Monday, July 16, 2012

Mason Jar Shelf- Mission Organization

So, if you anything like me.... and Lord help you if you are. You're always looking for new ways to improve your craft space. I swear it's an on going endeavor. I will never be done, never satisfied. I'm pretty sure someone could give me 10 thousand dollars to create a room and I'd still be changing things around in 6 months trying to improve it for my style of crafting. That's the tricky part isn't it? I mean I can see something I love in another space, try it out and utterly hate it. May look pretty may be functional, but I may hate it. You just never know. Anywho, in efforts to get some things off my tables for more space to work and to tidy up the appearance while adding some appeal I began working on a shelf one afternoon. Nothing special.. hell most garages have this very shelf in some form with different modifications. Heck the ever popular peg board that I also have... found in millions of garages. Maybe that's what I need.. a garage... haha. Okay so thought I'd share this project because it's ubber cute, functional and my all time fave CHEAP and EASY...(no comments needed on that) hee hee. This organization mission was to move heavy/big/bulky things I wanted off the table, but also to move some things out of my 7 yr olds reach. She's been crafting and taking over more and more lately. it's become apparent to me if I don't want it used or touched I need it up and away... haha.

Okay, I began with a trip to the hardware store. For this project crap chipwood is NOT okay. Do you hear me.. NOT okay. You'll regret it most definitely, because of the weight and the cheap board. You want a nice sturdy board for this.. real wood. Just like grandpa used. And I'm not being stuck up. I have cheapo shelves in my room as well, just not for something like this. I choose a 1 (inch thick)x12 (inches wide)x6 (foot long). The board cost $8.96. Then I bought 2 sets of 12 large Mason jars. In retrospect I would have gone for the wide mouth jars not the normal mouth jars. Those were $7.00 each for a total of 14 bucks. 3 heavy duty brackets alittle over a buck a piece. I choose heavy duty ones because I knew I would be putting heavy big objects onto the shelf. Making stability very important. Throw in some 1/2-3/4 inch screws, anchors and longer screws, 2 meter sticks and you have this shelf. Pictures and tutorial below.

I choose L brackets that gave me a bit of gap off the wall to give me more space on the shelf. it provided a small 1-1.5 inch gap along the wall. I wasn't putting anything small up there so I wasn't worried about things falling behind it. Then measure to make sure there's a bracket at each end and one in the middle. Then take your level and measure in between of the braces. Get the spacing you like. Now don't be a blonde as I was in the beginning, trying to measure them far enough apart to get my hands in between them to to unscrew them. DUUUH you will be grabbing them from under most likely. I still kept them spaced 4 inches apart and 2.75 inches between rows. This allowed this 6ft shelf to hold all 24 jars. I did not stain the wood as well I when i got done doing what I wanted you can't see any of the shelf looking onto it.

This is what it looked like after shelf was put up. Now hind sight and all, more stability could have been added by moving the end L brackets more inside the board. However you'll see in lower pictures I have alot on it and all is well, now bowing or anything. Don't mind all the mess because after this shelf was made i went on a rampage on my room... those pics to come in a future post.

How lovely!!! They just look darn pretty not even filled.

Pretty when filled.

Owwwwww....AWWWWWWWW Ribbons all sorted. I also filled the jars with my threads and twines in the back, and some vintage ribbon and lace jars.

I then added my meter sticks. I applied Tim Holtz dyes, stains and inks repeatedly to get the desired colors I was going for. You can see this is much lighter then how it ended up in the end. I love that not only is it pretty but functional as well for measuring out strips of ribbon.

The darker wood.

Pretty... pretty pretty jars!

Sneak peak of the shelf. I also used an overhead light piece I kidnapped form work because I loved it 6 months ago. I now know I need a few more.. hee hee. Great for slipping things to that I don't use often. Maybe even layouts!!! Anyways, it's working great for what I wanted it to. Big stuff is now off the desks but still very accessible when I need it. Later this week I'll share the pictures of the before and after of the room.

Dog Days of Winter Link Up


  1. Very cute and creative way to store your fibers and other things.

  2. Awesome ways to store things........tfs

  3. Love seeing all the beautiful colors in the jars - great job!

  4. What a great idea...glad I saw your post! I just have one question: could you please explain or show how you attached the mason jar lids to the wood on the underside of the shelf? I would like to do this project!!

  5. Of course I'm sorry it does appear i skipped that piece. We took 2 1/2 inch screws and screwed them in from the bottom. i used to mastly to ensure if I put heavier things in it that it would hold and not strip out.

  6. So I understand then that you took the mason jar metal canning lid with the metal jar ring already on it and then just screwed through the canning lid with the screws? That way when you need to get something out of the jar, you can just unscrew the glass section off the top, yes? That means that the metal lid is holding the whole didn't have any bending probably because there aren't very heavy things in the jars. Forgive me for asking all these questions, but as I said I would like to make something similar to this and will post a photo when I am finished if you are interested. I, too, like to make sure that everything will be strong enough!

  7. yes, the lids are the normal 2 part canning lids. Center and then rim parts. Screwed to board. Yes all i have to do is unscrew them. I do refered to bending of the shelf yes.. but what i was sayign was I didn't have any bending and I have alot on top of it. yes there's also not alot of weight in the jars however if youw anted to do heavier jars- and heavy on top I would recommend the a much thicker board and longer screws going into the board from the jar lids. Does all of this help?

  8. Great shelf and love how you incorporated the measuring stick. How creative! Now you just need to hang scissors and you are all set. My father has something similar in his workroom but he used baby jars many eons ago. He has used it for years and it still is great! I am sure you will enjoy it and get great use from it!

  9. I'm borrowing your idea - using mason jars for my scrap ribbon. :) Thanks for linking up so many cool projects at One Tough Mother! Hope to see you back next Monday!


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