Saturday, 27 August 2016

Gardening Experience with Floral Garage SG - Premium DIY Terrarium Kit Review (Promo code for readers)

I really love DIY products (Do-it-yourself) because of the customisable and personalised aspects. And I never thought that gardening could be this fun, and more challenging than expected (in a good way). When I received the Premium DIY Terrarium Kit from Floral Garage, I immediately thought that it's a brilliant gift to someone that matters a lot to you. I feel that it's perfect for loved ones since you can customise it as a handmade gift, and you can actually have real fun with it before giving it away. I think that's the best excuse to convince yourself to get it as a gift haha.

Remember to read till the below to enjoy a promo code which is valid till end of the year!

Floral Garage not only offers ready-made terrariums and DIY terrarium kits, but they also offer an extensive range of other products such as the Floral Box under Flower Basket and Gift Set. They also have party packageparty decorfloral decorballoonspinata and party ware

Here is how a sample terrarium looks like, I never thought that cactuses can look so gorgeous like an artpiece. I love how the seashells and sand compliment the terrarium so well, and it can be used as a decorative ornament on your side table. Cactuses also require minimum care so it can be a great decorative idea for people who wants some "nature feel" in the house but is too busy to take care of the plants. 

SOOOO EXCITED TO START THIS "MINI TERRARIUM PROJECT". Also, I invited my bro and cousin, SH to DIY with me, the more the merrier. 

The Premium DIY Terrarium Kit includes a glass round bowl and jar with lid, 6 mini potted plants, Premium Terrarium Mix, activated charcoal, gravel, 3 packets of decorative pebbles of different colours, spray bottle and a set of cute miniature gardening tools. I also didn't expect the size of the kit to be this BIG. 

Check out the cute plants! I like that the assorted plants come in different shapes and sizes so that we can work on different layering and colours. I think the plants look very vibrant too. 

The glass jar and bowl that were included in the kit have a very sturdy and good quality glass material, which can be proven by its thickness and weight. Initially, I preferred the glass bowl as it has a larger surface area, allowing me to fill it up with more plants. But after looking at the final product, I might have chosen the closed jar. Both have very different styles so it's really up to your preference!

It's really helpful that they have included a step-by-step guide to teach you how to create your own terrarium. Everything is also handwritten and handrawn, and I really appreciate their effort! I wished there were more detailed instructions but Irena was really helpful and patient in answering all of my questions. I will also be sharing some of the tips or steps that are not mentioned in this guide. 


"How much is 2cm of gravel?"

I poured all the gravel in a tub of water and just gave it a good rinse before filtering the dirty water away. It doesn't really matter if they are slightly damp as long as they are not dripping too much water.

Spread a thin layer of gravel into your jar/bowl (about 2 cm). At this stage, you don't have to stack the gravel too high as it will be covered by the terrarium soil mix afterwards. The gravel is essential in working as a drainage to filter the excess water in the soil so that you won't "drown" the plant from overwatering.

I think that the whole process of creating the terrarium took quite long (a few hours) as I was already having a dilemma on whether I should stop or continue adding more gravel into my bowl. Can you imagine? And that's only the FIRST step. That's because I am taking every single step so seriously okayyy!! Probably to the point that I might have irritated my brother and SH a little too much hahaha.


"BBQ-ing my plants"

Lay a thin layer of activated charcoal pellets on top of the gravel. It's essential for the closed jar terrarium they are effective in absorbing the toxins within the jar. It's not really necessary for the glass bowl as open terrariums are usually well-ventilated. (I added in to mine anyway without realizing the real purpose of the charcoal)

Now it looks like a mini "BBQ pit".


"I think I'm killing my plant"

One of the most challenging but entertaining part of the whole terrarium project was to actually deal with the real plants. I had to be really gentle with the plants when I was removing them out from the pot, in case I accidentally rip off their roots. #tooviolent.

Some of the plants were more easy to handle than the others. At the start, I was actually tried my best to remove all the soil, leaving the bare roots behind. But I think I almost killed my plant.

Anyway, I realized that I made some mistakes along the way and my plant wasn't very much alive after a few days. Irena was very generous in sending me a few more potted plants so that I could complete my terrarium project and make it successful. I think it's just me and my not-very-fantastic gardening skills as SH's terrarium was looking so awesome at the end of the day.

Here are some points that I have learnt from experience:

Firstly , there must be sufficient soil for the plants to grow well. On the first try, I might have put too little soil hence, the plants were unable to absorb enough water. On the next try, I just spammed the soil. I actually mixed in the original soil as well, to prevent over-stressing the roots.

Another important point is that the roots should be embedded deeply into the soil. I used the spade to gently push in the roots beneath the soil, as deeply as possible. Then I gently pat the top to secure the soil particles.

After I took note of these points, it's really not that difficult after all!

