How to Paint Mason Jars

Do you have a lot of mason jars laying around that you hate to get rid of cuz ya just don’t know when they will come in handy? I say lets paint them!

There are a lot of different things you can do with mason jars but I love painting them and using them for centerpieces or to place on a pallet board to hold some nice flowers. You can even use painted mason jars to hold utensils at a picnic or event.

It is so easy to do you’ll wonder why you haven’t done it before!

How to paint mason jars

This is a super simple painting craft that all ages can enjoy. Lets just gather up some materials to get started.

  • mason jars
  • rubbing alcohol
  • cotton balls or paper towels
  • chalk paint
  • paint brush
  • paper plate
  • sand paper or wet cloth

How to paint a mason jar

First you need to clean your mason jars. You can use any jars you would like for this, they don’t have to be mason jars. An old pickle jar would work or maybe you have baby food jars, those would make cute centerpieces to hold some votive candles.

You want to make sure the insides are clean from any food or anything else that was stored in your jars. Wash with hot soapy water. Dry completely.

Next you want to clean the outside of the jars with rubbing alcohol. Dip the cotton ball into the rubbing alcohol, you don’t need to soak it. And wipe the whole outside of the jar with the rubbing alcohol. I set mine on a paper plate to do this. This step ensures all the oils from fingerprints or labels are all cleaned from the mason jar. It doesn’t take very long to dry. The side you started with is probably dry before you finish the whole jar.

Now we choose our paint. While this can be done with acrylic or even spray paint, I prefer chalk paint. I love the look it gives my mason jars and it is so easy to distress. The problem with acrylic paint is you will see your brush marks and it tends to peel off when you go to distress it. The chalk paint however goes on so smoothly and distresses super easy with a bit of sandpaper or even just a damp cloth if you don’t want the dust from sanding.

My favorite chalk type paint is Wise Owl. They have so many great colors and the coverage is amazing! (I’ll talk more about Wise Owl in another post, keep watch!) But for now this is where I buy all my paint from. I also sell my creations there, so it’s quite convenient.

You want to use either a foam brush or a soft bristle brush to paint the mason jars. The harder the bristles the more likely you will have brush strokes in your paint. But if you’re using the Wise Owl brand paint, its self leveling so the chances of getting brush marks is slim. Yet another reason to love Wise Owl!

Once you have the first coat of paint on, let it dry completely. Depending on the color you chose, you may only need one coat. Lighter colors always need more coats of paint. But two coats should work beautifully.

Next is distressing if you want that vintage look.  Make sure the paint is completely dry before you distress. You will need a piece of sand paper or a wet cloth if you don’t want the dust from sanding. There really isn’t a lot of dust but if you prefer no dust, I suggest wet distressing.

Lightly sand (or use a wet cloth) over the areas you want to distress. Usually the raised surfaces on the mason jar, such as the words or pattern. Sand as much or as little as you would like. If you take too much off, just paint over it again. It’s impossible to mess it up. Chalk paint is so forgiving. I can’t say the same for acrylic or spray paint.

If you are using chalk paint of any kind, you will need to seal it. You can use a few different things to seal the paint. Furniture wax, spray sealant or my personal favorite is again from Wise Owl and it’s their matte varnish. It gives you the perfect durable matte finish. Satin finish is also available if you want a bit of shine. If you’re painting your mason jars white, I recommend the Wise Owl Matte Varnish because it’s non yellowing. Meaning after time your white paint will still be white and not tarnished yellow.

One coat of varnish or sealer is all you need. And your mason jars are done! How fun and easy was that?! You can wrap some burlap around them for a nice centerpiece or make bless you jars like I did. They were a big hit at a craft event I participated in. bless you mason jar
fall mason jars

Checkout the  video tutorial below. And if you’re interested in the Wise Owl paint be sure to click here to make a purchase. (not an affiliate link, I just like to support my fellow painters and friends)

 

 

What will you do with your mason jar creations? Comment below! And don’t forget to subscribe to stay up to date on all things crafty!

 

Let's paint mason jars

Let’s learn about paper cutting

Paper Cutting: What is it?

I’ve always been fascinated by intricate pieces of art. No matter what form it’s in, art is amazing. There is no right or wrong way with art. You can make it your own, no matter the medium that you are choosing. Paper cutting is no different. It can be as simple or as intricate as you want it to be. It can be one color or multiple. The choice is yours. And that may just be what draws me to it the most.

