I wish I was one of those bloggers that could just give you a simple tutorial without any additional tales from hell behind the craft. But then you’d be bored and I’d be bored and that doesn’t bode well for anyone.
You know, write a “Here’s a simple technique to help you spray paint a jar. Steps 1, 2, 3 – Easy Peasy!”
Listen, if you use the term “easy peasy” in your blog tutorials, I am unfollowing you as soon as I finish writing this post. Unless you are talking to your 3 year old, no grown adult should be telling anyone anything is easy peasy unless they are in an SNL skit about Martha Stewart.
Because what most bloggers don’t tell you is that behind a lot of the crafts and DIY projects they show, lie about 10 attempts of trial and error, burnt skin courtesy of their glue gun and a lot of cursing before things go well and a technique is mastered. This is mostly applicable when one is trying out new projects for the first time while following really bad Pinterest tutorial instructions. That tell you things are easy peasy.
This is the case with what really happens when you try and paint glass. In this case a jar. Not a mason jar.
Are we done with the mason jars yet?
I’ve seen the tutorials on how to coat the inside of the jar with paint. Which involves a delicate rolling around of paint, sometimes mixed with Mod Podge or glue, depending on if it’s paint or food colouring to tint the jar. What bloggers often don’t show you is all the streaks that can appear inside the jar if you coat one side with too much paint and royally screw it up, so they’ll photograph it on the other side. On the amazing chance that you get everyone of your jars done perfectly, then continue on with your easy peasy self.
But painting the outside of a jar is a whole other ball game of fun.
Especially with spray paint.
Now my husband is a far better painter than I am so he’s the one who has taught me how to slow the hell down and properly paint glass. When I first started I would do the typical thing. Attack the glass with the spray paint and then lose my shit when I saw paint dripping down the side ruining the projects. And trust me I have ruined a lot of stuff with my impatience.
So in order to move the blog world away from mason jars to other jars – say pickle jar in this case…and in this case – I am going to share with you how I did this project. I wanted to create a jar that had writing on it that I could essentially use as a lantern with a battery operated candle inside it. I am testing out stuff for my daughter’s camping themed birthday party coming up at the end of this month.
Yes that is a Coldplay song on it – A Sky Full of Stars. Yes I love Coldplay. Yes my husband makes fun of me for this. Yes I did chicken out from meeting them in real life one time at MuchMusic. And my dear friend Kathryn, I know we chatted about the whole Chris Martin flower in the guitar thing in the corresponding music video. This one is for you.
PS – This could also be a pencil holder or storage. It could be a decoration. Hell put a plant in it and call it a planter. Or vase.
Whatever it is, this is how you should paint it so you do not get angry and throw the jar against a wall because of unnecessary paint drips.
#1) Get some stickers and a jar. Clean the jar very well. Let it dry. These fancy stickers cost $2 at Walmart. Put the stickers in the phrase that you want onto your jar.
#2) Go to your painting space. Our garage in my case. Shake your spray paint can. Shake it for about 1 min. Properly.
The first spray from your spray paint can should be at a piece of cardboard or something you can afford to ruin. Get the first couple of sprays out to ensure there is no splatter or messed up nozzle or anything.
#3) Once you are sure your spray paint is coming out smoothly, step BACK from the jar approximately 12″ (1 foot). Cans usually suggest 10″ to 16″. I’ll bet over half the people that use them, do not pay attention to this rule. I know, I used to be one of them. That’s where my anger came into play.
#4) Moving your can back and forth lightly mist your jar with paint. Think of it like the first sheer coat of nail polish. Don’t go coating it with a huge amount of paint or drips and uneven globs of paint will happen. I repeat, LIGHTLY MIST.
#5) After the jar is misted, walk the hell away and let it dry for about 10-15 mins. Come back, repeat step misting steps. Do as many layers as you need to ensure an opaque coating.
Doing this will decrease the chances of your jar getting covered unevenly and be consumed with paint drips.
It takes a little longer, but it really helps.
#6) Using an Xacto knife, go around the edges of the stickers to remove them. Don’t go peeling them off with your fingers as you risk peeling off the paint outside the letters. I’ve read that people should take them off while they’re still wet but I have never been able to do that successfully without ruining the overall paint job. So this is what I do now.
If you have any excess sticky residue, scrub it off with your Xacto knife or use a pencil eraser to get most of it off. Then wipe it all clean with a dry cloth.
I also spray painted the inside of this jar with white paint to create the contrasting letters. So that at night when my flameless candle is in it, it will highlight them.
Please don’t use a real candle if you paint the inside of your jar. Paint and fire in a small confined space together, not the best combo ever. Are we understood?
#7) Revel in your Sky Full of Stars. Which is going in our home office.
I’m kidding. I had to. Because there’s also another rule about blogging that one must show as many photos as humanely possible of a project.
Was this easy peasy?
I don’t know. Depends on if you’re a patient person. I am not. But if you are, yes then it is. Does it work? Definitely. Especially if you want full coverage spray paint and even crisp lines from your stencils on your glass.
Maybe I should have saved this for Halloween.
Oh like I won’t make another pickle jar craft by then. Have you learned nothing from my blog this summer? Anyone got a contact for Bick’s Pickles?