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Jar Crafts

Updated on October 7, 2014

Crafts with Jars

I usually recycle my glass jars, but I also tend to keep a whole bunch of them for crafts.

Glass jars, of course, are great for storing things. For one thing, glass jars are clear so you can see what's inside making them perfect vessels for all sorts of things. And the shape and size of some glass jars are just too beautiful to throw in the recycling bin.

I painted the lids of these three glass jars and will give them to my grandkids with Easter candy. Don't worry, I'll divvy up the goodies so one poor kid doesn't just get Smarties. (Though, I personally love Smarties!)

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

How to Paint Jar Lids - Click a small image to enlarge the photo and see the instructions.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Completed jars with painted lids. Click the other photographs to see the steps of how to do this easy craft. All photos by Peggy Hazelwood.Get the glass jars ready. Be sure the jars and lids are clean. When I'm finished with the food in a jar, I wash the jar and lid thoroughly, let them air dry then store them with the lid off to let any odors dissipate.Sand the jar lids. If you're going to paint the entire jar lid, a quick sanding will rough up the surface to let the paint adhere better. Wipe off the dust with a damp rag or paper towel.Paint the jar lids with acrylic craft paint. Set them on a plastic or cloth surface (not paper) so they won't stick. I usually give the lids two good coats.Add dots to the lids with contrasting paint color. I used a pencil eraser to dot on the paint. I added all the dots in one color, wiped off the eraser then moved on to the second color, and so on.Dotted jar lids. This is such an easy craft that kids can do too.As a final step, I added a coat of sealant (I used Mod Podge but any water-based sealer will work) to protect the paint and give it a little shine. Add a second coat if desired. Let dry then fill the jars and reseal with the painted lid!
Completed jars with painted lids. Click the other photographs to see the steps of how to do this easy craft. All photos by Peggy Hazelwood.
Completed jars with painted lids. Click the other photographs to see the steps of how to do this easy craft. All photos by Peggy Hazelwood.
Get the glass jars ready. Be sure the jars and lids are clean. When I'm finished with the food in a jar, I wash the jar and lid thoroughly, let them air dry then store them with the lid off to let any odors dissipate.
Get the glass jars ready. Be sure the jars and lids are clean. When I'm finished with the food in a jar, I wash the jar and lid thoroughly, let them air dry then store them with the lid off to let any odors dissipate.
Sand the jar lids. If you're going to paint the entire jar lid, a quick sanding will rough up the surface to let the paint adhere better. Wipe off the dust with a damp rag or paper towel.
Sand the jar lids. If you're going to paint the entire jar lid, a quick sanding will rough up the surface to let the paint adhere better. Wipe off the dust with a damp rag or paper towel.
Paint the jar lids with acrylic craft paint. Set them on a plastic or cloth surface (not paper) so they won't stick. I usually give the lids two good coats.
Paint the jar lids with acrylic craft paint. Set them on a plastic or cloth surface (not paper) so they won't stick. I usually give the lids two good coats.
Add dots to the lids with contrasting paint color. I used a pencil eraser to dot on the paint. I added all the dots in one color, wiped off the eraser then moved on to the second color, and so on.
Add dots to the lids with contrasting paint color. I used a pencil eraser to dot on the paint. I added all the dots in one color, wiped off the eraser then moved on to the second color, and so on.
Dotted jar lids. This is such an easy craft that kids can do too.
Dotted jar lids. This is such an easy craft that kids can do too.
As a final step, I added a coat of sealant (I used Mod Podge but any water-based sealer will work) to protect the paint and give it a little shine. Add a second coat if desired. Let dry then fill the jars and reseal with the painted lid!
As a final step, I added a coat of sealant (I used Mod Podge but any water-based sealer will work) to protect the paint and give it a little shine. Add a second coat if desired. Let dry then fill the jars and reseal with the painted lid!

Everything You Need to Make Painted Jar Lid Crafts - You Provide the Jars and Lids, Of Course!