Paper cutting can be dated back as far as the 4th century. As soon as the Chinese invented paper, there was paper cutting. The earliest uses for paper cutting include religious decorations or stencils used for patterns in embroidery.

It was popular among society women, but its popularity quickly spread to all classes. Paper cutting practices range from skilled craftsman (which one day I hope to accomplish) and to its revolution into the folk art world.

You can display paper cut designs in windows as paper lanterns or even in a simple frame. There are many cultures that use paper cutting in many different ways. Some use it as part of celebrations, such as banners. Most popular are the Papil Picado banners in Mexico. Haven’t we all had a banner at a birthday party, or baby shower or some form of a party?

Paper cutting silhouettes became very popular in England during the Middle Ages. It became its own art form. I don’t think I’ve been to a museum where I didn’t see at least one Victorian silhouette, have you? I remember making them in grade school for a Mother’s Day project.

So no matter if it’s a simple design like a silhouette or a birthday banner, or an intricate design like a stencil or a lantern, paper cutting is ever evolving. You just need some basic tools and a little bit of skill. Mostly to keep your hand steady!

*****this post contains affiliate links. This means at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commision if you click through and make a purchase****

How do I begin?

Let’s gather a few simple materials to begin. I found all the materials lying around my house. Even if you’re not a crafty person I bet you could still find them in your home.

  • Cutting board – I use self-healing mats but a hard smooth surface cutting board would work. Or even just a piece of cardboard. You want to protect the surface that your cutting on.
  • Scalpel with extra blades – xacto knives work well
  • Cardstock or paper works well. The thinner the paper the easier it is to cut. But keep in mind, the thinner the paper, the more delicate your results.
  • Glue Stick or removable adhesive
  • Masking tape
  • Design image – easily found w a Google image search
  • Plain white paper or contrasting color to your cardstock/paper
  • Ruler

paper cutting materials

Once you find an image print it out. Or you could draw it, if you have that talent. I find printing an image is easier so I don’t have to erase any lines when I’m finished. Line art from the 1900’s works well and should be out of copyright depending on your countries laws.

Let’s begin by using either a glue stick or removable adhesive to stick out image onto our card. You want to make sure its a removable adhesive because you want to take your printed design off once you’re done cutting. You could also use painters tape and tape just the corners if your design allows. And if you’re drawing your design you would obviously skip this step.

Decide which parts you want to cut out. Think positive or negative views. Keep in mind that any bits without a few supports will bend and break easily. Try to find designs that are all connected.

You can start cutting anywhere you choose. There is no right place or wrong place to begin. Sometimes it is easier to move the paper rather than the blade. Especially for those sharp turns, it makes it a smoother cut. After each cut, remove the cut paper. You don’t want it to slide under your design and cause problems with any other cuts.

If you slip and make a wrong cut, it’s an easy fix with some double-sided tape or even some glue. Once your design is all cut, remove your printed design, and you want to put it onto a contrasting piece of card or paper. If you cut it out of black for the silhouette effect, put it on a white sheet of paper to really make it pop out. Or if it’s a night scene with a moon perhaps put it against a blue or even yellow back ground. You could have a lot of fun and put it against a watercolor background of multiple colors. There really is no wrong way to put art together. You have your fundamentals and your talent and when you put them together, there’s no telling what you’ll create.

***full disclosure….I did not do well with this paper cutting attempt lol. It was a lot harder than I thought it was going to be. I didn’t even get any pictures of my results because it was just shredded lol Next time I will choose a let intricate design.

I hope you had as much fun with this as I did. I’m off to find some more pretty pictures I can attempt to cut. As always, I love to see your creations. Find me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Share your wins and fails with me. Please tell me I’m not the only one whose hands aren’t steady enough for this???

*****this post contains affiliate links. This means at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commision if you click through and make a purchase****

All about paper beads

Paper Beads

Since it’s summer and kids are out of school, I decided to do a simple paper craft that may just help you recycle and keep your kids entertained for just a few moments. Paper beads are simple, fun and quick to make. I know all you super busy moms out there can appreciate a good craft that will also help you recycle some old magazines or newspapers (or even some of their school work they cleaned out of their desks and jammed into their backpacks.)

Paper beads can be simple and beautiful at the same time. And a perfect cure for kids summer time boredom. If you have a bunch of junk mail, newspapers, or magazines lying around, round them up for this fun, quick craft.

History of Paper Beads

Paper bead making has a long history. It can be dated back to England as far as the Victorian Age. Young ladies would have social gatherings in their dinning rooms and make paper beads from scraps of wall paper. They would roll them on their knitting needles and use beeswax to polish them. Then they would string them up on yarn to make door curtains to divide rooms.

