Repurposing Jars

I have an affinity towards glass jars.  They are a favorite of mine.  They embody so many things I appreciate:  they can be repurposed, they are versatile, they are practical, they are vintage, classic, and they are free (or paid for when purchasing pasta sauce and jam).

As I looked around the other day, I realized that I use jars in so many ways all over my house:
It all started with votive candles.  Jam jars became pretty, vintage, free candle holders on the dining room table and on the front porch.

Since I like to recycle, and our city’s curbside recycling doesn’t pick up glass, I began to collect glass jars under the kitchen sink to re-use or take to the recycle drop off center.  I dig into the pile when I need a jar to use for something and take the rest to the drop off periodically.  (Which, by the way, my kids love.  There is something about it- throwing glass into large metal dumpsters-the loud crashing glass, and the renegade feeling, while actually being environmentally responsible, that makes it a big event at our house).  So I recycle some and save some for repurposing.

I must say that some jars are prettier than others, and some are more useful in size than others.  Sometimes, Dave asks me if I really need all these jars, that are pouring out of my our cabinet.  I try to explain that I really do try to sort and recycle every couple of months, but some I must keep.  I sometimes feel the urge to defend each jar’s potential future use to him.  After all, there are times that I even choose to buy a certain jar of jam because the jar is so pretty and I think it would be great to repurpose!

Jars can be used for so many different things.  You never know when you might need one! Some of my favorite uses are:
to hold flowers- fresh


and dried
and office supplies: clips and erasers in the drawer,
pens, Sharpies & pencils
 water for painting


and homemade salad dressings
and thankful trees
and even pink lemonade!

A couple of my students have been bringing their iced tea and chai to class in a glass jar with the lid securely screwed on for safe travel.  How fun is that?- the retro travel mug!

So, before you ditch that jelly jar, pasta jar, pimento jar (one of my favorites)- think again- it might have a great purpose.

9 thoughts on “Repurposing Jars

  1. Leigh says:

    One more thing we have in common, Julie. I'm a total jar-repurposer! Just yesterday I had ice cream in one of my Ball jars because it seemed fancier than my floral bowl.


  2. Elaine Williams says:

    A friend suggested baking rosemary bread in jelly jars (the small ones) so that each person got a personal loaf in its own jar! You can tie a tag around each to serve as nametags. (I actually BOUGHT a dozen 4-oz. jars. for this purpose!) Sorry, I couldn't wait til I had 12 to re-purpose!! 🙂


  3. Betsy says:

    I use jars to hold and display my Scrapbooking flowers, buttons, ribbon and other goodies. I can't throw a jar away knowing what possibilities they have for a new life! I had not thought to use them for a vase. Totally used a pickle jar to take flowers to a friend today. Thank you so much for the idea!

    And let me just say how much I LOVE your blog! I've been reading since Jessica Turner posted the link on her blog a few months ago. I've only made your brownies and baked potato soup, but there are so many more I want to try. Those two got rave reviews. I've made the brownies 5 times!
    Thank you for sharing your wonderful ideas and recipes! 🙂


  4. Julie Hunt says:

    Betsy, I am so glad you found cup-a cup-a and that your brownies have been a hit and that you got to take a jar of flowers to a friend! Thanks for reading. Let me know what other recipes you enjoy.


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