DIY Crafts

Published on August 18th, 2010 | by Becky Striepe


10 Glass Jar Crafts: Something for Everyone!

10 Glass Jar Crafts

Here are ten ways to reuse glass jars. From sand art to pickles, there are glass jar crafts here for everyone.

Next time you finish a jar of pasta sauce or scrape the last bit of jam onto your toast, you might want to think twice before tossing that precious glass jar into the recycle bin. Those empty glass jars are a great free way to launch all sorts of fun, upcycled glass jar crafts!

Removing the label can be a bit tricky sometimes so try soaking your jars overnight in warm, soapy water, then rub them with a coarse cloth. If that doesn’t work, orange oil works well for getting stubborn labels to budge. Once your jar is clean, there are endless ways you can reuse it. Here are ten ideas to get you started.

10 Glass Jar Crafts

1. Create Sand Art

Sand Art in Recycled Containers

This is a great project to do with the kiddos! Julie shows you how to make beautiful sand art with some reclaimed glass jars, colored sand, and a little creativity.

2. Infused Vodka

This is a more grown up project. You can create all sorts of awesome flavored vodkas in your old glass jars. Whip up a batch for a themed party or as gifts!

3. Make Your Own Hot Sauce

Peach Hot Sauce

Another food-related glass jar project; it’s easy and fun to make your own hot sauce! I just whipped up a tasty peach hot sauce and it made just enough to store it in an empty jar of peach preserves!

4. Toting Drinks

Etched Glass Jar.

If you’re a fan of No Impact Man, you’re probably familiar with his ultra cool reusable water bottle. To add a crafty twist, try etching your own design onto a set of reclaimed jars!

5. Spice Rack

Spice rack

Over at The Kitchn, they show how to turn smaller jars into a beautiful, magnetic spice rack!

6. Make a Sun Jar

Sun Jar

Instructables user cre8tor shows you how to repurpose a glass jar into a lovely, LED-powered light.

7. Add Interest to a Miniature Garden

Succulent Garden.

Flickr user photogirl7.1 turned a glass jar into a lovely centerpiece for a succulent garden. It looks like she used store bought marbles, but you could totally cover your jar in repurposed bits and pieces instead.

8. Make a Terrarium


Terrariums are fun to make and make lovely gifts, too. CRAFT has a great tutorial on how to make your own terrarium.

9. A Jar Full of Stars

Star Jar

Fill a glass jar with puffy origami stars or hearts, and you have an instant centerpiece. Here’s a video showing you how to make lucky, puffy origami stars.

10. Make Refrigerator Pickles


Empty glass jars are perfect for storing refrigerator pickles. Just a note: you can’t use repurposed jars for canning and general pickling. For that, you really need a Mason jar or something similar that will create a seal to make sure your canned foods are safe.

Do you have any favorite glass jar crafts? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

Image Credits: Terrariums, Creative Commons photo by exlibris. Sand Jar photo by Julie Finn. Hot sauce photo by Becky Striepe. Drinking Jar, Creative Commons photo by oaklandearthgirl. Spice Rack, Creative Commons photo by davidzaks. Sun Jar, Creative Commons photo by darkumber. Miniature Garden, Creative Commons photo by photogirl7.1. Terrariums, Creative Commons photo by exlibris. Jar of Stars, Creative Commons photo by leestababee, Pickles photo by Becky Striepe.

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .

21 Responses to 10 Glass Jar Crafts: Something for Everyone!

  1. linda says:

    hey check out joann’s craft for charity contest–i know you are not all about stores and such but i would ask that you would ask other crafty people to support Joshua house and Metropolitian Ministeries with handmade goodness! they have a announcement on their myspace page about it !

  2. Taylen says:

    along the lines of pickles and/or hot sauce – storing just about any homemade food…my parents used to collect both glass jars and bottles. jars for their salsa made from their garden and bottles for my dad’s homemade irish cream…mmmmmm so good! thanks for bringing back such great memories (and reminding me i need to get in on that this year!)

