All my life, and to this day, mason jars have been a staple of life at my grandmother’s house. Leftover potato soup? Put it in a mason jar. Pocket change laying all over the house? Put it in a mason jar. Spider on top of the clothes dryer? Trap him under a jar and call one of the grand-kids in for removal. So I must admit that my uses for mason jars are skewed with nostalgic memories of childhood. But my grandmother was on to something. Mason jars are an amazing example of simple perfection. They are sturdy, but not too heavy, and have a charming, no-frills design. Although my grandmother’s uses are strictly utilitarian, there are many more fun mason jar ideas out there, which I’ll share with you today. From mason jar mugs, to crafty home accessories, these diy mason jar ideas are (close to) the best thing ever.
Mason Jar Vase
While you’re out enjoying your iced tea, cut a few fresh flowers to brighten up your living room. Home grown flowers tend to have shorter stems than what you would buy at the market, so mason jars are the perfect vase. Bunch your flowers together into a fist-sized bouquet, and cut the bottoms of the stems to even them up. Fill your mason jar vase about half way with water, and rest your little bouquet inside. Decorating your mason jar vase with a ribbon or craft paint brings a homey touch, and adds to the rustic look of the jars.
Mason Jar Picture Frame
Mason jar gifts are highly portable, and perfect for creating a crafty, do-it-yourself presentation. Everyone loves pictures, and the clear glass walls of mason jars make a really cool photo frames. Just take two standard size photo prints, and gently roll them up, photo side out. Slip the photos into the jar, and presto! Your pictures will stand up and show through the glass jar, almost like a shadow box. I like to put candy or a small gift inside the mason jar picture frame, so when the recipient opens the lid, there’s an extra surprise.
Mason Jar Soap Dispenser
Plastic bottles lets face it, look cheap. A mason jar soap dispenser on the other hand is strong, and hold more than your average disposable container. Using mason jars will make sure your soap doesn’t blow away outdoors or at the camp site, and will contribute to the old-fashioned, family atmosphere. This is especially helpful if you buy in bulk, so you can avoid packing that massively tacky 64oz tub of hand/dish soap. A pump through the lid of the mason jar soap dispenser also makes for easy no-mess squirting right onto your hand. BONUS: Can also be filled with hand sanitizer for instant cleanliness in the outdoors.
Mason Jar Lights
So, this string of lights isn’t made of real mason jars, but it’s really cool. These plastic replicas of colored mason jars create a fun, bright strand to light up the evening on any porch or patio. You can also create diy mason jar lights by covering real mason jars with brightly colored spray paint, and inserting a battery operated touch light to create a similar glow. Now that I think of it, a collection of mason jar lights would look great as decorations for a summer barbecue. Time to start brewing the iced tea!
Floating Mason Jar Candle Holders
DIY mason jar ideas make fun craft projects for the whole family, and floating mason jar candle holders are super easy and versatile. Drop a few marbles or stones into the bottom of your jars, then fill three-quarters full with water. Find a home for your jar on a table or counter, then once in place, add a floating candle and light it. The candlelight will reflect through the seams and embossed areas of the mason jar, creating a beautiful glow, and the mouth of the jar will help keep the flame safely contained. If you don’t have any floating candles, just add a few more marbles, skip the water, and use tea lights. Feel free to decorate, but avoid adding any fabric or paper to the jar, just to be safe.
Room Scent Fresheners
One of my favorite diy mason jar ideas is to mix up all natural room scents. Use your favorite combination of citrus fruit, fresh herbs, spices, and essential oils. Loosely fill the glass jars with the solid ingredients, then add 3 or 4 drops of essential oil. Natural vanilla or almond extract works too. From here, you have two options. If you want to keep them for later use fill with cold water, seal the lid tightly, and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. When you are ready for fragrance, simply set it on the counter until it reaches room temperature, then place on a candle warmer. If you are ready to smell your elixir right away, fill the jar with very hot, but not boiling water. Within a few minutes, your home will be filled with a captivating aroma. You can then place the jar on a candle warmer to keep the scents going longer.
Mason Jar Herb Garden
Home grown, fresh herbs are handy to have around, and mason jars are the perfect glass containers for the job. When starting herbs from seed, it’s important to keep the moisture trapped in the soil to give them a good start. You can use the lid to cover until sprouting begins, and the clear glass walls let light in, while allowing you to see the moisture levels in the soil. Once your little green plants start budding through the surface of the soil, just remove the lids, and place the jars in any sunny window for an eye-catching inside garden.
This is by no means a ground-shaking idea, but iced tea in a mason jar is, in my opinion, the only way to drink iced tea. The cold glass jar against the palm of your hand. The reflections of sunlight coming through the walls of the molded mason jar and bouncing an amber glow off of the ice cubes. Chunks of lemon floating inside as you raise the threaded mouth of the jar to your thirsty lips. DIY mason jar mugs take this experience to the next level, adding handles to make the jars easy to grip, and carry through the garden as you bask in the summer sun and say, “Good afternoon!” to passers by.