Monday, September 9, 2013

Baby Food Jar Week: Tea Candle Holders

I have a bunch of baby food jars--half a closet shelf bunch. (The other half is full of toilet paper tubes, but that is a subject for another day). I have collected these jars faithfully knowing that they would be so useful. Then, I failed to actually use them mostly because I didn't know what to use them for.

I have decided to force myself to use all these fantastic jars by declaring this week Baby Food Jar Week. I will make a post about one use for baby food jars per day until Friday. Some of them are ideas I came up with, some of them are things I was inspired to do by someone else, and some of them are somewhere in between.

Today's use is as a cute little tea candle holder. There are millions of ideas for ways to make candle holders out of these little jars. You can use Mod Podge to put tissue paper on the outside of the jar like in this post from Tinker Lab. Or you can put doilies around the outside of the jar like in this post from Our Mush Push. Or you can use rub on transfers like in this post from Finding My Aloha. Or...well, you get the idea.

There are a million more ideas out there; however, I pioneered my own, possibly because when I first decided something had to be done about these jars, my internet was not working on my computer (the hard drive is about to go and sometimes there are funny symptoms as a result).

I began with the very simple idea of just painting the jars with acrylic paint. They were not to be candle holders exactly at this point, just cute jars. I knew the acrylic paint would rub off the glass so I decided to do it inside. The problem with this is, well, have you ever tried to paint something inside a jar? It is kind of hard. So on to plan B.

Which didn't work either, but I won't bore you with the details. The important thing is it led to plan C, which led to modified plan C, which is as follows:

First, I cut out little shapes from wax paper. I did leaves, but you could do anything. I also did this freehand, but you could use a stencil. You might even be able to use a paper punch, though I am not sure how well the wax paper will punch out. If you find out, let me know.

Next, I painted the shapes the color I wanted them to be and stuck them onto the inside of the jar while they were still wet with the paint side to the glass. The paint is all the glue you need for them to stick.

Finally, I cleaned up any smudged paint with a damp paper towel. I dabbed at it with small amounts of wiping. If you can't get everything in this stage don't worry; acrylic paint cleans off of glass after drying as well. A damp paper towel and your fingernail should do the trick here.

After making a few autumn leave jars, I thought of trying snowflakes. I am pretty good at cutting out snowflakes (if I do say so myself). These could be really cute for a winter wedding reception. I think it turned out rather well, but I have to warn the snowflakes were a lot harder than the leaves in every step--cutting, painting, placing, and cleaning up.

To answer your unasked question: I have not had any problem with the wax paper catching fire. I have not burned candles in them for hours on end either, but I don't think it will be a problem. Furthermore, if the wax paper does catch fire I can't imagine it burning for more than a couple seconds whilst staying completely contained inside the jar.

See the rest of Baby Food Jar Week:
Storage Vessels
Christmas Ornaments
Coin Sorter

This post was featured at Tatertots and Jello.


  1. I am very impressed with your snowflake cutting out, painting, and placing skills. These are very cute! I am excited to see the rest of baby food jar week!

    1. Thanks, Alysa. I really like the snowflake one too.

  2. I love how your jars came out -- they are so cute! I have jars that I am saving to make candle holders for my patio,since my patio has no real lighting. I am thinking of mod podging real leaves to the outside of the jars, since I need something I won't mind if it gets ruined by the weather!

    1. Thanks so much. That sounds like a great idea!


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