Budget Fall Centerpieces

 

jars in a row2

There was an interesting thing posted on Facebook this week. The most popular post on Hometalk last year was some simple Budget Fall Centerpieces. They had a whopping 1.5 million views. Wow, that’s a lot of page views! They were simple and beautiful, I can see why everyone liked them.

They weren’t my page views however. If they were, you would have heard me screaming all the way in Texas.

Daisies topside

I am slow to decorate for fall, I like minimal decorations that are easy to put away when it’s time to being out the splashier holiday decor. I also am not a huge fan of orange, but it’s growing on me.

One of my friends asked me to help out with some fall decorations for a dinner party. I had fun putting these together.

Modern Masters paint

I started with some quart size mason jars, you can never have too many of them. They make great vases.

I painted the jars gold with this paint from Modern Masters. This color sample was given to me at a blog conference earlier this year. I love how bright this gold color is! I gave each jar 2 coats of paint. Modern Masters is known for their high quality metallic paints. This gold is so rich looking!

wpid-Photo-Sep-8-2015-310-PM.jpg

The flowers all came from the Dollar Tree. These are faux Gerbera Daisies, leaves, and burlap patterned leaves along with some faux Millet and interesting grasses.

I cut the stems apart to fit into the jars without popping out. There are dried beans in the bottom of the jars that I use to keep the flowers in place, I use them for candles too.

Jar and bow

A bit of twine and bi-colored bakers twine finish the jars. I am not one for huge bows, I like simplicity.

Perfect for a simple dinner party.

Colorful and inexpensive, these 6 jars cost less than $20.00 to make.

What could be simpler than that?

Who knows, it may even be worth a million page views!

Stenciled Storage Jars

lead

 

 

Happy Friday!

I always seem to be rushing through the end of the week, eager for the weekend to start.

My Fridays are the busiest day of all, and it seems like it takes me days to wind down. Perhaps thats why I need the weekend so badly.

This week, I started a number of projects, one of them was labeling these storage jars in the kitchen pantry.

Shelf with jars

I have had these jars for years without labels. I tried a couple of times to label them, but I didn’t like the way the stick-on labels looked.

These jars were one of our first purchases after we got married. My husband and I both agreed that buying in bulk was better and these large capacity jars were an easy choice for storing all sorts of dry goods.

We have used them over and over.

Most of the time I store flours, sugar, 2X sugar, brown sugar, grains and other baking supplies this way.

I love that they are washable and you can easily see what’s inside the jar.

supplies

To label the jars, I used these supplies from Decoart: Gloss Enamels Stick-On Stencils, 3D Frost Gloss Enamel in black, and Media Brush and Stencil Cleaner.

Instructions:

Wash jars with soap and water. Dry thoroughly. Clean area to be stenciled with rubbing alcohol.

Apply stencils, pressing all edges down securely. Apply several coats of the Gloss Enamel paint, allowing each coat to dry between applications. Do not remove stencils until the final coat is dry.

Bake jars in a 300 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Allow jars to cool in oven.

Let the jars cure for at least 4 days before washing them.

finished jars

I like how the labels turned out, I probably should have done a better job of sticking the stencils on them before painting.

There were a couple of places where the paint seeped underneath the stencils. I was able to use a Q-tip to clean up the graphics here and there before the paint dried on completely.

I like the worn effect this paint has on the glass. It looks old and used to me, which makes it a good fit for my vintage kitchen.

There are those perfectionists in the crowd who may not like the uneven look of this paint. You know who you are.

I am anxious to label more jars with this method!

Do you use storage jars in your kitchen? How do you label them?

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Mason Jar Gifts (Repost)

designerssweetspot.com

It’s been a difficult summer so far for the garden. The last few weeks have brought heavy rains in our area and most folks are finding their crops to be late.

Things are too wet, and too cool here as well.

Our new location doesn’t have a vegetable garden at all. I am greatly missing the beautiful garden we had last year.

I am planning a new one for next season.

For those of you that will have good crops this year, here’s the links to my 31 Days of Mason Jar Gifts series I did last year.

Some of the projects are canning, some of them are crafts.

All are a great way to fill your pantry for the gift season, coming soon.

Meanwhile I am off to the Haven Conference.

I can’t wait to tell you all about it!

 

 

 

Here’s the Gifts Wrapped in Glass Wrap-Up! Be sure and catch up on any posts you missed!
Day 1: Homemade Ketchup
Day 2: Mason Jar Terrariums
Day 3: Mason Jar Candles
Day 4: Mason Jar Snow Globes
Day 5: Mason Jars for Pets
Day 6: Dilly Beans
Day 7: The Knitting Jar
Day 8: Almond Hand Creme
Day 9: The Sewing Jar
Day 10: Italian Gift Jars
Day 11: Spicy Dill Pickles
Day 12: Ombre Mason Jars
Day 13: The Gardener’s Jar
Day 14: Fermented Dill Pickles
Day 15: Orange Bath Salts
Day 16: PJ’s in a Jar
Day 17: Apple Butter
Day 18: Homemade Maple Syrup
Day 19: Map Garland in a Jar
Day 20: Jar of Roses
Day 21: Honey Almond Soap
Day 22: Scented Diffuser Jar
Day 23: Pumpkin Pie in a Jar
Day 24: Lemon Jelly
Day 25: Cranberry-Apple Relish
Day 26: The Soap Dispenser
Day 27: Sweet Pickle Relish
Day 28: Orange Cranberry Marmalade
Day 29: Artist’s Jar
Day 30: Homemade Yogurt
Day 31: Homemade Muesli

Dirt Cake in a Jar

Dirt Cake @designerssweetspot.com

I went a little crazy with mason jars last fall. I still am crazy about them. Everything seems to look better in a jar. Food tastes better in a jar, too.