  3. Pingback: the queen of glass hearts | danikeith's blog

  4. Leannn says:

    I let my kids use jars for catching bugs.
    I sprout grains in glass, using a square of nylon screening as a straining lid.
    Baby food jars are great for storing little things: rubber bands, tacks, beads, etc.
    I painted my cupboards, but they get scuffed easily, so I put some of the paint in a baby food jar and store it in a high cupboard for quick touch-ups.
    Put whipping cream and a marble in a jar with a lid and have the kids shake it til it turns to butter.

  5. Garcia12 says:

    ahh i love the sand project 🙂

  6. I can’t remember where I saw it, but there was a post on making Easter decorations with glass jars. She soaked an old grapevine wreath in water to loosen it, and took just enough to fashion a little birds nest to fit the jar size.

    Next, she added a bit of craft moss into and around the little nest. Then she painted some old wooden easter eggs a really pretty turquoise-y blue, with brown speckles, and added them into the nest.

    So simple, nearly free, and really pretty! I saw another idea too, green-tinted coconut in the bottom of the jar, a nest made of no-bake cookie type mix, filled with egg candy and a “momma bird” Peep, with a painted lid and ribbon, as an Easter gift. Love it.

    I hate throwing away jars, they seem so, well, substantial, you know? Not garbage. So I am ALWAYS on the hunt for some new way to reuse them so that I can keep them 🙂

    Love your ideas here!

  7. We made these last year for my sister’s birthday at my parents property and they stayed up for the rest of the summer… will be making them for my own yard this spring now that we have one! They make the garden (which is being planted now) so pretty in the evening… you can tie the lid on too so that when you are done you just put the lid back on top and it keeps any rain or bugs out… I think we ended up with about 120 in total… It was a great group project! We used hemp twine, and it has a stretch so we had to tie them really tightly around the underside of the threads. It wasn’t planned either, so we were raiding everyone’s recycling boxes 🙂

    I will do a post on them sometime this week…

    • andrea of ffft says:

      Also, I think the sand in the bottom is pretty important and you are supposed to make sure that the twine isn’t tied right at the opening… it was about 16 inches above the flame of the tealight.

  8. Great article thanks for sharing!….I love this glass bottles. Thanks!…

  9. Pingback: How-to: Prep Reclaimed Glass Jars for Crafting

  10. Elena says:

    I decoupage glass jars and bottles and use them as home decoration

  11. Pingback: How-to: Another Way to Remove Labels from Glass Jars | Crafting a Green World

  12. Pingback: Kinkajou: Simplifying the Bottle Cutter | Crafting a Green World

  13. laura says:

    My daughter’s kindergarten class glued bits of orange contruction paper to empty baby food jars and then added faces to make jack-o-lanterns. They were adorable! Now, whenever my daughter sees small jars, she begs to make pumpkins! I’m not sure, but I think the teacher or a class volunteer got the idea from pinterest.

  14. Doreen Luck Salter says:

    I reuse all sizes and shapes of glass and plastic containers to make Snowmen. Put stones, old unpopped popcorn, rice or beans in plastic containers for weight. Then cover with fabric, old socks or paint for Snowman body. I have also put packing peanuts inside a clear glass container for a different look. The head can be Styrofoam, burnt out lightbulbs or wooden balls. I reuse the caps for the hats or any kind of fabric to make stocking hats, scarfs and use pom pomps, sequins, buttons for Snowman features. I collect sticks from my yard for the arms. I also decorate my Snowmen with hat brims and a button decoration, a small bird sitting on a hat or a stick arm or the arm can hold a candy cane, a broom, shovel, mittens, small toys or use small white pom poms for snowballs. The possibilities are endless. I use the small ones as ornaments. Be creative, let the kids help, relax, laugh and enjoy the season.

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