Arts & Crafts: Crafty Uses for Mason Jars Around the House

mason jar with popped open lidMason jars are highly versatile and can be utilized for various purposes in and around the house. They are also a great medium for packaging presents – particularly useful with the upcoming holiday season. At their most simplistic level, Mason jars can be used for preserving food items or holding drinks. Beginner DIY enthusiasts can get crafty with these glass jars and elevate them into something special. The tools needed for the projects below can be found at

Vase – While people can add water and flowers into a plain Mason jar, a recent trend has been to paint and decorate the exterior of the glass based on a particular theme or color. There are infinite possibilities including fall-inspired designs, snowman vases, and candy cane themed options. Gather chalkboard paint, sandpaper, a paintbrush, chalk, and wax paper to give your painted Mason jars a distressed look. Working over the wax paper, add the first coat of chalkboard paint. Allow the paint to dry completely and then add a second coat, if desired. Once dried, sand the exterior of the jar, especially at places where there is a raised logo and at the mouth of the jar. To finish the look, rub the entire jar with chalk. Wipe away the excess chalk dust and do one more application of chalk. When these steps are finished, you’ve got yourself a vintage vase!

Glass Jar Photo Frames – You can turn Mason jars into picture frames to add a modern edge to any décor. There are two main ways to bring this vision to life. First, print out the images in sizes that will display fully within the Mason jar. Second, hold the jar opening upside down and insert the image. You will then be able to place the jar on any ledge, desk, or shelf for display. The other option is to insert your image into the Mason jar with the jar sitting upright. Next, pour enough vegetable oil inside the jar to cover the image completely. Add some dried flowers to the oil and tighten the lid. The vegetable oil will allow the image to be suspended in the jar without doing any damage to the photo.

Seasonal Snow Globes – Create a mini winter wonderland within a Mason jar in just a few steps. Using waterproof glue, attach a few small holiday figurines such as pine trees and reindeers to the inside of the Mason jar lid. Fill the jar with water, silver glitter, and a few drops of glycerin, if you want to make the glitter fall more slowly. Place the lid on the jar and screw the cap on. Turn the jar over, shake, and you’ve got a snow globe. (You can also do this project without water in the jar and use the finished product as décor on the table or around the house.)

Liquid Soap Dispenser – You’ll need a Mason jar (with the lid), liquid soap, a hammer, nail, hot glue gun, and spray paint if you want to add some color to the jar. Punch a hole in the lid for the soap pump using the nail and hammer – start with a small hole since you can always make it bigger. Spray-paint the outside of the lid pieces if desired, and fill the jar with soap. Hot glue the dispenser around the base of the pump. Now, your dispenser is ready for use!