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Decorating Glass Jars: 5 Simple Techniques and Ideas

decorating glass jars is simple with our techniques and ideas

Decorating glass jars is a fun and versatile way to breathe new life into your surroundings. With countless design ideas and a myriad of materials at your disposal, you can turn regular containers into eye-catching pieces that add a touch of creativity to any room. Whether it’s repurposing old jars or adding a personal touch to new ones, there’s no shortage of possibilities when it comes to these resourceful DIY projects.

From simple washi tape patterns to intricate decoupage designs, you can customize your glass jars to suit your taste and match your home’s décor. Even the smallest embellishments, such as buttons or embroidery thread, can make a significant difference in the final product, transforming your glass containers into stylish and functional pieces. These unique decorations can serve as attractive flower vases, vintage-inspired oil lamps, or simply elegant displays in their own right.

With a little imagination and a few basic supplies, you can turn ordinary glass jars into extraordinary pieces that reflect your creativity and enhance your living space. Whether for personal use or as thoughtful, handmade gifts, these charming decorations showcase the endless potential of upcycling and the power of turning everyday items into beautiful art.

Types of Glass Jars

Mason Jars

Mason jars are a popular choice for decorating projects due to their versatility and classic design. These jars are typically made of thick, transparent glass and feature a two-piece lid with a screw-on band to seal the jar. Mason jars are suitable for various uses, such as storing dry ingredients, preserving fruits and vegetables, and serving as decorative candle holders. Mason jars come in various sizes, shapes, and colors, providing endless creative possibilities for decorating.

Pickle Jars

Pickle jars are another type of glass jar that can be upcycled for decoration. Usually found in larger sizes, these jars once contained pickles, olives, or other preserved foods. They feature a wide mouth, making them ideal for storing and displaying items such as bath salts, craft materials, or even vase fillers like potpourri. Their unique shape and size offer a distinct visual appeal that adds character to any room. Decorating pickle jars can involve painting the exterior, using washi tape, or wrapping them with string.

Pickle Jar Decorating Ideas:rong>

  • Wrap the jar with twine or yarn for a rustic vibe
  • Fill with seashells and sand to create a beach-themed decoration
  • Paint the exterior with chalkboard paint for a customizable message display


Glass vases are an elegant and versatile option for decorating with glass jars. They come in various shapes and sizes, from small bud vases to large floor vases, making them perfect for any room or aesthetic. The transparent nature of glass allows the contents to shine, whether it be beautiful fresh flowers or eye-catching decorative objects. Vases can also be used as candle holders or be painted, frosted, or etched with intricate designs. Due to their simple yet timeless appeal, glass vases make an excellent addition to any home decor project.

Glass Vase Decorating Tips:

  • Use colored glass paint or glass markers to create unique designs
  • Arrange a collection of different-sized vases for a stunning centerpiece
  • Fill vases with water and floating candles for a romantic ambiance

In conclusion, the three types of glass jars that include mason jars, pickle jars, and glass vases offer countless decorating possibilities. Choose the one that best suits your needs and let your creativity flow to transform them into eye-catching and functional pieces for your home.


Essential Decorating Supplies

When it comes to decorating glass jars, having the right supplies on hand can make all the difference. In this section, we’ll cover the essential categories of supplies you’ll need: adhesives, design and decorating materials, and tools.


Adhesives are crucial for attaching various design elements to your glass jars. Some popular options include:

  • Mod Podge: A versatile glue and sealant, perfect for adhering paper and fabric to glass surfaces.
  • Decoupage: Similar to Mod Podge, but typically more transparent, making it ideal for layering and creating intricate designs.
  • Glue Dots: Handy for small embellishments and offer strong hold without mess.
  • Masking Tape: Useful for creating clean lines and temporary positioning, but not suitable for long-term adhesion.