Paper bead making became popular again in the 1920’s and 30’s for jewelry making. Paper beads made in cooperative as parts of development projects in Uganda. (How cool is that) So that the country could move away from charitable donations and aid towards business enterprises. This way they can provide sustainable income and development opportunities. They use scraps of paper from printing companies and recycled materials.

There’s a Scottish based company called Mzuribeads that markets and sells ethical Ugandan paper beads. You can also find them from artists on Etsy and Artfire. But I say we make our own!

Tools and Materials

There are many different types of paper you can use for your beads. Go around the house and pick up all the old newspapers and magazines and junk mail that seems to accumulate and never disappear. You can also used color printer paper, cardstock, wallpaper, paper shopping bags, or even wrapping paper. Everything is fair game :))

So you have your paper all ready, next you need some glue. I used plain old Elmer’s glue cuz it dries clear.

You’ll need a pencil to mark your paper for cutting the shapes. (You can use a crayon if it’s readily available depending on the kids ages)

A ruler for measuring your cuts. I’ll be honest here, I didn’t use a ruler. I just cut long triangles. But if you want all your beads the same shape you should measure.

Scissors for cutting the shapes. I used my paper-cutter from Cricut. But you can use scissors or a craft knife or even a rotary cutter. (If kids are doing the cutting, I suggest safety scissors)

A wooden skewer for rolling the beads around. I’ll be honest again, I used  a crochet hook. It’s what I had laying on my desk within reach lol You can also use a pencil or pen. Kids may find it easier to use a plastic straw. Really anything you can wrap the paper around will work. The bigger the object, the bigger the hole in the bead will be so keep that in mind.

Optional- you can use a small paint brush to apply the glue rather than trying to squeeze it from the container. It may be a bit cleaner since you don’t really need a lot to hold the beads together.

Now to make your beads are shiny and waterproof you will need a sealer of some sort. I’m using Mod Podge. Varnish can also be used, and probably should be for durability. When I do the video tutorial I will try to remember to use both for comparison sake.

Making the beads, finally!

Now that you have all your materials lets start cutting some paper. We are going to be sticking with the triangle shape. And as I said earlier, you can measure or just wing it like I did.

Paper beads made from magazine pages

If you want to measure you can pick your own measurements depending on how wide you want your beads. The biggest end of your triangle determines the width of your bead. Cut the paper length wise to get the longest triangles. The longer the paper, the thicker your bead will be.

Cut all the triangles out before you start the rolling and gluing. Trust me, it gets messy once the glue gets involved, or maybe that’s just me?

Once you have your shapes cut, begin rolling with the wide end on your wooden skewer or crochet hook or straw, whatever you chose. Roll about half way and add a tiny dab of glue. Keep the roll tight so there aren’t any gaps in your bead. Once you get to the skinny end of the triangle you want to add glue about a quarter of an inch all the way to the end to hold the bead shape.

See how easy that was? Maybe a little messy with the glue but mess equals fun right? (Sorry Moms)

Making paper beads

It’s fun to see the outcome of the beads made with magazines or printed paper. Magazines have so many vibrant colors and would make very fun beads.

There are different shapes you can cut to get different beads. A pendant shape and variations of the triangle. I’ll go over all of them in the video tutorial. So make sure ya stay tuned!

How did you do? Let’s see all your beads! You can email me or find me on social media to show me your paper beads.

 

Coffee and Crafts: Paper Quilling

Coffee and Crafts: Paper Quilling

Welcome to the first ever Coffee and Crafts with Pallets, Paper and Paint. During the first Coffee and Crafts: Paper quilling,  we will be learning a few basic steps and making a couple tiny projects.

I’ve chosen paper quilling for the first Coffee and Crafts because it can be so simple and easy to learn. We will start with a couple small projects and maybe one day we will move on to a big project. But for now lets begin with the basics. Which is pretty much all I know lol I find paper quilling very relaxing and super easy with just a few simple tools.

*** Disclosure***Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional costs to you, I will earn a commission if you click-through and make a purchase.

Let’s learn Paper Quilling

I talked a bit about paper quilling in my post titled “9 paper crafting ideas”.
I have made a couple of cards using the paper quilling technique and I made a decorative heart in a frame. But that’s really all that I have done with it. I have a giant old frame that I would love to put a decorative paper quilling design in. So I better learn how to do it! Let’s learn paper quilling together.

