanded the areas to smooth them down. Then I painted all the frames inside and out and glued the larger frames together with a hot glue gun.’

Jolene advised that some people may prefer stronger glue in the construction stage, but the benefit of the gun was that it’s easy and dries fast. She also advises to leave one side unglued so the glass can easily be fitted back in.

After slotting in the frames again, Jolene glued the smaller frames together and secured them at the top to make the roof. ‘I didn’t glue the roof to the bottom of the terrarium because it can be lifted off to put plants inside.’

To give the terrarium an antique look, Jolene employed the use of some shoe polish. ‘I dabbed some onto a cloth and wiped it along the edges of the frames. I’m sure there is proper wax you can buy for this but the shoe polish worked great.’

‘I absolutely love how it’s turned out,’ Jolene says. ‘I’ve seen similar ones online for £200-300 so I think I’ve saved a couple of hundred pounds at least. Next time I might make a crazy one with bright colours or a haunted house!

‘If you are looking to make one yourself, I’d just advise to enjoy the process and take your time with it. I like to enjoy the process of crafting rather than just the end result.’

Tom Church, co-founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, says: ‘Jolene has done a fantastic job creating this terrarium, and it’s sure to provide inspiration for many.

‘Gardening equipment and decor can be expensive at the best of times, so it’s great to see that you can save so much money by using your imagination.’

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What do you think of this?
macunningh24111a year ago

Wow, this is amazing

DebbieWatta year ago

Wow this is fantastic im going to show my 20 Yr old this so she can make one for her work thanks for sharing.

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