Design and Decorating Materials

The design materials you choose will determine the look and feel of your decorated glass jars. Consider using:

  • Washi Tape: Available in a variety of colors and patterns, washi tape can be used for minimalist or intricate designs.
  • Scrapbook Paper: Perfect for creating custom shapes and designs to adhere to your jars.
  • String: Twine or yarn can be wrapped around or tied to jars, offering a rustic or cozy aesthetic.
  • Decorations: Think outside the box with different types of embellishments, such as gemstones, beads, or even fabric.


Equipping yourself with the right tools will make your glass jar decorating project more enjoyable and efficient. Essential tools include:

  • Scissors: A sharp pair of scissors will make cutting materials like paper, fabric, or tape much easier.
  • Craft Knife: Useful for precise cutting and creating clean edges when working with adhesive materials.
  • Brushes: Choose a variety of sizes for applying adhesives, sealants, and any paint or other mediums you may use.
  • Ruler: For accurate measurements and straight lines, a ruler is a must-have tool in any DIY project.

By keeping these essential decorating supplies on hand, you’ll be prepared to transform any ordinary glass jar into a unique and eye-catching piece of art.

Decoration Techniques


One of the most popular and versatile ways to decorate glass jars is by painting them. A wide range of paints can be used, such as acrylic, chalk, and spray paint. This technique allows for endless possibilities in terms of colors and patterns. To start, make sure the jar’s surface is clean and dry. Apply a primer if desired, then apply the paint using a brush or a sponge. Allow each coat to dry fully before adding another if needed. Remember that darker colors may need more coats to achieve a consistent finish.


Decoupage is a technique that involves adhering decorative paper or fabric to the surface of the jar using a special adhesive, such as Mod Podge. Begin by selecting your desired pattern or image, then cut it out to fit the jar. Apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to the jar’s surface and carefully adhere the paper or fabric. Smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles with a soft cloth or your fingers, then apply another layer of Mod Podge on top to seal it. Allow it to dry fully before using or displaying your jar.

Twine or Ribbon

Adding twine, yarn, or ribbon to your glass jar can create a rustic, cozy, or chic look, depending on your choice of materials. To attach twine or ribbon, start by applying a small dab of hot glue or another strong adhesive to the jar’s surface. Attach the end of your material – be sure it is secure – and begin wrapping it around the jar, either in a tight spiral pattern or more loosely for a relaxed appearance. Experiment with different materials and layering combinations for a unique, textured look.

Washi Tape

Washi tape is a versatile and easy-to-use option for decorating glass jars. Available in a wide array of colors, patterns, and widths, this decorative adhesive tape is perfect for adding a pop of color or a fun pattern to your jar. Begin by cleaning your jar’s surface and selecting your desired washi tape. Carefully apply the tape along the jar, either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. An advantage of washi tape is its flexibility: it’s easy to reposition or remove if you want to try a different technique. For added durability, you can apply a light layer of Mod Podge or clear sealant over the tape to protect your design.

Glass Jar Uses

Organizing and Storage

Glass jars are versatile and practical for organizing and storing items in various areas of your home. In the kitchen, use glass jars to store spices, baking ingredients, and other pantry essentials in a visually appealing manner. Besides the kitchen, you can repurpose glass jars for organizing craft supplies, hair accessories, or small office items, making it easy to find what you need quickly.

Etsy and Selling

If you have a creative side, you can transform glass jars into unique and attractive products to sell on platforms like Etsy. Offer exclusive, personalized items like painted jars, terrariums, or intricately designed candle holders. These one-of-a-kind glass jar creations can serve as distinctive gift ideas for shoppers looking for something special.

DIY Gifts and Decor

Glass jars can also be used to create DIY gifts and decorations for various occasions. For instance, turn a simple jar into a beautiful flower vase or a charming centerpiece by adding paint, buttons, or twine. Glass jars can be repurposed as party favors filled with candies, bath salts, or tea blends, adding a personal touch to your living areas or special events.

Project Ideas

Decorating glass jars can be a fun and creative way to repurpose old containers. Here are some project ideas that will help you transform ordinary glass jars into functional and beautiful objects.

