mason jars: painted & distressed

Can I ask you a question?


And I want you to be honest with me.  Brutally honest.


Because sometimes I think I’m just too close to this stuff …



I automatically assume that since I can ~ and will ~ do something like paint and distress a mason jar, that everyone else can … and will.


But then again, that can’t always be the case, right?  Because if that were true, the whole concept behind Etsy – a marketplace where people can sell their handmade and handcrafted goods – would’ve been a failure.  And maybe the success of Etsy shows that in this mass-produced world, people really do value and treasure one-of-a-kind, made-to-order pieces custom made just for them …



… right?


Because this is the juncture where I become confused …  unsure.

You see, I made these hand-painted, hand-distressed mason jars …




And to be honest with you, it wasn’t at all complicated.  A coat of acrylic paint.  An overnight to dry.  And then came the distressing …


On my first try, I used a sanding block.  I didn’t like the effect.  It removed more paint than I wanted. So those mason jars  got a second coat of acrylic.  And a second overnight to dry.


And as they dried, I ran some Target errands.  Which is where I hit upon my “secret sanding weapon” …



… a nail file.


It enabled me to gain better control over paint removal.  And reach small spaces.


The final step:  A coating of water-resistant, scratch-resistant enamel.  This means they can be wiped down, but never, ever submerged in water … or run through the dishwasher.


So now comes my pressing question:


Should I sell hand-painted, hand-distressed mason jars at my Etsy shop?***


Would people really want to buy them …



… from me?

Would they really pay $24 for a set a 4?  Especially when they are so easy to make …


Now it’s your turn. Let me know what you think.  And remember.  Brutal honesty please …

In love

I’ve created a step-by-step tutorial on how to paint and distress mason jars and shared it at my other blog, Mason Jar Crafts Love. You can find it by clicking here …


***Update, I do offer this set of jars along with many other colors and styles at my Etsy shop now and they are selling out left and right!!! So thank you all for your wonderful words of encouragement!!!


Painted and Distressed Mason Jars

I share a full tutorial on how I make my painted and distressed mason jars. Just click here …

Mason Jar Crafts: How To Paint & Distress mason Jars

Looking for more mason jar ideas?  Check out my mason jar project gallery by clicking here …

Mason Jar Craft Ideas

For mason jar craft ideas for kids, I have a book full of fun ideas. Click here for more …

Craft Ideas for Kids Using Mason Jars

Oh, and I’ve gone ahead and stocked these — and more — in my Etsy shop!  Find out more here …

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  1. Lisa Cooper says

    Personally, I wold not buy them from your ETSY shop, but that’s because I would make them myself. But, there are people out there that will buy anything and many people that are not as crafty as we are. So, go for it!!!

  2. says

    Hi:) I love these jars and I believe you can sell them at your Etsy shop, really:) I m good at all kinds of painting and painting is an easy activity for me. İt amazes me when people want to buy one of my painting projects, Because the projects are so easy, everybody can do this I think. Of course this is my opinion. But be sure there are lots of people who knows anything about painting and your jars are a perfect decorative detail for them. You must take a chance, loves from Turkey:)

  3. says

    Hmmmm, they’re beautiful for sure. I love the colors you chose too! But — don’t know if I’d purchase them – or just try to make them myself. Probably the latter. Another thing to consider might be: do you have a fail-free way to ship glass jars without breakage? Just sayin’. ;D

  4. says

    They’re gorgeous! I say go for it. Most people don’t read diy blogs, they don’t even know they exist (at least most people I talk too). Plus they may not want to have to go out and buy all the supplies and then have to take the time to make them. I’ve seen plenty of sellers selling things that I had previously seen made on blogs. What have you got to lose, 20 cents for a listing? It never hurts to try. And if you use pics like those, they are sure to sell! :)

  5. Bonnie says

    Not everyone has the time, desire or talent, and its much easier for them to buy from you! Sell away!
    And who says things cant be easy for you to make, doesnt make them anyless desireable!
    I also love that you seal them, never would have thought of that!!!

  6. says

    I ask myself the same question regarding just about everything I do. I mean, if I can do it, can’t everyone else? I’m no help at all!

  7. says

    I think you should totally sell them! They look so pretty! Love the colors and $24 for a set of six? Seriously? A great gift that’s super affordable!

    :) me

  8. Kim L. says

    I totally think you should. Like others have said, there are lots of people who want to have beautiful, hand-crafted objects in their house but have no interest whatsoever in DIY. They don’t want to buy all that paint, they don’t like the mess, they don’t have the talent, they don’t have the time… the list goes on. I say Sell, sell, sell!

  9. mary says

    I ditto Marian. Why would you even doubt yourself???? As your blog says “It All Started With Paint”.
    PS, they’re beautiful.

  10. Joni says

    I would give it a try — what have you got to lose? I would make these myself, but many wouldn’t. I’m amazed at how many people would rather purchase and enjoy right away, rather than buy the supplies and try it for themselves. I think we ‘crafty-creative types’ underestimate ourselves’ more often than we realize :-)

  11. says

    I doesn’t hurt to try. I have seen other people selling them on etsy, so you would think someone is buying them. And yours are much prettier colors, so would have a leg up on the other sellers.

