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365 Objects Of Design

In Praise of the Glass Jar

2nd April 2014
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cookie jar lamp from Graham and Green

cookie jar lamp from Graham and Green

When it comes to versatility the humble glass jar might just be the winner. I, perhaps rather boringly, have them on my shelves for storing things. But it turns out that they’re so much more than that. Recently I have seen them in hotels where they are used as lighting, as cocktail shakers and in my local cafe they are simply handed out as glasses to drink from.

the mason jar cocktail shaker from rowen and wren

the mason jar cocktail shaker from rowen and wren

The most common is the Mason jar, mine are Quattro Stagioni, but let’s not forget the Kilner version too. All of which have been pressed into service by enterprising craftsmen and women to create something that is along way from storage.

six glass drinking jars

set of six glass jars by peach blossom

Etsy, the bastion of all things vintage and handmade is full of mason jar lights, including this very pretty sea green version.

sea glass mason jar pendant by bootsngus

sea glass mason jar pendant by bootsngus

While westelm, newly opened in London (but with lighting still to make the trek over from the US) has created its own version based on the jar.

glass jar pendant lights from westelm

glass jar pendant lights from westelm

There are even countless websites devoted to the repurposing of the classic mason jar of which this: 100 Clever Ways to Repurpose Mason Jars is just one. There is also a Pinterest Board called One Million, but at 247 pins so far, I feel that may have been a tad ambitious.

mason jar wall planter from notjustahousewife.net

mason jar wall planter from notjustahousewife.net

In addition to plant pots, they also make rather good lamp bases as you can fill them with different things and change the display. If you fancy having a go at making your own then here’s a tutorial and finally, this time a wall light.

mason jar wall light by pottery barn

mason jar wall light by pottery barn

So what are you waiting for. Glass light shades with vintage bulbs are deeply fashionable at the moment. Eat the jam, wash the jar, add some electricity to it. Send over your photographs to kate at madaboutthehouse dot com.

mason jar light from uniche interior furnishing

mason jar light £65 from uniche interior furnishing

And here are mason jars used as soap dispensers as mentioned in the comments below:

mason jar soap dispenser from fade interiors

mason jar soap dispenser from fade interiors

 

 

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  • Teddy 2nd June 2014 at 5:57 pm

    I saw a really lovely jar lamp from west elm and i would love to order it – here it is
    https://www.cb2.com/cloche-table-lamp/f7648

    I’m not sure whether you’d be able to advise me, but the lamp’s volt input has to be no more that 120V. But since i’m in the UK, it’s 230 volts. What do i do? I was thinking about purchasing a small transformer but they cost just as much, if not more than the lamp itself.

    Help?!? i really love this lamp 😀

    • Kate Watson-Smyth 4th June 2014 at 4:06 pm

      I know that the lighting is supposed to be coming to the UK Westelm soon. Hold on and I will find out exactly when for you … watch this space. Literally…
      And I have just spoken to them and been told that the lighting will be here in the autumn. There’s no fixed date yet but the company is hoping to have everything ready by late August/early September. I hope that helps.

    • Teddy 18th June 2014 at 9:34 pm

      Wow Great!! Glad to hear that, i’ll definitely be checking back for an update

      Thank you 🙂

  • 2moiselles 2nd April 2014 at 3:39 pm

    J’adore ces idées d’inspiration avec les bocaux en verre

  • Fionnuala 2nd April 2014 at 1:35 pm

    Hi Kate,

    We use or Balls jars as soap despensers! Have a peek at them on our website.

    • Kate Watson-Smyth 2nd April 2014 at 3:25 pm

      Hi Fionnuala, I have added them to the post, see above. They’re great.

      • Fionnuala 2nd April 2014 at 3:48 pm

        Hi Kate,

        Thanks for that.Yes they do look great!
        I have had a snoop at your kitchen and love the grey shelves and the artistic way in which you have filled them. (Spotted the Apperol!)

        All the best

        Fionnuala.

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