What is paper quilling?

Paper Quilling is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped and glued together to create decorative designs.

You can use any type of paper but thin paper works best in my opinion. I’ve used cardstock as well and loved the results. The cardstock that I use in most of my paper creations is the Core’dinations value pack. I’ve also had great results with Recollections brand cardstock. 65# weight is all you need. If you go heavier, it doesn’t seem to roll or look as nice. You will see the creases when you roll the paper.

If you don’t want to cut your own paper strips you can buy them already cut. I purchased a quilling kit when I wanted to start learning. There are also great books with designs all mapped out for you. Such as this one. There are so many pretty colors and designs to choose from. I did a heart design from a template I purchased and it sold before the event I took it to even started! So that was a nice surprise!

You only need a few tools for this craft (and don’t forget your most important tool….coffee!)

You will need:
  • Slotted tool
  • Ruler
  • Glue
  • Tweezers
  • Scissors
  • quilling paper
  • a small piece of paper to glue your design to

The designs we are going to do today are very easy. We are going to make a tight coil, a loose coil, teardrop, marquise and a swirl. Most of the shapes are made with the same technique. See, super simple. So let’s take a big sip of coffee and get started!

Getting Started

The first design we are going to make is an ice cream cone. Just in time for the sunny summer days! For this design we need to make 2 loose coils and one tight coil. And then pinch them into shape. Let’s begin with the smallest one first, the tight coil. This will be the cherry on top of our ice cream cone. This piece of paper is 1.5 inches long. So tiny and probably the hardest one just because it’s so little.

Paper Quilling

With the slotted tool, slip one end of the paper into the slot. Then twirl the paper (in either direction, doesn’t matter) holding the paper tight on the tool so it doesn’t unravel. *to avoid pulling the center out of the roll, push the roll off the tool.

Once off the tool, you want to place a small dot of glue on the end to hold it all together. You have just made your first shape! See how easy! Let’s make the scoop of ice cream next!

For the scoop of ice cream you will need a piece of paper 8 inches long. You’re going to do the same thing you did for the tight coil of the cherry. But this time don’t glue it just yet. Take it off the slotted tool and let it unravel itself just a bit. There is a ruler with holes in it if you want to measure just how big you want your scoop of ice cream. But being that this is such a tiny little design, it won’t unravel too much so I didn’t use it for this project.

Once it has unraveled a bit, glue the end to hold it together. Pinch a point to form a teardrop shape. And than pinch another point to form a half circle. Curl the points with your fingers or around the tip of the tool, which ever is easiest for you. And now you have made your ice cream scoop! Isn’t this fun! Imagine all the colors you could make for the ice cream!

One final shape before we glue it all down, the ice cream cone. No ice cream is complete without a cone.

For the cone you will need an 8 inch piece of paper and do the same thing you did for the scoop. Make a loose coil and pinch it into a tear drop. Then hold the teardrop shape and press in with the other finger to make two more points, forming a triangle. And that’s how you make the cone.

Now we get to put it all together! Here’s where the tweezers could come in handy. I find it easier just to use my fingers and usually end up with glue on my fingers and coffee cup and everything else. But messy is more fun right? 🙂

I just dab some glue onto a piece of scrap paper. You don’t need a lot with this tiny project. You want to lightly dip each piece of the design in the glue and place it on a 2 inch square piece of paper.

I started with the cone, then the scoop and finally the cherry. And there you have your first piece of paper quilled art! Wasn’t that fun!

In the video below I will show you how to make a tulip as well. The instructions are just as simple as the ice cream cone. So grab a second cup of coffee and enjoy watching my very first video tutorial!

 

If you have any suggestions on what you would like me to attempt next, leave a comment below or email me with coffee and crafts as the subject.

 

*** Disclosure***Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional costs to you, I will earn a commission if you click-through and make a purchase.

 

9 Paper Crafting Ideas

 Paper Crafting

Wikipedia defines paper crafting as: Paper craft is the collection of art forms employing paper or card as the primary artistic medium for the creation of three-dimensional objects. It is the most widely used material in arts and crafts.

There are many different things you can do with paper. But here are some of the things I have tried so far and a couple that are on my to do list. (watch for Coffee & Crafts once a month I try a new craft)

Paper crafting is a newish craft for me. I’ve only been doing it a few years. I started out with making cards. I quickly became obsessed with collecting all the stamps I could get my hands on and ohhh the paper!! The pretty, pretty paper! I may have a slight hoarding problem when it comes to pretty paper. I buy it and hate to cut into it so it just stacks up higher and higher. The more I use, the more I can buy, so I am slowly but surely using up my stash.