After placing the plants in the soil, add in even more soil to secure the plant from the sides, so that it won't shift around easily.


"Sprinkles on the plants

Here comes the fun and easy part - SPRINKLING TIME. Just grab a handful of pebbles (whichever colours that you like). For my terrarium I'll just add in all the colours to make it look more colourful. I started with the biggest grey pebbles, followed by the white pebbles and lastly the beige mini ones!

As I've mentioned earlier, I'm so bad at gardening that I almost killed my plant, this is why the plants may look different from the original potted plants. I've only used extra plants because I didn't know how to take care of them. Other than that, there is plenty of gravel, pebbles and terrarium mix for you to make more than just 2 jars! My brother actually went to Ikea to purchase another small glass bowl to decorate a mini terrarium with the remaining materials. 

I'm quite happy with my final product! I think that the important aspect is to keep things simple and not to overcrowd the terrarium. 

SH's final product

Overall, I found this product really interesting and it tests on your creativity and gardening skills. Like I've said, you can enjoy the whole gardening process and then you can give the completed terrarium to somebody special. It's a 2-in-1 package!

On usual cases, terrariums only need to be watered once or twice a week. However, it really highly depends on your environment. For my plants, they are watered daily to keep the soil damp, and just in case you are wondering, they are still growing healthily until now! Cactuses however, only require to water once a week.

Last but not least, remember to key in promo code "MONICE10" to enjoy a special 10% discount when shopping with Floral Garage! (Valid till 31 December 2016)

UPDATED PROMO: MoniceXFG15 to enjoy 15% off.

*Promo code is valid for other products other than the DIY terrarium

Thank you Floral Garage! ♥

Photo cr: Colman(My bro)

Friday, 5 August 2016

I've officially graduated!

My school term has actually ended last December and having to wait 7 full months for my commencement ceremony, I think I kind of lost the enthusiasm in between the long wait. But as the day was nearing, my excitement returned! After all, it's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

On a side note, I really like my school's gown. Because its black! And the cord is yellow! I quite like this combination, and it's actually my favourite compared to other gowns.

I think I was super last minute, I only bought my black heels the night before the ceremony. I wanted to just go ahead with flats knowing that I'm so bad with heels. But my friends convinced me and said that I will look better with heels. So glad I took that advice.

Anyway I got one which isn't too high, so I DID NOT trip and fall on the stage ;)

I was actually supposed to reach school between 1130-1230. I think I reached about 12 noon but I felt that I was really late because there were already many graduates who are already in their gown!!! PANIC PANIC. But then I quickly found the correct place and changed into my gown too. I met a few friends along the way Bernice, Chelsea and I saw Jessica too. But it was so rushed I ended up not taking a photo with her.

I wish that I had reached school earlier to take more photos!! Oh well.

With Chelsea
With Bernice

By this time, my feet was already hurting from my new heels. Almost regretted wearing it. Haha.

We were seated in the hall by 1pm and I was already quite anxious and excited! I was lucky that I was sitting beside a familiar classmate, Muzna and Chelsea was just right behind me. After all, I have to bear with the long hours and it's always good to have friends around! I'm also worrying that my phone batt will die off. Such a paranoid. And I was panicking about where to place my phone when I'm going up the stage hahaha.

By 3pm, everyone was getting impatient. Business graduates were the last batch to go up stage so we were already tired and bored towards the end, and we can't wait to finish this whole commencement. Not exactly patient as I have friends waiting for me outside the hall.

Soon enough, it was my turn to go up the stage! I think I felt a little shaky inside and I realized that I do have stage fright, which I wasn't so aware of in the past. I don't even have to say a word, but just stepping onto the stage and receiving my certificate already scares me. Btw, FRIENDS, I DID NOT fall down or trip because of my heels HAHA. I hurried off the stage after giving an awkward smile for the camera. I think the first thing that immediately came off my mind was "Oh yes, this is over."

I was already rushing for the toilet right after the whole ceremony. By then, the atrium was flooded with graduates and parents so I found a little corner by the ATM machines to meet my friends who came down to congratulate me! That corner was honestly quite comfortable and away from the huge crowd. But after that, I realize that I was compromising on the photo quality.

My mum also bought me a polaroid in BABY PINK, which I brought along with me to take more photos!

Anyway, here are the rest of the photos!

Jamie . Me . Pat

With Carmen
With my family and relatives
Me . Jolin . Shu Yi
With Muzna
With Khadijah
With my bro

SH . Me . Siyuh

My family

Thanks to my family's never-ending support and encouragement, without them I wouldn't be able to achieve what I have today. And also thanks to everyone who came all the way to SIM to congratulate me! I know it's super far away for some of you, but you still made the effort. I really appreciate it! And I love ALL the gifts and sweet cards!! ;) 

And I'm officially moving on to the next phase of my life - Working life.

I miss school life already!!