Friday, 22 July 2011

16 Ideas for Decorating Your Wedding with Glass Jars

Equality Wedding
Glass jars are god's gift to the No Impact Bride! They are free, recyclable & full of creative potential. They also look classic & fresh. Until you start collecting them you probably won't realise just how many we go through. It took me ten months to collect about 250 jars and bottles. I relied heavily on donations from my bridesmaid's kitchens so make sure they know you're in need. Once you have the jars, they're going to need a serious soak & scrub before they're ready to appear in your wedding. 

Cleaning Jars

Tip #1
Some labels will slide right off and some will cling on for dear life. If they're putting up a fight then chuck them in the recycling and move on! It's not worth fighting back when you're surrounded by so many other jars.

Tip #2 
We love spaghetti sauce jars because their labels slip right off! 

Tips #3
If the label is coming off but not easily or leaving behind sticky goop, scrap the glass with the blunt side of a kitchen knife. Scrub with a rough sponge afterwards.

Decide Each Jar's Destiny

Once the jars are clean, the fun can begin. They come in all shapes and sizes and this is inspiration in itself. 
As promised, here are 15 ideas:

1) Drinking Glasses
Perfect for iced-tea and lemonade at summer weddings where you can plop in a straw and sit on a hay-bale! Tie a tag around each jar so your guests can write their names on their glasses. Clean these jars very well and don't forget to provide pens!
Oh Lovely Day
2) Customise with Glass Paint. 
Using your wedding colours, paint pretty designs on your jars. With a tea-light inside, the colours will be cast onto the table. As a hanging lantern the colours will sparkle from above. If you customise jars and use them as drinking glasses then your guests will be able to recognise their jar amongst others on a table. These also make beautiful wedding favours for your guests.
3) Lanterns: Single and Garlands
Tie a loop of garden wire around the top of the jar to make a handle. One glass jar lantern can be hung from a branch or carried by bridesmaids/guests in a candlelit ceremony. Connect multiple jars with wire, leaving about a foot of free wire at each end of the strand, and hand them as a tea-light garland.
Faded Country

Modern Eco Homes
4) Flower Pots/Planters
You don't get more green than growing your own flowers! Fill your jars will soil & compost, sprinkle some seeds inside, place on a windowsill and water whenever the soil is dry. Read the seed packet to make sure you allow the flowers plenty of time to grow! Keep the flowers + dirt in the jars and use as terrarium-style centrepieces or live-bouquets. Being able to see the dirt/roots contributes a wholesome feeling to your wedding decor and has the potential to be a great conversation point. Live plants bring a 'fresh' element to both indoor and outdoor weddings. It's also a wonderful way to save money considering that a pack of 50 seeds is about £1.69. Just try and buy 50 flowers for that price! The best bit of all is that we get to honour fruitarian sentimentalities—we're encouraging life by not killing any plants!
The Full Bouquet

5) Photo Frames
This one's simple. Roll up a photo, slide it into a jar and let it open up. This is a very lovely way to display photographs of the bride & groom and their families & friends. You could even hang these photo jars amongst your lanterns.
Junk Garden Girl
6) Sweet & Spicy Jars 
Spice jars may seem pretty useless but don't despair! Hold onto the lids and fill these skinny spice jars with (vegetarian) sweets. These make wonderfully yummy wedding favours.
Lynlees Petite Cakes
7) Vintage Blue
Coat your jars in a thin layer of blue glass paint. It gives them a vintage mason-jar look. You can place them around as decoration just as they are (that's how awesome they look!) or use them for some of the other purposes listed here.
8) Dessert in a Jar
Jars are the perfect serving size for desserts like cream and berries, yogurt parfait or Jell-O. Clean these jars well, keep the lids and maybe attach a spoon. These could also be a take-home treat.
Oh Lovely Day
9) Flower Vases
Nothing complicated here! Pick your flowers and drop them into your jars. Pretty-it-up by decorating the jar with ribbon, twine, paper, doilies, lace etc...
Pieces of Bree
10) Hanging Floating Flower Vases
Prepare the jar with wire as if it were a lantern but instead of dropping a tea-light inside, pour in some water and drop in the top of a flower.

11) Spray Paint!
Glass paint is quite transparent but spray paint will cover your jars in a coat of solid colour. It almost ends up looking like coloured tin or china. If there is any lettering on the glass it will end up looking embossed. This is great for a vintage/shabby-chic wedding.

Oh Lovely Day

12) Collection of Pretties
Use your jars to display whatever pretty things you have been collecting: buttons, stones, shells, beads, beach glass etc...

13) Tea-lights 

Line them up along a wall, on the ground, as centre pieces—they're gorgeous anywhere!

Clockwise from Top Left: Champagne Wedding Lemonade Budget; LaVie Inspirations; The Junk Revival; LaVie Inspirations; Banana Frog
14) Lace Jars
Glue lace doilies around jars to add a touch of vintage class to your tea-lights, lanterns and vases.
Cathrin D'Entremont Weddings
15) Jars Wrapped in Handkerchiefs
Handkerchiefs are a beautiful touch for vintage/chic weddings.
Home Quotient
16) Place Card
Attach your guests' names on your jars and use them as place cards. This is the perfect opportunity to decorate your jars or fill them with sweets!
17) Invitations
Keep your theme running through every detail! Woohoo, glass jars!