The humble jam jar might not be the most obvious choice of raw material for a crafting session, but with a bit of imagination, a box of scraps, glue and odd-and-ends, it makes the perfect base for some eco-friendly craft making for the whole family! Easy and low cost, make a start by saving your used jars today and put away in your rainy day cupboard or craft box for some fun, interesting projects for children (and adults!) of all ages!
Why Jam Jars?
Jam jars are a great eco-friendly, reusable recourse for kids’ ‘makes’ – they are a manageable size, can be easily dish washed or sterilized before use to ensure clean, safe crafting, and their thickness makes them fairly safe for table-top work (obviously take care on unstable surfaces, and in the event of a crack, no matter how hairline or small, dispose of the jar via the recycling bin). They are also very easy to come by – ask friends or relatives to save them for you, or, if you don’t routinely buy preserves, purchase your jars direct from a glass merchant or kitchen store.
What Can We Do With Them?
Believe it or not, there are lots of fun and imaginative things you can do with your used jam jars! You will undoubtedly come up with your own simple, quick and easy projects to suit the ages of your children, but straight forward ideas could include painting them with glass paints to make pretty pen pots or containers for cotton wool balls, make up brushes or small kitchen tools. Make an effective candle holder by dropping in a tea-light and decorating the outside of the jar with a stained-glass effect for a stunning, reflective finish when the tea light is lit.
For different seasons, you can easily make appropriate jam jar gifts: at Christmas time, you could make a snow shaker, with glitter and a snowman figure – simply glue a firm seal around the lid after closing to keep the contents secure!
Create a pretty Easter scene with a spring-flower painted jar – think daffodils, snowdrops or tulips, and fill with mini eggs or other small chocolate treats.
Beach and miniature garden scenes can also be made – with a bit of patience – inside a jam jar – experiment with sand, shells and small pebbles for a fun effect. Use oasis and artificial flowers to make an enclosed flower-in-a-vase ornament.
Decorated Jam Jars
Use a variety of paints, pens and fabrics to decorate your jars – ribbons, raffia, artificial flowers, card toppers and beads can all be easily glued on to jars, and when finished, they make for an unusual ‘gift bag’ for small items, such as jewellery, home made biscuits or sweets, or small toys.
Children can personalise their jars to make useful storage for their bedrooms, tying in the decoration with their colour schemes, or reflecting their hobbies and interests. Given their dimensions, the jars make the perfect storage solution for small ‘bits and pieces’ that children love to hoard!