9 Paper Crafting Ideas

Scrapbooking – This is  a method of presenting personal and family history in the form of a box, card or book. It is a ton of fun and can be done for any occasion. Birthdays, family vacations, weddings, graduations, the list is endless. I love the idea of scrapbooking and will admit to starting at least two different scrapbooks for my son. I unfortunately have yet to finish them. But are scrapbooks ever really finished? You’re always making memories so there is always more to add! I will finish my sons baby scrapbook eventually, maybe by the time he has his own kids. (which is not anytime soon I hope!)

Card-making – Card making is the craft of hand-making greeting cards. Now this is my absolute favorite and I could prob talk about it for hours if someone would let me. Just a few years ago I had no idea this was even a thing that people did. I thought card making was for kids. Honestly. I had no idea it was a huge industry of creative people.

Now I make cards for my vendor booth inside a local shop. When I was asked to bring my cards into the shop I will admit that I didn’t think they would sell very well. Who wants to buy my handmade cards when they can go to any drug store and buy cheap ones for $1? But was I pleasantly surprised when my cards started selling pretty regularly. People love well made items and as long as you take pride in your work and produce a great product, people will buy it.

Paper flowers –Paper flowers are right next to handmade cards on my absolute favorites list. I can’t possible pick between the two. You have seen my paper flower tutorial and my template to my  paper flower in my shop. (more coming soon!)

They can be made from plain paper, printed paper, cardstock, vellum, crepe paper and even tissue paper. There are so many different types of flowers you  can make from a variety of different papers. And I promise you that I will show you how!

Decoupage- I have limited experience with decoupage. I have done maybe a handful of decoupage projects. And probably have another handful on my to-do list.

Decoupage is the art or craft of decorating objects with paper cut outs. Now this could be a photograph, or die cuts, or even paper napkins and wrapping paper. I have lined dresser drawers with pretty wrapping paper successfully with the decoupage method. There are different mediums you can use for decoupage as well. There is mod podge- a glue that dries clear. You can use varnish as well. I’ll show you what I used in another post (Coffee and Crafts, coming soon)

Paper mache – As with decoupage, I have very limited experience with paper mache. I don’t think I have done it since grade school to be honest. Paper mache is a composite material consisting of paper pieces bound with an adhesion such as glue, starch or wallpaper paste. It’s messy and fun!

You can make masks, or pinata’s would be fun to make! Any shape you can imagine can be done with paper mache. My boyfriend makes scary pumpkins for Halloween using paper mache. Maybe I’ll put this on the Coffee and Crafts list as well and have him do the tutorial. Let’s see if I can convince him!

Origami – The Japanese art of folding paper into decorative shapes and figures. The goal is to transform a flat square sheet of paper into a finished shape or sculpture by different folding techniques.

I have zero experience with this to share, to be honest.  It looks fun and a bit intimidating to me. Any paper that can hold a crease can be used for origami. But thin paper is best. Washi is the traditional origami paper used in Japan. It is generally tougher than ordinary paper made from wood pulp.

Paper cutting – Is the art of paper designs with sharp scissors or a knife. It can be simple or intricate, whichever design you choose.

I find this very fascinating and have spent a bit too much time watching videos of artist paper cutting. It takes skill and patience and precision. None of which I have. LOL I have no tried this technique as I’m afraid of cutting my fingers off with very sharp knives. (funny coming from someone who cuts wood, I know.)

Quilling- Paper quilling is on my favorites list as well. I have done a few small greeting cards and make one decent sized heart with this method. And I hope to do a lot more of it!

Paper quilling is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper rolled, shaped and glued together to create decorative designs. It’s amazing what you can do with paper quilling. This will def be on the Coffee and Crafts list!

Paper making – And last but not least is paper making. A fun and messy way to create your very own one of a kind paper.

Simply put paper making is the making of paper. I save all my little scraps of paper left over from various projects with the hopes of making my very own paper one day this summer. Paper can be made from various other fibers like cotton, but wood based paper is most common. I haven’t found a technique that I’ll be using yet, but as soon as I do, you all will be the first to know!

Isn’t it amazing how versatile paper is? All the things you can create with paper simply amaze me. Paper crafting is so much fun to learn. I hope you will learn some of these things with me!  I’m not hard to please, give me some pretty paper and pair of scissors and I’ll entertain myself for hours! Stay tuned if you want to see all the things I come up with!