| | | |

Gold DIY Mini Greenhouse {Ikea Hack}

This gold DIY Mini Greenhouse from IKEA is so cute! It only takes 30 minutes total to complete and costs less than $30. It’s the perfect IKEA hack for any time of the year!

I’m super excited about today’s project! Even though I have a black thumb, I have been swooning over all the beautiful greenhouses I’ve seen online lately. Although this greenhouse is tiny, it’s affordable… and gold!

This DIY gold mini greenhouse might be my favorite IKEA hack yet.

Easy IKEA Hack: Mini Greenhouse

Back in 2014, I fell in love with the Socker Greenhouse in the IKEA catalog.

A cute greenhouse for less than $20? Sold. I picked it up at IKEA immediately and knew right away it would be the perfect hacking candidate. 😄

I took it home for a makeover—and you can too!

How To Make A DIY Mini Greenhouse

In this tutorial, I’ll show you how easy it is to create your own mini greenhouse. Just follow along!

Gather Your Supplies

Here’s what you’ll need to make a mini greenhouse – in gold!

In the photo below, I’m showing you everything that comes in the box when you buy the IKEA SOCKER greenhouse.

An indoor mini greenhouse from IKEA in a box.

The instructions are just like you’d expect from IKEA, and the greenhouse is actually a stark white color.

The SOCKER Greenhouse from IKEA for a DIY Mini Greenhouse Hack.

The white greenhouse is simple and clean, but I wanted more pizzaz! So, I purchased some Martha Stewart liquid gilding.

Martha Stewart Crafts liquid gilding in an unopened package.

Here’s how I hacked the IKEA SOCKER greenhouse and created my own gold mini greenhouse.

DIY Mini Greenhouse Instructions

Now that you have your supplies, here’s how to make your DIY greenhouse.

Remove All Plastic From The Frames

My plan was to paint the outsides of the greenhouse with the gilding. I was super excited to see that the plastic sides were not only wrapped in a sticky layer of plastic but were also easily removable from the frame.

I opted to remove all the pieces, leaving just the metal frames.

IKEA SOCKER greenhouse parts and pieces.

Cover Mini Greenhouse Frame With Gilding

I then enlisted Scott to help me, and we used foam brushes to cover the entire outside of the frame with the gold gilding. It was my first time working with this product, and I loved how beautiful the finish was!

Using a foam brush to cover metal greenhouse pieces in liquid gold.

Paint Over Cardboard

To prevent your work area from getting any drips, lay out some cardboard. I used the cardboard box the greenhouse pieces came in, and it was the perfect size for us to paint over.

Using a foam brush to paint DIY terrarium pieces

Paint Slowly And Cover Completely

I like to use a foam brush because I feel like I have more control over where the gilding ends up. If you prefer a paintbrush, feel free to use that instead! You just want to make sure every single space of your greenhouse is covered.

Take your time! If you rush, you might waste gilding or end up with lumpy paint on your frame.

Martha Stewart gold gilding being applied to a white metal frame.

Isn’t it looking amazing so far? You can always add a second coat if you notice some drips or things don’t look quite right.

A foam brush lays on cardboard while a man paints greenhouse pieces gold.

I just adore how shiny and glamorous the liquid gilding makes this greenhouse! That color reminds me of the sun!

A white greenhouse frame being painted with gold gilding.

Let It Dry Completely

Before putting it together, let all the parts dry completely. To be safe, I recommend letting them dry overnight.

Assemble DIY Mini Greenhouse

The next day, after it was dry, we put the greenhouse plastic sides back in the frame and put it all together again.

I decided to leave the inner frame white since the gild had a strong scent, and I wasn’t sure how plants would do with it.

You all will be proud to know that I put REAL plants in it and fought the temptation to get plastics. 😁

A man puts together a newly painted indoor terrarium

I didn’t hack the greenhouse mechanically, so we just followed the instructions it came with and put it together.

A man assembles the SOCKER Greenhouse from IKEA

Tips To Make A Mini Greenhouse Easily

I have a couple of tips that I think will help make this project a little easier!

