DIY: Colored Glass Mason Jars



I have a love for antique blue mason jars. But if they are in good repair-the are so spendy! Why not make them myself!

After doing a little research, I saw that many creative people had made really beautiful colored jars in a variety of ways. Many people painted the inside of their jars which they said made for a more even finish. I wanted to be able to display the flowers my children brought in from the yard so I painted the outside. Most recipes called for Mod Podge, food coloring and a splash of water. Actually, my first batch completely omitted the water. I would like to say this was on purpose, but really it was more to do with the fact it was a really long day! So here is what I did:

Mix the Mod Podge with food coloring. I used about a 1/4 cup of Mod Podge (glossy) and it covered 4 small jars with a good amount left over. I did use a good amount of food coloring; you can see how dark the solution was in the picture below. If you would like a more transparent finish, then add about a tablespoon of water. Turn your jar upside down and brush the Mod Podge on the jar. I used a foam brush but still had streaks. Maybe a more watery solution would keep this from happening.



Bake at 175 degrees until all the Mod Podge has turned from opaque to transparent. Let cool and then spray with a clear sealant if you plan to use water in the jars. Now I’m on a hunt to find tiny jars to paint the colors of the rainbow! How fun would those be with the afternoon sun shining through? These would make beautiful centerpieces on the dining table. You could even use the colors of the season! I’m thinking rich autumn colors: hazelnut brown and burnt orange… I wonder if Wilton’s makes food coloring in those colors!



Has anyone else tried this project? I had a problem with the Mod Podge caking around the rim of the jar. Any suggestions on how to prevent this? What other tips do you have?


  1. Barbara says

    what a great idea for adorable wedding decorations! paint them in your wedding colors and put a tea light in them…that would be beautiful!

    • Natalie says

      It was fun too. It might even make a good kid project… if your kids were old enough to work with glass, I suppose! :)

  2. says

    Oh my gosh I just saw something like this last week on another website and loved them. I’m so glad you shared how to create these! Thank you can’t wait to try it out!

    • Natalie says

      I used gel food coloring… Wilton’s I think. I wanted as deep of colors as possible, plus I love their selection. :)

  3. Ashleigh says

    Does the clear sealant make them waterproof? I’ve found ways to make the color permanent with stain but it turns out rather streaky. If the clear sealant prevents water damage maybe the insides could be done and sealed and it would prevent clotting at the rim as well???

    I would love to make these for my wedding but I want to make sure that they are waterproof first!

    • Natalie says

      The clear sealant I used made them able to hold up to water being splashed on them when you fill them up to use as vases. I really don’t think what I used would stand up to having water constantly against the surface-like if you used it on the inside. There are a number of people who have used this idea for their centerpieces-have you taken a peek at projects like these on Pintrest?

  4. Amanda says

    I’ve been looking at tutorials to do this and yours seem like the easiest and the ones that turn out the best! Thank you so much for posting this, I am using Mason jars as my centerpieces for my wedding and want to dye them orange and purple to match my colors. I know that there are many different varieties of Modge Podge, like glossy or matte, etc. Which type did you use? Thanks in advance!

    • Natalie says

      Thanks! I think I used a bit less water than what most tutorials called for. That is why they are so vivid! I love the idea of using them for centerpieces at your wedding. Orange and purple sound beautiful! I used the glossy version of Mod Podge, and then I also sprayed them with a bit of clear sealant-also in glossy. Good luck on the project! I am sure they will be fabulous for your big day!

  5. Jen L says

    Where was this blog 6 months ago?!? I was clueless on how to turn my regular jars into BLUE jars so I purchased glass paint. It turned out beautiful, it streaks though (which made a really neat effect) and took multiple layers.. I may try this version out for fun! Thanks!

  6. Les P says

    I love this! I just wish I would have seen these sooner. When my cousin got married last May, these would have def been used in her rustic themed reception!

    • Natalie says

      I haven’t really hand washed mine. I’ve wiped up droplets of water and they seem to be just fine for that. I think it would depend on how “heavy duty” the sealant you used was. Theoretically, if it’s waterproof, I think they would be hand-washable.

  7. Lori says

    can these jars be used as drinking glasses also? I’m thinking of favors for my daughters wedding. color jar to bottom of rim threads. then add ice tea spoon, drink mix, straw and a cute saying.any suggestions on saying? I’m also thinking maybe make a large amount of paint mix in a bucket and hold from top and dip into paint maybe no streaks this way? are sealants able to be used for finish if using as a drink glass? thanks in advance.

    • Natalie says

      I’m sorry for the delay! I just now saw your comment. I personally would not use them as drinking glasses. The sealant that I used is not food safe, and I’m not sure if one exists that would stand up to liquid being sloshed on it. I have also not tried the dipping and therefore have no idea if that would produce less streaks. It’s a great idea though! Good luck!

  8. Jamie says

    Finding this just made my day!! I will be making some purple and red jars in my near future!!!

  9. Maddie says

    Roughly how long should I bake the jars? Does their size matter on how long you bake them or at what temperture?

    • Natalie says

      If I remember correctly, I baked mine at my ovens lowest setting, 175 degrees I think. And it was for about 25 minutes and then I let them cool as the oven got cold. Hope this helps!

