5 small DIY projects: from mini flower arrangements to toy disco balls | Architectural Summary

There’s something exceptionally satisfying about tiny versions of life-size objects. The details are much more intricate, the objects much cuter, and the possibilities much more creative. Psychologically speaking, there are a few ideas as to why humans are attracted to small objects.

“One hypothesis suggests that mini-versions are particularly appealing because of their ability to include so much detail in a small space,” says Meghan Marcum, PsyD, chief psychologist at AMFM Healthcare in San Juan Capistrano, Calif. This way we are able to see the whole thing at once, which can be appealing. Some researchers also suggest that we are drawn to miniatures because we can visualize our dominance, thereby making us feel more secure. “Having a mini replica of something we could only dream of helps us connect to that possibility,” adds Dr. Marcum.

In addition to their undeniable charm, small crafts are a creative way to display items you may not have the space for, if they are full size. Here are five small DIY projects that are sure to have a big impact.

Mini bouquets of flowers

Lily of the valley flowers create visual balance.

Excerpt from The Little Flower cookbook by Jill Rizzo (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2022. Photography: Maaike Bernstrom

“Making mini arrangements is all about the fun of slowing down and marveling at the intricate details of nature,” says Jill Rizzo, florist and author of The little flower cookbook. These tiny bouquets are the perfect starting point for budding florists or anyone looking to creatively downsize a bouquet. The ladder makes it easy to pluck out faded flowers and replace them with a sprig of something new, adds Rizzo. It’s all about experimenting.

To make a mini arrangement, you will need:

The berries add an unexpected sculptural element.

Excerpt from The Little Flower cookbook by Jill Rizzo (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2022. Photography: Maaike Bernstrom

“Tiny flowers can be seen everywhere once you start looking for them,” says Rizzo, so you don’t need to plant anything specifically if you already grow flowers or have access to wildflowers. Some flowers are naturally small, and larger flowers will often have smaller secondary flowers perfect for a mini arrangement. “If you don’t have access to the garden, buying small live plants is a great source for cutting leaves and flowers,” adds Rizzo.

Step 1: Gather supplies and flowers.

2nd step: Use the kitchen bottle to fill the mini vase with water.

Step 3: Arrange the flowers as you like. When mixing varieties, use the same arrangement formula you would use for a large bouquet, says Rizzo. Try combining a base foliage or leaf with a larger focal flower and a smaller secondary flower. “Finish with a few gestural elements like arrows or vines,” advises Rizzo.

Step 4: Find the perfect place for your arrangement. Look for a surface that isn’t too cluttered, otherwise your valuable work could be overlooked. “My number one place to place small arrangements is on my kitchen windowsill to be admired while doing the dishes,” says Rizzo.

mini pottery

The little pottery looks darling on the screen.

Amanda Kelly

What better way to display your little floral arrangement than in a mini vase you made yourself? Amanda Kelly, a miniature artist based in Roanoke, Virginia, started making mini pottery in 2020. “My first pots were terrible, but I kept practicing,” she says. “Don’t be afraid to play around and get familiar with the materials. It took me months to perfect my own technique.