DIY Mason Jar Tutorial How to Make Blue Vintage Mason Jars

Mon 16th, Sep, 2013

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Well hellllloooo lovelies, something good today, if there’s one thing I love and one thing I am asked a lot it is how to get blue vintage mason jars on a budget, and today, the lovely Catherine is here with a DIY Mason Jar tutorial showing us just that – how to make blue vintage mason jars without taking out a mortgage and using jam / mason jars that you already have…sound good? oh yeah baby, grab a coffee, pull on your making things pants and come into craft land, this is a goodie. 

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 As you can see blue vintage mason jars have been around here a fair bit and so when Catherine showed me this tutorial on how to make your own version (not that I have a tonne of mason jars stashed around this place, of course not!), I thought this will be interesting, so I’ll hand you over to Catherine with this excellent diy blue mason jar tutorial.

Hi Beach Cottage friends, Catherine here today, how are you?

Did you know that this year marks the 100th anniversary of the modern Ball Mason jar? We grew up using Ball jars for home canning and storing all kinds of things; in my mind they’re a real icon of North American domestic practicality. They’re good looking too, and from my experience starting up The Spring Shop (my shop’s over here if you want a look) I know I’m not the only one who thinks so!

The very first Mason jars were produced in Colorado from the 1880s in either an amber coloured glass or a luminous turquoise but the design we know and love has been going strong since 1913. If you stumble upon a blue Mason jar these days it’s either very old or comes from the limited edition Heritage Collection being produced just this year to celebrate the Ball company’s milestone. Either way, for the true Mason aficionado, blue jars young and old have become rare, coveted prizes.


I’ve been experimenting with ways to get the iconic look DIY-style and on a tight budget, and after a fair bit of trial and error have come up with a fool-proof way to get an even tint that, once oven baked, is permanent and dishwasher safe. I’ve done a collection of these jars in a few different sizes that look great as flower vases, drinking glasses and lanterns when fitted with a wire handle for hanging, some sand, and a tea light.

For this project you’ll need:

  • Mason jars
  • a plastic cup
  • a skewer (or some kind of stirring stick)
  • one pot of Pebeo Vitrea 160 glass paint in turquoise
  • one pot of Pebeo Vitrea 160 dilutant.

I picked up my Pebeo paints from the local Spotlight craft store but you can also find these products online here.


DIY Mason Jar Tutorial

How to Make Blue Vintage Mason Jars


1. In the plastic cup mix a pea sized daub of turquoise paint with about a teaspoon of the dilutant using your stirring stick.


2. Pour the runny paint mixture into one of the jars and hold it horizontally, turning the jar around and around until all the sides and bottom are coated. Pour the excess paint back into the plastic cup.


3. Place the jar upside down on a rack with wax paper underneath to collect the drips. If you don’t have a rack that you’re willing to get paint all over, you can just place the jars upside down on wax paper but you’ll have to wipe excess paint from the mouth of the jar before baking.

4. Repeat for as many jars as you want to tint. Leave the jars to dry for 24 hours.


5. Place the jars on a lined baking dish in the middle of your oven before heating the oven to 160C (320F). Bake for 40 minutes then turn off the oven leaving the jars inside to cool slowly.


Tip: You might come across other tutorials instructing you to paint the outside of your Mason jars. I tried this method on a few jars first (with and without dilutant) but the result was always too streaky for my liking. After some experimentation I’m confident that the swirling technique is your best bet!


I hope you like the look of it…guess who will be swirling very soon?


You can find ways I use Mason Jars in my life here, here, here and here. xo
Did you miss this week’s Beach Cottage Newsletter?  what do newsletter friends get?  an extra little post from me all the way from the beaches – get on board x

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20 Responses to “DIY Mason Jar Tutorial How to Make Blue Vintage Mason Jars”

  1. Helen says:

    Hello Sarah and Catherine
    What a great tutorial, the only problem I can see is the list of resources needed to complete this project is missing, I’m not sure if anyone else has this problem?
    Kind regards

    • Alison says:

      Helen, the list of ingredients are in hidden text just highight that area as if you were going to highlight it and it will show:
      Here it is for you
      Mason jars
      a plastic cup
      a skewer (or some kind of stirring stick)
      one pot of Pebeo Vitrea 160 glass paint in turquoise
      one pot of Pebeo Vitrea 160 dilutant.

    • Catherine says:

      Helen, sorry about that list hiding – we’ll try to fix it up on the post! Thanks for letting us know. x Catherine

  2. Tricia says:

    Thank you for understanding my silent envy at your abundance of blue Mason jars. I am looking forward to making my own and sharing more blue glass love. Great job, ladies!

  3. Alison says:

    That second “highlight” should have read “select it to copy it”

  4. mandy meza says:

    I was very lucky,i went to an estate sale in california and i found 3 original blue ball jars with the glass lids,and the cost $1 each,my favourite vintage find.I know live in scotland and we don’t get them here,everyone that see them in my kitchen want them….x

    • Catherine says:

      ooh, SUCH good luck! Those antique blue ball jars are real collectors pieces and cost and arm and a leg ordinarily. Now I have mason jar envy! x Catherine

  5. [...] Today I’m blogging over at A Beach Cottage with a super easy DIY tutorial on how to make blue vintage mason jars. This is glass tinting, not painting, so the jars capture the light just like the original early 20th century Blue Ball jars. For all the details, click over here… [...]

  6. Diana says:

    This is fun! Our son works for Ball Aerospace and ever since he started there I have been collecting Ball jars. Just love them!
    Now I can have fun using the clear ones turned blue.
    Ball has recently come out with “vintage” new blue jars.
    They are a reasonable price and ready to use for canning or whatever.

    • Catherine says:

      I love the new ‘vintage’ blue Ball jars… they’re so beautiful and inspired this DIY. Your’e so lucky to have a mason jar hook up – they can be hard to get here in Australia! x Catherine

  7. Rukmini Roy says:

    Beautiful! I made a bunch of them in purple and it turned out really well.
    Sarah- I love how you hang your jars in the deck. Do you have a fixture that supports them together or hooks? I’d love to do that on my terrace.

  8. Rukmini Roy says:

    Also, great tut Catherine. Just back from springblog and Im following you henceforth :)

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Rukmini – Thanks so much for that! And just to throw my two cents into the hanging jars on the deck questions, I use little teacup hooks and screw them into the wooden beams of my deck… they won’t take a lot of weight, but they’ve been ok for mason jars (I just have to remember to bring them inside during tropical storms!)

      x Catherine

  9. Lisa Mckenzie says:

    Lovely the blue is such a beautiful colour ,thanks for the tutorial Catherine and Sarah!

  10. Alice says:

    thank you… thank you… thank you… a million times thank you!

  11. Janice says:

    I’ve just ordered my Vitrea supplies & can’t wait to get started on my projects. Your technique seems to have less streaking compared to others I’ve seen online.

  12. Cerise says:

    The other day I was at Walmart & of course they sell mason jars but they also sell gallon size mason jars really cool. That would be cool for a big hanging light in the middle & a lot of little ones going around it to hang from the ceiling or on each side to hang above a bar.