Only Dip The Tip Of The Brush

As you can see in my photo below, you only want to dip the tip of the foam brush in the gilding.

If you get too much gilding on your brush, it will drip off and waste the product. It will also be difficult to control and could leave unsightly brush strokes and drips on your greenhouse.

Dipping a foam brush into liquid gilding.

Use Even Strokes

Pay close attention to the direction you paint the pieces of your greenhouse. Always apply the gilding with the strokes in the same direction. This will give it a polished and professional appearance.

Close up of a man painting a mini greenhouse gold

Ideas For What To Put In An Indoor Greenhouse

Now that you have your fully assembled and repainted mini greenhouse ready, it’s time to fill it up! What will you put inside? It’s pretty small in size, but here are a few greenhouse ideas for you!

Fill With Mini Succulents

Isn’t this beautiful? One of my personal favorite DIY mini greenhouse ideas is to fill it up with succulents. It’s the perfect size for other small plants too.

Gold mini greenhouse displaying live plants.

Do mini greenhouses need air holes?

Mini terrarium opened up, with a potted green plant, succulent, and pink flowers inside.

Well, plants do need air to survive. But the awesome design feature that these mini greenhouses have is that you can leave the top of the greenhouse fully closed, fully open, or partially open.

An indoor greenhouse with three small plants inside.

How cool is that? That’s why they’re so perfect for plants, regular use, or swapping out decor items seasonally!

A close up of a gold mini greenhouse

I love the color it came out to be! Isn’t that gold finish gorgeous?

A mini greenhouse with three small plants inside of gold planters.

Display Old Books In Your Mini Greenhouse

If you don’t like plants/flowers, that’s okay! Fill it with books and glitter-dipped feathers. Or whatever you happen to have on hand.

Something I love decorating with is old books! After playing around with this mini greenhouse, I discovered it is the perfect size for holding a small stack of books along with a few plants.

An indoor greenhouse displaying books and small decor items.

I love how my mini greenhouse matches the gold in the plant pot too. Gold is a very trendy color right now, and this craft couldn’t be any easier!

A view from the side of a gold mini greenhouse with books inside.

Now, go make one of your own! 🙂 It’s super easy, I promise!!

More Gilding Crafts And Ideas

After we finished the outside of the greenhouse frame and were waiting for it to dry, we went a little crazy with the gilding. We could also call this post “we must gild all things.”

Here are just a few more things you can apply gild to and create:

1. Upcycle An Old Book Into A Notebook

First, we tried to gild one of the books I converted into a notebook. Isn’t it pretty? 

Brushing gold gilding on to the cover of an old book

2. Make Old Scissors Look Like New

Then, I found a pair of crafting scissors that were red. Red… boo! So, I decided to make them gold instead.

Much prettier!

Adding liquid gilding to plastic red scissors
Painting red scissors gold

3. Redecorate A White Mirror

Then, we found a plain white-framed mirror and decided we’d rather it be gold, so Scott gilded it for us. You might recognize it as my DIY rope mirrors twin!

While a painted mini greenhouse dries, a man brushes gilding on a white mirror

Isn’t this gilding amazing? One little jar goes a long way.

I’m actually impressed with how many projects we accomplished with just a little jar of liquid gold and some foam brushes.

Repainting an oval shaped wall mirror with a foam brush

The best thing about using foam brushes (and being extra careful) is that you don’t need painter’s tape. However, I still recommend adding painter’s tape to the mirror before painting it, just in case.

Painting a wooden framed mirror gold

More Fun Greenhouse Ideas

Want even more ideas of ways you can use this DIY greenhouse? Check out these fun DIY mini greenhouse ideas from a few of my friends.

Wedding Decor And Card Holder

Turn mini greenhouses into wedding decor! You can personalize yours with chalk pens and use it to hold cards or blessings from your guests.

