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In addition to picking up goodies to share with you in my store, I’m also out there looking for items to use in my upcoming wedding. The use of mason jars has become very popular with green brides looking for ways to recycle with their décor, as well as rustic themed weddings. While you can find mason jars in every hue and size for sale on places like Etsy, it’s also easy to create them on your own.

Mason jars, freshly painted and drying.

Our colors are teal blue and yellow, and so I went to my local Michael’s and picked up some Vitrea glass paint in those colors, as well as some paint thinner. If you use the Vitera thinner, the best ratio is 2 parts paint to 8 parts thinner. Michael’s sells another brand of glass paint thinner, if you use this instead, you’ll need significantly less.

Vitrea glass paint in our wedding colors

I’ve tried all sorts of ways to apply the paint onto the mason jars. Between rags, sponges, and brushes, I’ve found for this project, where you want an even coating throughout, it’s best to use a sponge. A brush will cause streaking, and a rag will absorb too much of the paint. Be sure to apply a coat to the inside of the jar first, and then the outside.

Glass paint in a container with sponge

Make sure you use a large enough container to mix your paints, glass paint can be difficult to get off of your hands and furniture!

Allow the jars to dry for 24 hours. I’ve tried drying them right side up and upside down, and it seems like drying them right side up causes less pooling, especially in larger jars. The final step is to bake the jars at 325 degrees for 45 minutes to seal in the color.

A subtle, light coat is all you need to create understated beauty in a mason jar.

Some people add metal hangers or other embellishments, but I plan on keeping mine as simple as possible. We’ll probably add candles to them, using them both in the church and at the reception to decorate the tables.

The great thing is all the wonderful ideas there are for use after the wedding. I’m thinking of attaching a few to posts to use in the garden. Not only will they sparkle in the sun light, they’ll do double duty as rain gauges!

If you love the idea of using mason jars but just don’t have the time to collect and paint them yourself, check out these listings by reputable sellers on Etsy: