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Painting old jars and bottles

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Paintedmasonjars.png

Old jars and bottles can be reused as vases for flowers or holders for all sorts of objects such as utensils, pencils, tools, etc. If there are jars and bottles in shapes and sizes that you can see being useful around the house and yard, consider keeping them for this repurposing project.

Preparation[edit]

Choose the jars and bottles you want to keep. You can paint one or many, and they can be all the same or a variety of different shapes and sizes, just as long as you've a use for them.

Clean the jars and bottles thoroughly with warm water and dishwashing liquid. Allow to dry before painting.

Prepare the painting area by laying down sheets of newspaper. If working outdoors, add some weights to the paper to stop it from blowing away if there's a sudden breeze.

Painting[edit]

Use acrylic paints or paint suitable for glass. Choose colours that you like and that will suit wherever you intend keeping the finished jars or bottles.

Working over the newspaper, paint the first layer of paint on the exterior of the jar or bottle. Repeat for each jar or bottle you're painting. Allow to dry, then paint the next coat. Allow to dry. Determine whether another coat is needed or not.

If you want to add designs, such as stencilled pictures or letters, wait for the final coat to dry before painting on the design.

Wash the brush after you've finished painting. Dispose of the paint water in a used can and put into your usual garbage; don't pour it down the drain. If you're concerned about tossing liquid into the bin, leave the can in the sun, and the rinse water will soon evaporate.

Using the finished artwork[edit]

You can do lots with painted jars and bottles. Jars will probably have more uses than bottles because of their wider necks but bottles are still good for flowers. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Add flowers for decoration; fill with water to keep the flowers fresh
  • Store cut herbs in the jar, with some water to keep them fresh
  • Add pencils, pens, rulers, etc. for a stationery tidy
  • Use a painted bottle to keep fragrance or incense sticks in
  • Keep bits and pieces in a painted jar
  • Give a gift in the painted jar or bottle.

Note that the painted jar or bottle is not food-safe; do not use for food or drink storage.