  10. Julie B says

    I’m trying to make these foe my wedding! I’m using Vitrea 160 glass paint, then baking it to make them waterproof. I’m having issues with the paintbrush making them streaky. So I’m going to use some paint thinner to try an smooth out the streaks. I’ve also heard that using a Mr Clean Magic Eraser to paint with works too. So, I’m going to try this next to see if I can get the results I’m looking for.

  11. Cristy says

    What type of sealant did you use? Was it specifically for glass! I have some rather tall vases I’d like to do but i think my oven is too small for them to stand up. :(

  12. Michele says

    I just tried this & they turned out pretty well! I’ve been making mason jar wine glasses so this is perfect to add a little something extra! To make them drink friendly I did not paint the rim or the inside. I did have a little problem with bubbles & streaking but nothing bad. I made blue & purple both with liquid food coloring & sealed them w a high gloss sealant to make them “heavy water resistant” so hand wash but no soaking or dishwasher! Thanks so much for the beautiful idea!!

  13. Rachel says

    Hi. I just got finished doing my mason jars, they are outside in the sun drying, I did the inside with out spraying with a clear coat because I only plan to put battery powered tea lights in the w/ lid and hang outside around our garden. What I did to prevent build up around the ring when having upside down to drain the extra, I used a diaper box turned up side down w/ holes for the jars. Just be sure to have news paper down underneath to catch the extra. This is such a fun idea ! Wish I had more that two food colors on hand, I just used the other colors up making pasta beads for my 3 and 2 year old to make necklaces :)

  14. Lotus says

    Hello there!
    On the DIY painted mason jars.. what kind of sealant did you use.?? Please let me know..

  15. mary cole says

    it works better if you put the color inside the jar then put them in the oven on warm till the clump and streaks dry

  16. Maddy says

    I tried this and had the same problem! Also, I couldn’t get a very deep color.. I’m going to try again soon!

  17. Patti says

    I would like to use mason jars for pendant lights over my kitchen island and would like to color them amber.
    My question is how will the heat from the light affect the paint inside the jar?

    • Natalie says

      What a cool idea! I would have absolutely no idea about that though. Most of the new lower wattage bulb don’t get hot like the older kind do, right? Might not be a problem?

  18. Angela says

    I know this post is quite a bit of time away since you posted this; however you can find the orange and other colors your are looking for in the gel form of Wilton colors. I’m sure you’ve probably found them by now; but if you haven’t I know even Wal-Mart carries the burnt orange. Can’t wait to try this with my kids! Have don’ts of baby food jars we are going to turn into tea lights :) Fun Fun!!

  19. Phoebe says

    If you pour some of the modpodge mix into the inside of the jars then roll it around before dumping the extra out you’ll have an even, streak free coat without using a brush. Although this method would not be waterproof or foodsafe without some form of sealing!

  20. karie says

    I used your same recipe but poured the mixture inside the jar, swirled to coat entire jar and let drain over paper plate. After it drained I just wiped the excess from the rim and let air dry. I don’t use mine for a base. I put lights or candles in them.. really pretty. I bet you could do the same thing with a coat of clear spray paint on the inside but I haven’t tried it…

  21. crazybigchick says

    I have done this, but on the inside of the mason jar. Such a great project. I also used old glass gerber baby food jars, and painted the outside. The 2oz baby food jars are the perfect size for those tea light candles. (With four children, I have literally hundreds and hundreds of those tiny jars over the years. I knew it would one day pay off!) For Valentine’s this year I am painting several of the 4 oz baby food jars and turning them into citronella candles to hang all around the back porch along with the mason jars that I use as hanging flower pots. (They still work for holding water and flowers with the paint on the inside.)

  22. Shelley says

    I just made a batch of purple ones today using the mod podge, water, and food coloring in the inside. They are beautiful! I mixed the mod podge with the violet food coloring and no matter how much food coloring i put in ( i ended up using it all) the mix was a blue color. I figured it was pretty anyways so i baked them. To my utter surprise after 10 mins when i opened the oven i was pleased to see they turned into a deep, dark purple! Exactly what I wanted! I was so happy! Im going to use these at my wedding reception. Wish i could post pictures with this!

  23. Carly says

    Just tried this and they came out beautifully. Got everything I needed at walmart. I hand-braided some thin beading wire and ran it around the rim of each jar, then used it to make a handle over the jar so I can suspend them from twine on my porch for a party tonight. I dropped an electric tea light in each one and they look wonderful! My next idea for this: Use big jars for flowers and small baby food jars for matching lights.

  24. Sindy Murray says

    you did a really good job, I don’t know if I could have done better! I seen them before on the web but yesterday I was at Walmart in the craft department and they had them!

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  26. katie says

    Having some trouble with the mod podge caking in the crevasses and around the rim. Anyone know how to prevent this?

    Down to my last jar and i absolutely have to get this one perfect as its a valentines gift.

  27. Misty says

    You actually don’t have to heat it. When you put it in the oven, the temperature makes the modpodge melt. That’s why it drips and cakes. Mod Podge will dry clear, so just let it sit until it’s dry. I made some last night and they came out great. I haven’t tried the sealant yet.

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  30. ellen beck says

    I have a Mason jar addiction- I have tons of them and love the antique ones. This is a clever idea to make some of the modern boring ones a bit more interesting.

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  33. alicia szemon says

    I would love to do something like this for my wedding. It goes with the whole country, Rustic look!


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