Embellish the Jar Lids

Paint jar lids in neutral colors and decorate them with paint (dots, stripes, flowers, whatever you like) or decoupage a vintage image to the lid.

Keep these jars on hand to use for small gifts. Fill with tea bags, candy, hair barrettes, gum, mints (I could go on and on) for a quick gift.

Make your own snow globes

with small glass jars.

Craft Supplies for Jar Crafts - Use felt and paper to dress up jars and lids.

New jar, vintage label. Instant art.
New jar, vintage label. Instant art.

Gifts in a Jar

From baking mixes to candles

Glass jars are perfect beginnings to gifts. You've seen the baking mixes in jars with the pretty layers of flour, brown sugar, sugar, and chocolate chips. These make wonderful gifts for a housewarming or a new baby or any other occasion when you're just dropping by and want to take a friend of family member a little something.

Jars to Keep for Making Gifts in a Jar: pasta sauce jars, large peanut butter jars

Jar candles are so popular, but they can be pricey. Make your own candles using recycled jars and add scent to match the recipient.

Or make Soup in a Jar Recipes for gifts.

Jars to Keep to Make Candles: small decorative jars like jam jars, pickle and olive jars, baby food jars

Another way to use jars is to add vintage jar labels to any jar to instantly transform it into a lovely vase or jar for your bathroom shelf. This jar shown is an old liquor bottle, but I think it looks downright respectable with the vintage kitty and rick rack and vintage charm!

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

Labels for Jar Crafts - Adhere with decoupage glue

Do You Keep Glass Jars?

Do You Keep Glass Jars?

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Gifts in a Jar - Keep those glass jars and make gifts for all occasions!

Everyone has to eat. Give a gift that will be used and enjoyed! Gifts in a jar can be soup mixes, brownies ready to mix up (they have to add the eggs and butter, of course!), and S'mores! How fun would those be to make up and give?

Terrarium Plants for Your Recycled Jars - Create a terrarium with your large (or small) jars

Affiliate Disclosure

This author, Peggy Hazelwood, participates in Amazon, eBay, All Posters, and other affiliate advertising programs. When you click an advertising link on this page and make a purchase, I receive a small percent of the sale. Thank you for reading this far!

Have you ever used jars for crafts?

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    • profile image

      Moses 2 years ago

      These are awesome. If I didn't have cppary plastic wine glass holders over my kitchen sink full of glasses I never use or dust it would be SUCH a great kitchen fixture. I'll be putting this on my list of to dos .

    • profile image

      Fernanda 2 years ago

      Hi Alice! No you didn't miss it. It was my first attempt and so I didn't want to cclnoihre a potential disaster. lol. I used mod podge, a little water, and food coloring. Coated the inside, let it dry, and then baked in the oven on low for about 30 minutes. Pretty cool, huh?

    • RuthieDenise profile image

      RuthieDenise 4 years ago

      I have been wanting to look up some ideas on how to use my jars. I am glad I found this.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great ideas. I use them to save my buttons, bobbins, and safety pins. There are so many ideas to use...

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      It's amazing how many different ways one can use a jar. Let's keep those jars out of the landfills.

    • Lynda Makara profile image

      Lynda Makara 5 years ago from California

      Nice! I love your ideas.

    • Mistl profile image

      Mistl 5 years ago

      Very cute ideas for jars. I love the idea of re-using rather than trashing.

    • profile image

      anilsaini 5 years ago

      nice lens

    • Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 5 years ago from Vermont

      Oh my, I love glass jars and I save nearly every one to use for storage or to make crafts similar to yours. Glass jars can also be used to freeze foods if you leave 2 inches of head room, so I use them to freeze my pasta sauce and pesto. My favorite use is for storing dried pasta and dried fruits.

    • MelonyVaughan profile image

      MelonyVaughan 5 years ago

      What a wonderful lens. Thanks for sharing!