Turn It Into A Dollhouse

Since the “glass” is plexiglass, you could transform your DIY mini greenhouse into a see-through dollhouse. Wouldn’t that be adorable in a little girl’s room?

via Mommo

Create A Winter Scene

Wouldn’t a mini greenhouse make the perfect setting for a winter scene to use along with your seasonal decorations? Get creative with some fake snow, bottlebrush trees, maybe a mini truck, and more!

Beautiful And Functional

I love this idea! It combines my ideas to create a DIY greenhouse for your nightstand. It holds books, magazines, plants and looks stunning.

mini greenhouse on a nightstand
via Ikea Hackers

DIY Mini Greenhouse Bird Feeder

Instead of a traditional pinecone bird feeder, create one that’s beautiful, unique, and stunning in an open window!

DIY bird feeder
via Rainy Day Projects

For Succulent Lovers

A succulent lover’s dream! Here’s another way to fill your DIY greenhouse with succulents. In my version, I added mini pots of succulents. I love that this version has loose dirt filled with succulents.

Turn Greenhouses Into Shelves

How creative is this? Adding brackets to the bottom of your greenhouses will allow you to transform them into clear, chic shelving units. Then you can fill them with a variety of visually interesting items.

DIY green house shelving units
via La Bici Azul

FAQs About DIY Mini Greenhouse Project

Can you seal gold gilding paint?

Yes! I didn’t do it for this project, but if you want to seal your project after the gilding dries, you can. Just apply a clear sealant, either with a spray or using a sponge brush, and let it dry completely.

Is gilding the same as plating?

After seeing this project, you might be wondering if I actually applied real gold to my greenhouse. Gilding is a technique used to apply a very thin layer of gold to a surface – in this case, by painting it on.

Some gilding paints contain actual gold, while others are gold-colored. Read your label carefully to determine which your is.

Plating is different because it involves mechanically applying a thin sheet of gold to the surface.

I hope you love this Ikea hack and these greenhouse ideas! With just a little time and creativity, you can take something basic like this mini greenhouse from Ikea and turn it into something stunning.

More Easy Crafts

After you finish this craft, here are some more you’ll enjoy too!

DIY Gold Mini Greenhouse

Fun spring Ikea hack!
Tags: ikeahack, minigreenhouse
Makes: 1 greenhouse
Cost: $30


  • Remove All The Plastic Pieces From the Frames
  • Cover The Outside of the Frame With Gilding
  • Paint Over Cardboard
  • Paint Slowly And Cover Completely
  • Only Dip The Tip of the Brush
  • Use Even Strokes
  • Let It Dry Completely
  • Assemble the Mini Greenhouse


Read this blog post to get even more detailed instructions! 
Tried this recipe?Mention @runtoradiance or tag #runtoradiance!

Photo of Tania Griffis, owner of Run to Radiance
 | Website

Tania Griffis is an accomplished writer, blogger, and interior designer with a Journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma. She started her popular blog, Run to Radiance, in 2011, demonstrating her design expertise through the personal remodeling of six houses to millions of readers across the globe.

Tania also owns The Creative Wheelhouse, a respected ghostwriting agency for bloggers, further showcasing her talent for creating engaging and informative content.

Similar Posts


    1. You should! And if gold isn’t your thing there are a lot of other lovely colors you could choose! 🙂

  1. I saw this the other day at Ikea but they only had the display. I’m already planning another Ikea trip next month so hopefully they’ll have them in stock them. I’m with you on gilding all of the things. My house looks like King Midas took a stroll through it. haha 🙂

    1. It took me a bit to find them Rachel! They were kind of sneakily stacked somewhere nowhere near the display. Kind of want another one, but have to cut myself off at some point. CRACKING UP at King Midas. hahaha!

    1. Haha Samantha don’t worry, me too. I also killed a succulent! 🙂 I thought those were impossible to kill.

  2. I just bought this and assembled it. The SOCKER greenhouse is incredibly poorly designed, unless I assembled it wrong. Basically if you ever try to pick it up by anything other than the very base, the bottom will pop off and the entire thing will collapse. They couldn’t figure out a way to attach the bottom to the rest of the walls?? I’m very disappointed in IKEA.

  3. Pingback: Cacao Blog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *