Real moss isn't meant to live in a glass jar. It likes to creep up things, fill in cracks and spread out. In my experience, and I've tried the terrarium thing a few times, it dies. So if you don't want to end up with chlorophyll on your hands, try making a faux terrarium instead.
It is very easy to make, but it does take some time to embroider the moss. This is a great project to work on while watching movies or TV, or before you go to sleep at night. Embroidery can be very relaxing and a pleasant way to clear your mind at the end of the day.
Here is how I made the Pixie Moss:
*Embroidery thread - Appleton crewel wool in color #546. I used 1.5 small skeins to make the moss in the dish above. If you don't have access to crewel wool, regular embroidery floss would work fine too.
*Brown canvas for the "soil"- I used a brown cotton duck, but a looser weave canvas would be even better. Duck was all I had on hand. If you use regular quilting fabric, add some interfacing or other stabilizer or the fabric will pucker and pull under the weight of the stitching.
*Green felt - Green is ideal, but it does not need to be a perfect color match with your thread. Brown felt would be ok too.
*Embroidery hoop - You'll need a size that is at least as big as your terrarium jar/dish. Slightly bigger is better.
*Pixie flowers and glass sead beads or other embellishments
*Crewel or embroidery needle
*Beading needle or milliner needle
*Beading or clear nylon thread
*Plastic bag, fabric scrap or small ball of fiberfill
1. Cut Fabric
Cut your canvas fabric so it is 2"-3" larger than your embroidery hoop in all directions.
2. Cut Felt
Cut 10-20 rounded shapes in various sizes from the felt. They do not need to be perfectly circular. These will be used to pad under the stitching to give the moss depth.
3. Stitch Felt to Canvas
Lay the felt pieces out on the surface, stacking some up on top of others. I used 2, 3 & even 4 layers in some spots.
Thread your crewel needle and using just a few stitches, tack the felt pieces down to hold them in place.
Beginning anywhere within the hoop, cover the surface in french knots. The Purl Bee has a great photo tutorial for french knots. Embroider an area about the size of your jar/dish, or slightly bigger.
Don't worry if the knots aren't perfect. Feel free to make some loose and messy or embroider knot on top of knot. It will make it look more natural.
5. Add Embellishments
Insert the needle through the fabric and then through the bottom of one flower.
Add a bead and then insert the needle back through the center of the flower. Pull the flower and bead down so they are nestled in the moss.
Repeat adding a few more flowers to the moss.
Crumple up the plastic bag or piece of scrap fabric and place it on top of the back side of the embroidery stitches.
Gather the fabric around the bag or fabric padding so the fabric ends are all at the bottom. Sew the ends down if you like.
Tuck the moss into your jar or dish. Squish it down into the bottom, using the tips of your scissors to push the fabric down the sides if necessary.
If it is in a jar, you might like one side of the moss up higher like it is trying to grow out the top. In dishes, a rounded mound might look best.
You can use your finger to push some indents into the moss here and there. Just poke it around (gently) until it fills out the bottom and looks lumpy and bumpy like real moss.
Place your terrarium on your desk or a shelf and gaze in wonder at the unnatural beauty of your never-needs-watering plant.