Even birthday cake.

Even Dirt Cake.

Who doesn’t love Dirt?

My son decided that Dirt was on the menu for his birthday. Today, we had a blast making these yummy concoctions!

Dirt Cake in Mason jars @designerssweetspot.com

 

I love serving food in mason jars. I hope this trend is around to stay! It’s easy to dish out the right size portions. There is always one joker in the crowd who thinks HE should get the biggest helping.

Not any more! The jars look great on a tray, and you can even dress it up by using the decorative cut glass jelly jars instead of the plain ones.  I like to chill or freeze the jars for a cool treat on a warm day. I add chocolate protein mix to the pudding to make this dish a bit healthier!

This cake is super easy:

Dirt Cake in a Jar

Dirt Cake in a Jar

Ingredients

  • 2 Large Packages instant chocolate pudding
  • 2-4 scoops chocolate protein powder
  • 6 cups 2% milk
  • 1 16 oz. tub of non-dairy whip topping
  • 1 carton of chocolate sandwich cookies, some crushed
  • Gummy worms for decoration
  • 6 half pint mason jars

Instructions

  1. Combine the milk and pudding in a large bowl. Whisk together, adding protein powder. Chill for 5 minutes until partially set. Meanwhile, crush the cookies in a plastic baggie with a rolling pin, learning some cookies whole for garnish. When pudding begins to set, spoon into jars. Make one layer of pudding, whip topping, and crushed cookies, then repeat. Finish with the rest of the cookies crumbs, a gummy worm and a split cookies for the top.
  2. You can chill the jars in the refrigerator (soft set) or freezer (firm set) until needed. It's easy to move them around by setting them in a muffin tin.

Gifts Wrapped in Glass: Day 2

I have been trying to write this post all day long. I started out with good intentions this morning, but there have been a number of things that have gotten in the way. Namely, one little green, slimy thing. But, I am getting ahead of myself….this is my story:
I went outside on the deck this morning to fetch these two little succulents that I had purchased earlier in the summer for todays GIFTS WRAPPED IN GLASS project.  It was a beautiful sunny morning. I had stuck these little plants in a red makeup case with a few rocks early in the summer and I know they will need to come inside as the weather is cooling off. I reached over to grab them…..
 and………..
(do you see it?)
 and……..
and I spotted this little green froggy in my container. I screamed bloody murder and went dashing back into the house for protection. After I recovered myself I came back outside with my camera and took these photos. I came to the realization that without intending to, I had created a perfect ecosystem for him in this little mini-garden. I had rocks of different shapes and sizes, sun and some shade, lush vegetation and source of regular water (me). Who knew?
Needless to say, I did not touch the plants. I came back an hour later. Yup, he was still there. Then I came back after lunch, sure enough the little bugger hadn’t moved. Darn. So I went shopping hoping he would be gone when I got back.
I bought these cute little wooden tags at Hobby Lobby for today’s project. I stenciled a monogram on them for each jar using a Sharpie pen and some small stick on stencils.
I also bought this little fairy garden Polka-Dot plant for today’s project. Every where I went, I saw a little green frog in the back of my mind. I began to feel very guilty for destroying the little guy’s ecosystem. I bought some replacement plants to switch with the succulents that I needed for this project.
I also got a small bag of potting soil from the garden center and some raffia. Then I went to the pet store and picked up a bag of aquarium pebbles and a bag of activated charcoal.
I had plenty of Mason Jars on hand to choose from. When I got home, I pulled out several styles of wide mouth jars. This jar is technically not a Mason, but my succulent was too wide to fit in the jar that I had planned to use. It’s a jar, so it counts. Right?
I began to plant the jars by layering the pebbles, charcoal and potting soil but then the phone rang and I had my hand stuck down in the jar and spilled the whole works trying to get to the phone. I decided to hell with it, and mixed all the ingredients together, and filled the jars about 1/3 full.
Mason jar with succulent @designerssweetspot.com
Mason Jar Terrarium
Then I added the plants, and gave them a bit of water. The charcoal keeps the plant and soil from getting moldy. It really works well in containers that don’t have any drainage.
You can use any number of plants in the jars: succulents, ferns, etc. Your garden center can help you choose what is most appropriate.
Then I added some raffia and the wooden tags. I also put the Mason jar bands over the top of the jars for a finished look. I was going to add some moss on top of the soil and a few decorative stones, but my jars didn’t seem to need it.
I did find room for a craft store butterfly though. Grandma’s silver tray just seemed to make the whole works more interesting.
As for froggy, well, he is still there. He’s still traumatized by my screaming at him. I can see it in his eyes, the poor dear.