DIY Tutorial – Doily Embellished Jars

Pinterest is a dangerous place for me. It gives me all sorts of ideas for new products and home DIY that I really don’t have the time or space for in my life. But I love it, so I tackle new projects all the time.

Lately I have been inspired by the images of doily-clad mason jars, glowing with the light of a candle inside or sitting prettily on lovely furniture that obviously does not belong to someone with small children.

Image & associated tutorial from Crafts by Amanda

After a bit of research I decided to give it a go and possibly make them a new little product to my gift range at Cordelle.

There are lots of tutorials out there for this kind of thing (like the one above), but I thought I would just share the process I took and show you the end result.

Doily Embellished Jars

I have a big collection of vintage and thrifted doilies from many trips to op-shops and a swag of crochet goodness I inherited from my grandmothers and great-grandmother. If you are starting from scratch, a little hunt through your local op-shops should see you come home with some pretty doilies to use. Just keep in mind the size and shape of the jars you might use and how much of the jar you want to cover.

I bought my jars (500ml preserving jars) from the local discount store but you could just as easily use recycled coffee or jam jars if you like. You could even use a vase! Let your imagination run wild!

You will also need Mod Podge, which you can purchase from art and craft stores (I bought a 118ml bottle from Spotlight for $8.99). There are many different types of Mod Podge so to give you a guide, I bought the matte version for use on all surfaces. Now, some people will tell you that you can make your own with PVA glue and water but after some more research I discovered that this formula can give varied results and will yellow and/or flake over time. As I was considering selling what I created I didn’t want to compromise on quality so I decided firmly on ‘true blue’ Mod Podge. For more information on the comparison between home-made and real Mod Podge see here.

You will also need a paint brush, a glass or ceramic dish, scissors, rubber bands (3 or 4 per jar) and a damp dish cloth. You may also like some disposable rubber/latesx gloves (not dishwashing gloves) if you don’t want to get your hands all Mod Podgey. Have everything ready and at your fingertips as you will need to work quickly.


Jars, Mod Podge and a collection of doilies ready to go

First, take your clean and dry jars and experiment with where and how you want the doilies to laid out. When wet doilies stretch a little so take this into account.

Once you are happy with your designs and combinations you can begin the messy bit. Take one doily at a time and place it in the dish. Squirt Mod Podge over the top and massage it into the fibres so that it is saturated. Squeeze out any excess before carefully laying the doily on the glass jar. Gently massage the doily into place, trimming or folding the edges if necessary. Once you have the doily in the right spot keep it in place with 3 or 4 rubber bands around the jar. Repeat with any remaining jars and doilies.


Using a glass or ceramic dish makes clean up easier. Wash while wet with hot water and soap.

You can fold down the edge of the doily if it doesn't fit - it makes a pretty feature!

You can fold down the edge of the doily if it doesn’t fit – it makes a pretty feature!

Make sure you have space to lay your jars down. The rubber bands also stop them from slipping around.

Make sure you have space to lay your jars down. The rubber bands also stop them from slipping around.


Use rubber bands to keep things in place

You will notice that there will be some excess Mod Podge around the doily from moving it around. Take your damp dish cloth and wrap it around your index finger. Gently wipe away the excess so you have a nice clean look.

Do your jars have lids? Do you want to use the lids? As mine did have lids and I wanted to use them to provide the option of using the jars as storage I needed to do something to cover up the bright red and white checked pattern that didn’t really go with the vintage look of the doilies.

I had some spare calico (you could use any coordinating fabric) that I thought would make a nice neutral cover for the lids. To do similar you will need to find something circular that is 2-3cm larger than the lid to trace around. I had a container of circle cookie cutters (whatever works!). Trace with a pencil and cut out the circles.



Trace and cut circles from your fabric to cover the lids

Once you have all your circles ready, paint the top of the lid and halfway down the sides of the lid with Mod Podge. Position the fabric circle on top and push down the sides, securing with another rubber band. Make sure it sits nicely and fans out at the bottom as it will dry in place.

Apply a thin coat of the Mod Podge to the lids.

Apply a thin coat of the Mod Podge to the lids.



Place the rubber bands where you imagine the ribbon going when you get to the embellishment stage

Another option for the lids is to paint with Mod Podge and spiral jute or baker’s twine around, starting from the bottom lip up the sides and into the centre of the top of the lid. Coat with Mod Podge once finished. This would be fiddly but would look very effective!

Leave your jars to dry for 24 hours.

Once dry the doilies will feel hard. Remove the rubber bands and inspect for any sections that might need a reapplication. If all is good you can start thinking about embellishments!

Collect ribbons, charms, buttons, fabric flowers, lace – whatever you have on hand – and experiment with your designs. You might like to Mod Podge extra lace around the jar, tie ribbons around the middle or top of the jar, or glue your embellishments on. I used E6000 glue as it is what I always have on hand for my jewellery-making. You may also like to tie or Mod Podge/glue ribbon around the lid to finish off the fabric cover.

This is how my jars turned out.

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They will debut for sale at the Made With Love Markets on Sunday 17th March.

You can use the jars for storage.


This would look so cute in a shabby chic craft room!


Or you can pop a tea light candle in the bottom to make a pretty luminary.


And remember…


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