How to Decorate Glass Jars

Updated February 21, 2017

Recycling does not always mean putting something in the recycle bin. It can also mean reusing something in a new way. If you have a bunch of glass jars, consider washing them out and decorating them. Then you can use them in any number of ways, from gifts to candle holders. If you'd like to know more about how to decorate your jars, read on.

Decide how you want the jar to be used. Will it hold a gift, such as homemade chilli seasonings or cookie-making ingredients? Perhaps you will place a small candle in it, or flowers. Maybe you will even make it into a fishbowl. Whatever you decide will determine how you will decorate it.

Most jars have an edge on top where the lid screws on. The edge is somewhat unattractive. Cover it up by hot-gluing a ribbon around the top of the jar. If you saved the lid, you could also cover it with fabric and reuse it. This is especially useful if you are going to give the jar as a gift and are fill it with cooking ingredients.

It is easy to add glitter to a jar--and it gives it a festive look. Use spray-on glue glitter or dip the jar into a mixture of white glue and water, then dip it in glitter. Add a small candle to the bottom of the jar. When the candle is lit, the jar will really sparkle.

Add stickers. Stick small heart stickers all over a jar filled with candy for a great Valentine's Day gift. Alternately, use letter stickers to spell out someone's name, then fill the jar with popcorn and give the person the jar.

Wrap the jar. Cover it with tissue paper and tie the paper in place with a ribbon at the rim of the top of the jar. Carefully add water and flowers for an instant, colourful vase.

Paint the jar. You can buy paint that will stick to glass at any craft store. Use a paintbrush to create an abstract design, or make it more personal. Add some coloured marbles to the bottom of the jar and display it as a decorative piece.


Small baby food glass jars make great votive candle holders.


Large candles will heat up a glass jar, so only use small votive candles.

Things You'll Need

  • Empty, clean glass jars of any size
  • Hot-glue gun and glue
  • Votive candles
  • Decorative glass pieces or marbles
  • Glitter
  • Glue
  • Ribbons
  • Stickers
  • Tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Other decorative accessories
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