DIY Customise

‘Up’ Themed Trixie House

I’m sure that Chai will be more interested in what adventure (or dinner!) her keen sense of smell and hearing will lead her to as opposed to admiring the latest theme I’ve chosen for her vivarium. Since she won’t mind, and I enjoy Disney, the first theme for her vivarium is Disney Pixar ‘Up’, a heartwarming film full of brightly painted houses, balloons and forest.


What I Used

  • Trixie Wooden House (29 x 17 x 20 cm) I got mine from Amazon
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Cardboard (the amazon box the house came in)
  • PVA Glue
  • Scissors
Unpainted Trixie Wooden House still in packaging. Akira the cat quickly realised it wasn’t for him.

Measuring for the Window Frame

Before painting I pressed the cardboard against the window (using two pens so I had both hands free) to get my window measurement. I eyeballed the sign for in front of the door and didn’t measure for the chimney because I added that at the last minute.

Once I had a sketch of the shape of the window I drew the same shape a few millimetres outward from the window shape, then cut the frame out.


The Trixie House isn’t the same shape as the flying house in Up, the colours I chose to feature was with consideration to the orange and light blue sticky back plastic that will line the inside of the vivarium. The pictures (below) show the second coat of green on the front and the first coat of brown for the roof.

Because I’d painted the front, back and inside of the house first, I had to use masking tape to protect the more visible front from the light blue. In hindsight I should have painted the front of the roof and window panels first, I’d also have not tried to paint the inside of the door frame – it was painted white, blue and finally green when none of the alternatives worked.


Earlier I’d cut out a rectangle for a sign and border for the window. I painted these and using the PVA glue attached them onto the front of the house. Once they were attached the light blue of the doorframe didn’t fit, so I painted it green and mixed the wrong shade – drat!

Leftover paint was used to paint the balloons that will be stuck to the back of the vivarium, another reference to the epic scene in Up when his house flies away under the power of helium!

And we’re done!

A pretty and hopefully cosy sleeping nest for a domestic hedgehog.

I added the red chimney on an impulse, cutting the shape of the roof by hand and using PVA glue to support it. This is where the balloons will connect to the house using string – or not if it looks like this will be hazardous.


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