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I purchased this for my 6 year old daughter for Christmas 2013. It is a good quality product (but read on), with a great concept and whilst it requires some 'grown up' help, it is worth the result. You get 2 vials of 'snow' and 2 of glitter, with lots of press out templates (1 sheet per Princess - we had Ariel and Cinderella - I'm not sure if they are different in each box), and obviously the maker itself with 2 snow globes.
The instructions are generally easy to follow, sometimes it can be a little bit fiddly, but we got there in the end without any arguments! We produced our first snow globe and were really pleased with it, until we got up the next morning and realised it had leaked all over the hearth - not great when it's supposed to hold water! However, despite this setback, we exchanged the whole product, and set to work on the second attempt, which, I have to say, after 2 weeks, is still holding the water and works wonderfully. I felt the need to relay my first experience, just in case this happens again; I hope it was a one off, as the product itself is great and when it works, it works!
This was an item my 5 year old daughter was desperate for, and I made her wait until Christmas before she could have it. And to be honest, from previous bad experiences with poor quality Disney branded toys, this is not too bad at all.
The Disney Princess Snow globe Maker is exactly what it sounds like, you get to make a snow globe, 3 to be precise and its all pretty easy, but adult supervision is definitely required.
In the box you get the equipment required to make 3 very decorative snow globes, and they are surprisingly of a decent size. All you need to add yourself is the water (and perhaps a blob of washing up liquid). So you get the 3 plastic domes, 3 different sets of scenery, relevant to the 3 different princesses that also come included in the box, 2 tubes of glitter, and 2 tubes of snow. You also get a 'work station' which is basically a plastic unit which has 4 slots in which to stand the glitter, a circular section to position your snow globe and a funnel which helps when you are filling said snow globe with glitter and water. There is also a small drawer in this unit to store unused pieces of scenery.
When you set to work on creating your snow globe, it is advisable to follow the instructions. Because the 3 snow globes come already assembled (minus any scenery and princesses) you have to unscrew the base, and there is quite a specific way of doing this, and then you have to pull out the base which is inside the globe (where the scenery will be positioned), and this requires gentle force, if there is such a thing! Once you have dismantled the snow globe, then you can begin positioning your scenery. This scenery is made from semi transparent plastic, and in the wrong hands could be quite lethal because some of the edges are quite sharp. So again, adult supervision is required. Positioning the scenery can be quite fiddly because you have to slot it into some very narrow slits on the base of the globe. Once done, you then put your princess figure on the notch in the centre, and you can then put the globe back together. You are now ready to fill with glitter and snow, and finally the water. This all goes through a hole in the top, which then is plugged up with a small removable bung.
Once the globe is complete you are free to admire it at your leisure. There is a wheel underneath for turning the princess around, and there is fan inside the globe at the top which you can spin using a knob on the top of the globe. This is so the glitter can float around, and again surprisingly this does actually work and the snow tends to stay suspended in the water for a considerable amount of time! The instructions recommend adding a small blob of washing up liquid to the water and I'm not sure if this assists in helping the glitter to stay suspended.
The finished globes do look pretty impressive and my daughter is really pleased with them, but they do leak slightly, and it does say in the instructions that you mustn't vigorously shake them or turn them upside down (their reasoning is that the scenery might come out of position, but I think its because the water will probably all pour out!). And ours have been dropped on occasion and the water and glitter has leaked out of the top. The water has also gone cloudy really quickly which is a little disappointing, but the good thing is that you can empty them out and replace the water when ever you want. You can also reposition, or even change the scenery if you so wish.
One disappointing thing about these snow globes is that the pictures on the box are quite misleading. They make the scenery appear to be made out of vivid colours, when in fact on opening the box you will find washed out faded colours which are quite difficult to see. But once inside the globe there seems to be a magnifying effect which makes the scenery appear a bit clearer ( but no less washed out).
So overall me and my daughter have been rather pleased with the quality of these snow globes, and the end result is really pleasing. They are recommended for children aged 6 and over which I would agree with (my daughter is now 6), but even at the recommended age, adult supervision is definitely required due to the fiddly bits and the constructing of the globes, this is far too hard for a child to do. My daughter would not be capable of doing any of it on her own.
Currently available from Toys R Us for £24.99 which I think is a bit pricey for what you get, it has been known to be cheaper. But in my opinion its definitely one of the better quality Disney branded toys.
My daughter saw an advert on television shortly before Christmas for a Disney Princess Snow Globe Maker. It quickly went on her list and she was very pleased to open it on Christmas day!
