Hey there, Mason jar fans!
It's that time of the year again when the air turns crisp and the scent of candy is everywhere! My kiddos love to decorate for every. single. holiday. seriously. Halloween is no different at our house, and it's even better when we can add a few new homemade decorations to our lineup!
As a Mason jar fan, I've seen a number of fall and Halloween inspired crafts drift through my social media over the years that have been on my "to be made" list and this year I decided to give these 3 craft projects a try!
As with recipes that I love (and blog about), I pick craft projects based on simplicity of required supplies, easy instructions, and (hopefully) cute final product. I want it to be a good looking project but have it not take all day or necessitate running all over town for super specific stuff. I just don't have the time or bandwidth for that kinda nonsense - ya know?! I found everything on my craft shopping list from spray paint to liquid starch at my local Walmart - so I'm sure you can find it all too!
Adorable Cheesecloth Ghosts
My bestie sent me this video a few weeks ago and these little ghosts just looked too cute to pass up! This craft is really more Mason jar adjacent than a true Mason jar craft but I just had to try it. And once you try it (and see how easy it is), you'll want to keep making more!
Note: You don't have to use a Mason jar and canning ring to form your base but I found it very helpful to when forming my ghost "arms".
- Regular mouth half pint (8oz) Mason jar
- Regular mouth canning ring
- 1-2 pipe cleaners (depending on length)
- Small balloon
- Liquid Starch (I used Purex Sta-Flo Liquid Starch)
- Wide mouth half pint (8oz) jar or other shallow bowl
- Black fabric
- Tiny pumpkin or other decoration (optional but adorable!)
- Start by creating your ghost form with: the regular mouth half pint jar, pipe cleaners, canning ring, and balloon.
Around the threaded top of the Mason jar, bend your two pieces of pipe cleaner (the arms of your ghost) and secure them into place by screwing on the canning ring. Make sure your arms are long enough to touch in the middle if your ghost will be holding a pumpkin or other decoration.
Inflate the balloon to the right diameter in proportion to your ghosts body and wedge into the top the of Mason jar.
- Put your ghost form on a piece of cardboard or thick paper and unwind some of your cheesecloth. Laying the cheesecloth over your ghost, measure how long you want your pieces to be. You want to be sure you have some puddling around the bottom for your ghost to "stand" on. Cut two pieces of cheesecloth for your ghost.
- Pour liquid starch into your wide mouth half pint Mason jar or other shallow bowl. Take one piece of cheesecloth and fully submerge it. Squeeze out excess liquid starch. Pull cheesecloth apart and lay it over your ghost form. Repeat this step with your second piece of cheesecloth, laying it the opposite direction over your ghost form.
You don't want your ghost to look too perfect so make sure you put in some wrinkles, bunches, and other folds to give it more character.
- Allow your ghost to dry overnight.
- Once your ghost is dry, gently unstick the cheesecloth from your cardboard, remove your ghost form and your ghost should now be able to stand on its own!
- Decorate! I cut two eyes from black fabric and hot glued them on. Then I hot glued the miniature pumpkin between its two "hands" and ta-da - you're done! You can add an electric candle or fairy lights to your ghost if desired.
Tissue Paper / Napkin Lanterns
You may recall that last summer I did a craft series with my kiddos over the summer and they made Tissue Paper Lanterns. This craft is pretty much exactly like that one but EVEN EASIER because I just used one napkin instead of lots of little pieces of tissue paper.
- Any Mason jar you want to decorate. I like the "smooth side" jars for this but any size or kind will work.
- Mod Podge or other sealer - I like the "gloss" finish for this project.
- 1" paint brush
- Seasonal napkin or tissue paper
- Lantern hanger (optional) I used our Mason Jar Lifestyle Band with Chain
- If you're using a napkin, as I did, you'll want to separate the two layers so you only put the thin, printed layer on your Mason jar. I then cut my napkin in half. You want the napkin to be long enough to cover the entire jar and have some extra at the bottom to wrap it.
- On your Mason jar, spread a thin layer of Mod Podge over the entire jar with your 1" paint brush. I put the sealer up to the threaded neck, but not over, as I want to be able to use the threads for accessories.
- Once coated, begin to gently place your napkin over the sticky surface of your jar - starting near the threaded neck. Don't worry too much about wrinkles as they'll add character. If you get a hole, simply put an extra piece of your printed napkin over it to cover.
- When your Mason jar is covered all around the surface, trim off any extra. You'll secure this overlapping edge down with Mod Podge before the project is done but don't worry about it yet.
- Set your jar on its threaded neck so you can secure the napkin to the bottom. Put a thin layer of Mod Podge on the bottom and start wrapping the napkin around it kind of like its a present. Put layers of Mod Podge in between layers of paper to adhere them. Once the bottom is neatly covered with paper, be sure to put on one more layer of Mod Podge over the whole surface.
- Allow the entire jar to dry sitting "upside down" on its threaded neck.
- When the first layer is dry, now it's time to seal everything in with another coat of Mod Podge. Using your 1" brush, gently spread an even coat of sealer all over your jar. If you got the bottom sealed thoroughly already, then you don't need to do this part again - just the sides and be gentle around the overlapping seam on the side. Allow jar to dry again.
- Decorate! I like to put a handle on my lanterns and we have several options in our store but I like the galvanized band with chain for a little bit of a spooky touch! You can also put in an electric votive light or regular tea light into your jar to light up the night!
Canning Ring Pumpkin
I have seen this craft over and over and over again and with ALLLL the canning rings I've accumulated - it's been on my "to make" list forever! Plus it really didn't need any supplies that I didn't have on hand (minus the orange spray paint and I picked up new ribbon for fun!).
Note: I'm not a spray painting expert by any stretch and my painted rings did scuff on each other a bit. I used the same spray paint I'd seen another crafter use and perhaps I needed to use a sealer or other primer - I'm not sure. If you know, leave me a note in the comments as I'd love to do better next time! Though the scuffed look is kinda cute too and more rustic!
- 20 regular mouth canning rings. If you use wide mouth, then you may need a few more or less - I'm not sure.
- Orange spray paint - I used Rust-Oleum 2X Ultra Cover Gloss Real Orange Spray Paint and Primer In One
- Pipe cleaner or string in orange
- Twig (or cinnamon sticks)
- Grab your canning rings, spray paint, and a piece of cardboard and head outside. Spray paint all of your rings and allow them to dry. Once dry, flip them over and spray the other side.
- Once all your canning rings are dry, bring them inside and start assembling your pumpkin. Grab your pipe cleaner and start threading your painted rings on it (be sure they're all facing the same direction - it just looks neater that way).
- Once the rings are on your pipe cleaner you'll need to shuffle them around a bit and get them settled as you tighten the pipe cleaner. When you're happy with your pumpkins look, twist the pipe cleaner to secure the rings in place.
- Grab a twig or you can use cinnamon sticks if you'd rather for your stem. I just walked around the warehouse and found a cool stick and trimmed it to the size I wanted.
- Put the stick in the middle of your pumpkin and decorate with ribbon. I like to do this easy "double bow" I learned from good ol' Martha Stewart.
- If you want to kick it up a notch, you can add fairy lights to your pumpkin as well.
I hope you found these crafts fun, spookily simple to do, and as adorable as I did! It's a great way to get into the Halloween spirit as we get close to the 31st! If you try them out, then come by and share with us on social media! I’d love to see what you made and connect with you : ) Join the conversations going on right now on our Facebook business page, Mason Jar Lifestyle, or Facebook group, Living The Mason Jar Lifestyle! We are also on Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and TikTok. Looking forward to connecting with you soon!