Candle Holders

Turn your glass jars into unique candle holders. Melt beeswax, add your choice of essential oils, and pour the mixture into the jars. You can also decorate the outside of the jars with paint, stickers, or other embellishments to personalize your candle holders.


Create your own miniature ecosystem with a terrarium. Start by placing pebbles or gravel at the bottom of the jar for drainage, then add a layer of activated charcoal. Next, add potting soil and choose small plants or mosses to arrange inside the jar. Finish by watering the plants and sealing the jar.

Flower Vases

Glass jars can make beautiful and inexpensive flower vases. Decorate the jars with glass paint or use decoupage techniques to add printed images. Assemble jars of various sizes and shapes to create an interesting and unique centerpiece for your table.


Turn a glass jar into a practical pincushion. Fill the jar with colorful buttons, beads, or sewing supplies, and glue a fabric-covered cushion to the lid. The cushion will hold your pins, while the jar can be used for storage.

Office Supply Holders

Organize your desk with glass jar office supply holders. You can use jars of various sizes to store pens, pencils, paper clips, or rubber bands. Decorate the jars with washi tape, string, or other crafting materials to match your office decor.

Oil Lamps

Create a rustic oil lamp with a glass jar. Fill the jar with lamp oil, insert a wick into the oil, and secure the wick with a metal or cork lid. You can also decorate the jar with twine, buttons, or other materials to give it a unique look.

Step-by-Step Tutorials

Creating a Jar Terrarium

A jar terrarium is a beautiful and low-maintenance way to bring nature into your home. Start by selecting a clean, empty glass jar with a lid. Add a 1-2 inch layer of pebbles or small rocks at the bottom for drainage. On top of the rocks, add a thin layer of activated charcoal to prevent mold growth. Next, add a layer of potting soil, making sure it’s deep enough for the roots of your chosen plants.

Choose small plants that thrive in a moist environment, such as ferns, mosses, or mini orchids. Carefully plant them in the soil, arranging them to your liking. Finish by adding decorative elements like small stones or figurines before placing the lid on the jar. Keep your terrarium in a well-lit area, but avoid direct sunlight to prevent overheating.

Decorating a Jar Candle Holder

Transform a plain glass jar into a unique candle holder with some simple decorating techniques. First, clean and dry the jar thoroughly. One option is to use washi tape in different patterns to create a visually interesting design. Wrap the tape around the jar in varying widths and angles or cut pieces to create shapes.

Another option is to use paint to create an eye-catching candle holder. Select paints specifically designed for glass, such as acrylic enamel paints, and use a brush or sponge to apply the paint. You can create a marbled effect by mixing multiple colors in a ramekin before applying to the jar. Once the paint is fully dry, place a tea light or votive candle inside to enjoy your new creation.

Making a Vase from Glass Jars

Repurpose a glass jar into a stylish vase by following these steps. First, ensure the jar is completely clean and free of labels or residue. Choose a paint color that complements your home décor and use a high-quality brush to apply the paint to the outside of the jar. For a more rustic look, use twine or embroidery thread to wrap around the jar, securing it with glue as you go.

Allow the paint or glue to dry completely before filling your new vase with water and adding your favorite flowers. For a personal touch, consider painting or attaching small embellishments like buttons, beads, or small metal charms to the jar’s surface. With minimal effort, you can create a charming and functional vase from a simple glass jar.

Tips for Success

Choosing the Right Jar

When selecting glass jars for your decorating project, consider the size, shape, and the intended purpose of the jar to ensure a successful outcome. Large jars are great for storing dry goods or displaying decorative objects, while smaller jars work for storing spices or crafting materials. Ensure the jar opening width can accommodate what you’d like to store or display in it. Remember, various jar sizes can also create a unique centerpiece arrangement.

