By Emily Floyd
If you’re like most people who live and buy things no doubt you have run through your fair share of glass jars and bottles. Most people throw them away without a second thought. Some people actually do save them compile them to send them to a recycling to redeem for cash. Good for you if that’s what you’re doing! But you might want to set aside a couple of jars after reading this before sending them off to be melted and reused. If you want to channel your inner hobbyists/artisan crafter then grab a seat and check out the tips below to give you some great ideas. Hopefully this will give you enough reason to recycle your glass bottles and jars if you haven’t been doing so. This is not exactly a detailed ‘how-to-‘ but hopefully it will whet your appetite enough to try something new with glass jars you may already have or bring a reason to buy some for that next project.
Mason Jar Terrarium
Have a piece of outdoor living inside. People have made beautiful terrariums using simple items so get creative! You will need a clean glass jar, soil, rocks, seeds, and whatever you wish to decorate with. This is a great idea for decorating open window sills where there is a lot of sunlight or a fun project for kids. For more creative ideas, you will find a plethora online.
Booze Anyone? Vodka Infusions! Mmmmm
Use a glass jar or bottle of any size to do this and impress your friends. This is something glass jars works best for! And it’s a great reason to invite friends over as well and serve up some tasty organic infused vodka. This is a healthier alternative for some of the other infusions you may find in the store. All of them contain fillers, and unpronounceable chemicals that are pretty scary once you find out what it really is. Try this natural and safer alternative. Simply get a clean glass jar, a funnel, a cheese cloth (for straining) and whatever fruit, herbs or veggies you decide to infuse.
Cut up your fruits or veggies in chunks and poke holes several times into the pieces. For herbs you obviously don’t need to do this. Put them into the container, fill it with vodka and let it steep for 2-3 days. Afterwards strain your concoction with the cheese cloth a couple times to get out as many grit and floating pieces as possible. You may need to practice a couple times to get the amount of flavor you want infused but this is a great starter to get you doing. Experiment and try new combos! You can try lemon and cucumber, basil and pomegranate, whole vanilla beans, pear or anything you like! You can also mix this with a little simple syrup and soda water to add pop. Get experimental and try fun combos! Drink and enjoy!
Style Your Own Painted Vase
This is a very easy project to do on your own or with other crafters and hobbyists. These bottles can also be used to decorate events or your home or garden. Simply get some glass jars or glass bottles of your choice. You can choose to make a white vase or any color you like. Make sure you clean your jar and dry it thoroughly. Take a little oil based and pour it into the jar. You shouldn’t need much for regular sized wine bottles or similar sized glass bottles. For larger glass jars, of course use more. Put a lid on it and swivel it around several times until glass is fully colored by the paint. Pour out any excess and let dry. Voila! You may now insert flowers, plants or anything you wish. You can also paint or further decorate the outside of the vase as well. There are some beautiful examples of this on the Internet.
Make A Sun Jar
I thought this was a pretty cool idea. This is a fun craft you can place in your home as a night light, you can use it for camping trips, or more. What you will need of course is a glass jar of your choice, preferably one with a lid. You may also use a plastic container, its really put to you. You will need a solar light, glass jar, rechargeable battery, blu tak and tracing paper. Get creative and have fun!
Colored Sand Paperweight Jar
This makes beautiful paperweight. Kids also love it as it makes for pretty cool eye candy. There are various mediums you can use besides sand. You may use sugar or even salt if prefer not to use sand. You can buy pre-colored sand or you may go a more fun route and color the sand yourself! There are two ways you can color sand. An easy way is to use colored chalk. Simply put sand in a bowl and grind chalk against the sand until color is thoroughly mixed. Another way it so use a few drops of food coloring. You can use food coloring for salt, sand or sugar. Food coloring will add a deeper colors. Chalk is best for pastels. Have fun!
Pet Project: Snails
This is another project kids will love. This will teach children the importance of being careful and properly caring for other forms of life. Caring for a snail will be a great learning experience. Snails in particular will revert into their shell when temperature or outward conditions are not suitable. They will not come out until conditions are right for them. A large glass jar such as a mayonnaise jar or larger will be suitable for this project. You will need to store food such as leaves and other greenery and they will need a vent for air. When it is time to change the habitat you will know, as the snail will not come out of his shell. Try this out with your little one and have fun!