The Snow Globe Maker is made by a company called John Adams and comes packaged inside a cardboard box which is decorated in a princess perfect manner! There are instructions inside the box in written and diagram form, which is very helpful. You should follow the instructions carefully the first time but after that you should be fine to not need them. The set is recommended for children 6+ years. Inside the box is a pink plastic workstation base, 2 tubes of glitter, 2 tubes of 'snow', 3 Princess figures, printed scenery sheets and 3 domes.
You start by assembling the main workstation. The is a simple task which involves clipping a few bits on to the workstation (which is lucky as it doesn't fit in the box when assembled, so you need to dismantle and assemble each time you want to use it!). There are holes either side of the workstation to safety store the glitter/snow tubes and a small drawer inside the workstation where you can safety store some of the scenery pictures.
There are a number of different scenery sheets - they are Cinderella, Little Mermaid and Snow White themed. You need to push the pictures out of the sheet to begin (you only need to do this the first time you use them), which is relatively easy. You can mix up your pictures if you wish but my daughter prefers to use the same themed pictures for each snow globe. There are lots of small pictures which can be used to scatter around your snow globes - these include birds, squirrels, princes, glass slipper, fish, mice (along with lots of familiar faces and popular characters). There are also some larger pictures which can be used as backdrops for the snow globes. The pictures are waterproof and made of a thin plastic material. They all look very nice but some of the smaller ones can be a little bit flimsy, so be careful!
To get started you need to choose a dome (each dome looks the same but they have slightly different colour schemes) and turn anti-clockwise which releases the dome from its base. The domes have a waterproof seal which makes removing the dome from its base quite tricky - my daughter needs my help to take off and put on the dome, it's too tough and fiddly for her to do. The next few steps are the 'fun part' and can be done independently by my daughter. You need to decorate the inside of the dome/snow globe by choosing your pictures and slotting them in to the dome base (the pictures have small tabs on the bottom and the dome base has slots which the tabs can be pushed inside to secure the pictures in place). In the centre of the dome base is a spindle - this is where you place your chosen princess figure (they have small holes underneath them to secure them in to place). Once the dome is decorated to your taste you can then put the dome lid back on (again my daughter needs my help with this as it's quite tough for her).
At this point the snow globe is almost done, it's just time to add the water, glitter and snow! The dome needs to be placed on to the centre of the workstation and the funnel should be placed inside the hole on top of the dome (each dome has a plug in the top of it - this needs to be removed when filling up/tipping away the water and kept closed at all other times). I think the workstation is a bit of a gimmick to be honest, you could easily make your snow globes without the use of the workstation... it does look quite fancy though! The glitter and snow should be added first, you can choose the colour (pink or silver) and how much glitter/snow to use - you don't really need very much. We still have some glitter left in our set but we are running low, when the glitter runs out you can use normal glitter (which is very cheap to buy). The water then needs to be poured in to the funnel SLOWLY until the water reaches the very top of the dome, it's best to use a jug as the funnel is quite small. You're snow globe is complete!
When I first saw the Snow Globe Maker I thought it was a set in which you made one snow globe and that was it. However I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the set contains 3 snow globes and they're reusable - you can empty, redecorate and refill at any time - great value! Since Christmas my daughter has made numerous snow globes and has continuously kept at least one in her bedroom as a decoration! I should imagine that all young girls would enjoy this set - not only is it fun and creative, but you also get a beautiful decoration at the end of it. It's quite time consuming, but in a good way - my daughter never gets bored 'mid snow globe' and I get some peace! She usually takes about 15 minutes on each snow globe. My daughter loves anything to do with Disney Princesses and really enjoys making her own scenes and 'stories' inside the snow globes, as well as the added bonus of the princess figures which sit so beautifully in the middle of the snow globes! There is a spinner on the bottom of the snow globe, when pushed the princess spins around in the middle of the snow globe. Plus there is also a spinner on top of the snow globe, when spun it swishes the water around and creates a snow/glitter storm! This is a good feature to have as it discourages my daughter from shaking the snow globe around too much and potentially ruining all of her hard work! The snow globes are actually quite sturdy and my daughters creations are usually kept safe, however she did once drop one of her snow globes and a couple of the pictures fell out and we had to empty it to fix it. No big deal, we just know to be careful next time!
I'd say the only downside of the Disney princess Snow Globe Maker is that it's a bit fiddly at times, me and my daughter would feel much happier if I didn't have to keep stepping in to help. Another downside for us is that one of our snow globes leaks - the waterproof seal doesn't look right and it doesn't stay in place, so we basically have one useless snow globe.
The Disney Princess Snow Globe Maker generally costs £15.00 - £20.00 (which isn't too bad for something which is reusable) and is available at most toy shops etc.
Overall this is an almost princess perfect set, which my daughter and I are happy to recommend to other little princesses!