Safety Considerations

Working with glass jars requires some safety precautions, especially if you plan to cut, paint, or handle them in various ways:

  • Always wear gloves when handling glass with sharp edges or cutting tools
  • Use a mask to avoid inhaling fumes while painting or using solvents
  • Make sure your work area is well-ventilated
  • Keep children and pets away from your work area

Additionally, if you plan to use the jar for food storage, ensure it has been thoroughly cleaned and that the paint or glue used for decoration is safe for food contact.

Labeling and Organizing

A well-organized space with labeled jars not only looks aesthetically appealing but also helps you quickly find and access your items. Take the following steps to achieve effective labeling and organization:

  1. Decide on a labeling method: You may use printed labels, washi tape with a written label on it, or even hand-painted lettering for a personalized touch.
  2. Include relevant information: Depending on the contents of your jar, ensure that the label contains necessary information like an expiration date, weight, or an email address for inquiries.
  3. Organize jars based on frequency of use. Place frequently used jars in easily accessible areas, while the less frequently used jars can be stored in less prominent areas or lower shelves.
  4. Use colored or patterned labels or caps to group similar items together, such as baking supplies, spices, or craft materials. This will make it visually easier to locate items in your space.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can confidently decorate and organize your glass jars for a visually appealing and functional space.


In conclusion, decorating glass jars is a creative and enjoyable activity that can turn simple containers into beautiful and functional pieces of art. By using various techniques and materials, such as washi tape, glass paint, and decoupage, you can customize your jars to suit your personal tastes and preferences.

Exploring different ideas for jar decorations will not only give your jars a new lease on life, but will also add a personal touch to your home, workspace, or even as gifts for friends and family. You can use these decorated jars for various purposes, such as flower vases, pen holders, or centerpieces, creating an attractive and functional element to any space.

One of the benefits of using glass jars for decoration is their versatility, as they are available in many different sizes and shapes. This allows you to be even more creative with your designs, making unique displays through combinations of large glass jars with other smaller jars or interesting contents.

With a confident, knowledgeable, and clear approach to decorating glass jars, you can turn ordinary containers into eye-catching and practical additions to your surroundings. Furthermore, the sustainable aspect of reusing glass jars aligns with a zero-waste lifestyle, making it an environmentally conscious choice. So, let your creativity run wild and explore the endless possibilities that decorating glass jars has to offer!

Frequently Asked Questions

How to decorate glass jars for candles?

Decorating glass jars for candles is simple and fun. One method is to use washi tape in different patterns around the jar. Alternatively, you can wrap string, embroidery thread, or yarn around the jar to create a unique design. Fill the jar with candle wax and insert a wick to complete your creation.

Easy mason jar craft ideas?

Mason jars can be dressed up in many ways. For a quick and easy craft, use decoupage to decorate your jars with attractive paper cut-outs from magazines or scrapbook paper. Another idea is to fill jars with colorful layers of sand, small rocks, or even candy for a simple yet eye-catching decoration.

Creative glass jar crafts for kids?

Glass jar crafts can be highly engaging for kids and help develop their creativity. Let them explore painting techniques on the surface of the jar, using acrylic paints and allowing them to dry completely. They can also decorate the jars with stickers, glittery tape, or create their own paper collages.

Glass jar decorating techniques?

There are numerous techniques for decorating glass jars, such as painting directly onto the glass surface, using glass paint markers or glass paint, for a customized and personalized look. Another method involves wrapping twine, ribbon, or fabric around the jar for a textured and stylish appearance.

Best materials for decorating mason jars?

The best materials for decorating mason jars will depend on your personal style and the project you’re working on. Washi tape, twine, paint, and decoupage are popular choices due to their versatility, easy application, and wide range of available colors and patterns.

How to dress up mason jars?

Dressing up mason jars can be done in various ways, from a simple ribbon tied around its neck to more elaborate designs using paint or other materials. Consider using glass apothecary jars filled with decorative items like balsa wood flowers or scrabble tiles as an interesting centerpiece or display.

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