I saw a meme circulating through Facebook at the beginning of the year about writing positive things down on a piece of paper and putting it in a jar. Then at the end of the year, you read everything and it shows you just how great the year really was. I thought it was a cute idea, but I already have a glass half full type of attitude so I shared it and went on about my way.
A few weeks later I’m approached by a friend who saw this same meme and decided to put a spin on it. She’s making a basket for someone and in it she wanted to put a mason jar filled with nice things about her friend from all of her friend’s friends. Get it? Anyway, she asked me to decorate her jar (pictures at the end of the post). I was pretty darn pleased with it and my friend was in love. Her plan is to get pieces of scrapbook paper and write on the blank side. After it’s folded, the pretty side will make the jar super colorful (but, knowing her she will settle on all black). I had so much fun making this that I decided to do one for myself. Watch the VIDEO on how I did it on my YOUTUBE channel, then come on back here. Go on now.
So now I have my decorated mason jar. I shopped around for my focal piece (bronze heart pendant) first and decorated around it. Creative process tip! I had everything I needed at home with the exception of a few beads and some bronze jump rings, head pins and cord crimps.
Now for the paper. I used 12″ x 12″ scrapbooking paper. I pulled the colors from the pendant in the form of cream, emerald, turquoise and sea foam. Each color corresponds to a season and each month in a season gets its own pattern. Tip: fabric dye works well with paper.
Depending on what you plan on doing with your mason jar (I’ll touch more on that later), you can fold your paper several ways to get different sized pieces. The way you fold it will also determine how many sheets of paper you’ll need. I’m folding mine into 16 3″ squares so I’ll only need two sheets of paper per month for a total of 24 sheets of paper. To store the paper squares I used a paper clip to hold them together, then set them in an envelope for easy access. I purchased most of my paper so I’ll cut up everything and place the squares in envelopes for later. The paper clips across the tops are to keep each set of the same sheets of paper in order without have to flip through the pages (I did that before I sat down to do this project). My plan is to write three positive things everyday for the whole year. On January 1, 2015 I’m going to pour out the pretty on a table and read through memory lane.
I folded my paper as small as I could because a whole year (minus January, late start) has to fit inside. What have I noticed so far about writing things down? It makes you think, truly think. It makes you realize how much or how little you did with your day. Some days all I could think to write about was the nice weather or how smoothly things went at work. Or about how my functioning car got me home or how once I got home, that was just it: I was home. On the flip side, I’ve noticed how boring my days are sometimes. So on the days where I’ve successfully finished a garment, reached a goal or got started on something I’ve been meaning to start, I’m finding that I want to do more in order to have those types of things to write down. This is a great motivational tool. I highly recommend it.
Now for some more super cool ideas for your jar!
Use plenty of red here. Roses, lace, and pearls could all be used to adorn your jar. Write little love notes on perfumed paper. Do you know how to fold an origami heart? You can even mix in some chocolates.
Write down all the amazing things you can think of about the person. Dress up your jar in their favorite colors with some of their favorite things. How about some of your favorite memories together? You could even decoupage pictures around the jar.
Continue the theme from their wedding into the jar. Have guests write notes to the newly weds. Anything from well wishes to advice or even a short joke or anecdote. They could either open it after the wedding or a year later on their first anniversary.
Get Well Soon
As mentioned above make a jar filled with kind things for someone who isn’t feeling so hot. Whenever they’re feeling blue they can reach in and read something positive.
Sometimes you don’t need a reason to be nice to someone.
Celebrate a relationship (mother, daughter, father, son, cousin, uncle, aunt, friend, in-law,) with a slew of awesome memories. Anyone who is nostalgic like me would appreciate the ride down memory lane. Mother’s day and father’s day gifts maybe?
This works especially well with a wide mouth mason jar, probably medium-sized. Decorate the jar and leave out the removable lid. Stick you hand in and grab some goodness.
Know someone who is really into sports? What about someone who lives on their motorcycle? Into art? These could be really cool themes for a jar.
General Tips: Here are some of the ideas mentioned above as well as more general embellishments! This list is not exhaustive so feel free to add to it in the comments below!
- chalkboard paint
- dyed paper
- plush toys
- other types of glass jars or containers in varying sizes
As promised, the first mason jar.