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Tutorial Altered Art Harvest Canning Jar Lids

Updated on July 20, 2008

The summer of 2006 brought us an incredible garden and fall harvest. I spent a good portion of August and September canning and preserving the yields of our bumper crop gardens. Salsa, tomatoe stew, pickles, beets, peppers and more! Though I am now finished, it really seemed like it was never going to end.

As most canners, I enjoy giving gifts of homemade salsa, jams and other goodies to our friends and family. I probably spend just as much time decorating the jars and making goodie baskets. However, try as I do, it is often difficult to get those empty jars back, even with threats of no more salsa. This years was no exception, and with my bumper crop I found my self scrounging and scraping the bottom of the jar pile. I did manage to come up with a few jars from a variety of sources, so with some good scrubbing and brand new shiny brass lids I was back into the canning.

During the cleanup of jars, I gathered up all of the old lids and threw them into the recycle box to be sent off to our local recycler. The lids were rusted, dented and most had lost their shine. Though I felt bad to be disposing of them, I do have a standard that I must maintain for my canning.

Later that night in bed, I found myself thinking about those silly jar lids and what could I do with them. Then I found myself telling myself that "I can't recycle everything nor can I save the whole world of garbage so get a grip and leave them for the recycler"!

But in the morning when I woke up I knew exactly what to do with them. So here I was in my pj's hadn't even brushed my teeth and I was digging and clanging in our recycle box to fetch the lids. My husband thought I totally lost it when I came into the room wearing about 30 metal jar rings on my arms in my pj's.

Then armed with a rubber mallot and a hammer I went outside to the sidewalk with my lids and smashed, hammered and rubber malloted the lids flat. I only did 2 lids, but they were the most beautiful dented rustic vintage picture frames I had ever seen! I have now used some of them in my postcard art for you to see, with many plans to use these in my scrapbooks and altered book arts too!

My husband Tom has since flattened some more in his vice. Using a vice does give a "flatter" finish but use whatever tools you have available to make these fun frames for your vintage art projects. I am sure even your car tires on the driveway would work, but you are completely on your own! Have fun!

Below are some samples of projects I have made using the jar lids.

Kim Newberg

Free Image Down Loads from my Shareapic site

I have posted to this Shareapic site to share some free images for creating your own art items. Please help yourself to these images to use freely in your art creations both for personal use and for resale. Please do not use these images for reselling in any type of data file format. Most of these images are from my own personal creation or from public domain images that I have altered beyond original image. Be sure to visit my website for many other altered collage supplies including collage sheets, ephemera, embellishments and vintage objects.

Thank-you for stopping by!

Kim aka imagesbykim

My Favorite Links

A collection of links, websites, and blogs related to the altered arts, collage and mixed media

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      hi kim, love the lid idea! i will use it in my jewelry, thanks for sharing, angi in hana

    • John Dyhouse profile image

      John Dyhouse 

      9 years ago from UK

      Hi Kim, don't think I have seen this one, must have missed it. But as ever what a great inspiration for making more art. ( I maybe will show this to MOH as proof of what can be done with "rubbish" as she invariably calls my stash of stuff waiting to be used or altered

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      I LOVE the idea with the lids. Going to try it.

    • profile image

      Oh Petit Bebe 

      9 years ago

      Impressive artworks. Beautiful lens and a great read too.


    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      10 years ago from Croatia

      Welcome to Reuse it all! group! Glad to have you aboard!

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      10 years ago from Croatia

      Great images! And wonderful idea! Would you consider joining 'Reuse it all!' group? It's feauring lenses that have something to do with reusing common items!

    • SerenityPrayerG profile image


      10 years ago

      Lovely, creative, joyful! Thanks for sharing! :-)

    • Nancy S Oram profile image

      Nancy Oram 

      10 years ago

      Just when I thought it couldn't get better! I think this is the one I'll do with my grandaughters. They'll love it! Thanks for sharing and not just keeping your great idea all to yourself.


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