Those who’ve read my book know I’m a huge fan of versatile items – from both a minimalist and ecological standpoint, I think it’s better to own one multi-functional item than several single-function ones. In my opinion, the more uses something has, the more worthy a place in our households.
When it comes to multi-functional items, I’m hard-pressed to think of a better workhorse than the humble mason jar. Besides their obvious use for canning and storing food, they can fill myriad other roles in our homes: from serving as lanterns, to drinkware, to impromptu piggy banks.
The best part: they can do double-duty as both storage and décor. Instead of buying mass-produced tchotchkes, consider “decorating” your home with the stuff of your everyday life. It’s elegant, inexpensive, and makes you truly mindful of what you own.
Consider the following ways to put mason jars to work in your home:
1. Kitchen storage/décor. Displaying dry foods in glass jars – like pasta, beans, coffee, and spices – are a wonderful way to add warmth to your minimalist kitchen.
2. Bathroom storage/décor. Use them to hold cotton balls, q-tips, or bath salts for a serene, spa-like look.
3. Laundry room. Powdered detergent is prettier in a glass jar than commercial packaging. (Make your own, so you can skip the packaging altogether!)
4. Vase. A mason jar makes a lovely, simple vase for a single bloom or small bunch of flowers.
5. Lanterns. I love the look of white candles or tea lights in glass jars – so beautiful!
6. Office supplies. Use them to corral all those loose paperclips, rubberbands, or pencils.
7. Paint. A great way to store your paint so you can actually see the color.
8. Hardware. Fill them with screws, nails, bolts, and all those other bits and bobs on your workbench.
9. Drinkware. Nothing says summer like a mint julep or iced tea served in a mason jar.
10. Terrarium. For some low-maintenance greenery, make a terrarium: all you need is potting soil, pea gravel, activated charcoal, and some moisture-loving plants.
11. Piggy bank. There’s something very satisfying about seeing all that spare change accumulate.
12. Craft supplies. Beads, buttons, and embroidery floss are gorgeous in their own right – and make more interesting décor than mass-produced trinkets.
13. Natural décor. Glass jars of sand, stones, seashells, and other natural treasures lend a nice organic touch to any room.
14. Gifts. Homemade mixes in mason jars make wonderful gifts. Layer the dry ingredients for a decadent treat – like hot cocoa, or chocolate chip cookies – and attach a label with the recipe.
Do you have any other ideas for using mason jars? Please share them with us in the Comments!