  12. says

    I think about this all the time. There is a craft I have decided to make for my etsy shop and I am kicking myself for providing a tutorial on my site awhile back. But then it occurred to me that there are people out there who appreciate this stuff but don’t have the time, desire, materials, etc., to do it themselves. Sometimes it’s just easier to buy the item. So I say, go for it! Make a few, list them, and see how it goes. I think they’re beautiful and would totally buy some if I didn’t have 32 Ball jars sitting in my garage looking for a project 😉

  13. martha says

    I love them and think they would sell to the “un-crafty”. I agree with Sally, you must be able to ship them without breakage and at a reasonable price.

  14. says

    They look wonderful. The colors are amazing. The photography is impeccable. I agree with most others – I would make them myself, but there are plenty of people who don’t make things. But they buy things. You’ve got the shop. Give it a try!

  15. Andrea says

    I love them. But I would just make my own. I also refinish nightstands, make drop cloth curtains, and am turn cupboard doors into chalkboards. A lot of people don’t put those things high on their fun list the way I do. I think you should lost some and see how it goes. There are plenty of people who aren’t crafty; I couldn’t make a decent skirt if my life depended on it. You never know, they might sell really well! They definitely say spring to me!

  16. says

    Since they are so easy to make I probably would not by them for 24 dollars. I might think about if if they were $16 or less for 4. And that is really only if I think the $4 a piece is worth the hour of time it would take me to create these when the supplies are so cheap.

  17. Connie Klein says

    You are asking the wrong audience. Most of your readers would look at something you do and think, “I could do that except I would change it this way.” The etsy audience is different, so the only way to know is try.

  18. Crystal Young says

    Umm… I would buy them, they are gorgeous! Love the colors. My Dad had a saying when people would look at something handmade and say “I can make that.” and he’d say, “Yes, but will you?” So, put them on etsy and let me know, I’d like a set!

  19. says

    Absolutely go for it! There are nice women out there who have never been in a craft store in their lives and don’t know what acrylic paint is, but they want beautiful handmade things in their homes, and they want to support cottage industry. Your jars are so pretty. The colors are gorgeous! If they don’t sell, you’ll just have a few pretty jars to give as sweet gifts. Gotta give it a try. I’m pinning to get your advertising started. :)

  20. Penny says

    I love these! I think you could sell them, just like the others have said some don’t like to paint but appreciate those that do! What colors did you use? They would look amazing in my kitchen!

  21. says

    Why not? What have you got to lose? Like some other people said, some of us could make them ourselves, but others can’t or don’t want to take the time to do so. I think they’re beautiful – go for it!

  22. Sandie says

    Try it, it just might do pretty well. There are weddings coming up don’t forget. The style of mason jars won’t last too much longer after summer I am thinking.. Good luck!

  23. says

    I love your jars and have been wanting to paint one myself.

    I think that you should go for it. Everybody will love them, but not everyone will want to make their own which leaves you to do the making.

    good luck!

  24. says

    So pretty! I say you should try to sell them. For me personally, when I see stuff like this that seems easy on etsy, I try to do it myself. BUT, then there are people, like my sister, who hate doing anything crafty and she would totally pay $24 to not do it herself!

  25. Angie says

    Okay,so I’m curious on what product you found that is water resistant and scratch resistant enamel? I’ve just starting painting glass (not mason jars-yet) and would love to know what to put over the paint! :) YOur jars are beautiful!

  26. Jaimie says

    Hi, I was wondering where to find scratch/water resistant enamel?! These are beautiful! Anything with mason jars I love!!

  27. says

    You should absolutely sell them! They might be easy to make but just because people have the ability to make them doesn’t mean that they will. I would make them because I like crafts. BUT there are people that like to look and buy rather than try. Go for it!

  28. Linda S. says

    Yup, I say make 2-3 sets as shown in this post and offer them in your shop. I am a crafty person, but I would still give serious consideration to buying these from you. The deciding factors for me would be: 1) Are those flowers included so that when I unpack my box my purchased project would be completed? and 2) Is the cost of shipping going to be a deal-killer? I’m having a hard time trying to imagine how you would set a price for shipping when obviously there would be quite a bit of your personal time involved, packing materials to be purchased, and then the actual cost of shipping at the PO, FEDEx, or whereever. Good Luck. They really are pretty, and I CAN see busy women ordering them.

  29. Sunshine says

    You could so easily sell these! They are beautiful and jars like this are very popular and timeless. I also think $24 for 4 is a steal!

  30. says

    They are totally adorable; but, no, I wouldn’t buy them from you! We are a very DIY team around here, and I’ve never purchased anything from Etsy. But…….I do know there are plenty of people out there who either have no inclination to do this type thing, or no space/place to do crafts, or no time, so I would think you would for sure have some buyers.

  31. says

    LOVE these!!!…sell them, gift them etc!!!…they are lovely…thx for sharing…going back to look around some more….I feel the need to copy this one!!…I’m a mason jar junkie!!

  32. says

    Beautiful photos Linda! I say go for it, what have you go to lose? List a set, see if it sells. If not, then you have your answer. If so (and I suspect it will) then list a few more and see what happens. I would buy them. If I weren’t such a diyer myself. 😉


  33. says

    Lovely!! I pinned to my “crafty inspirations” board!! I love the muted look. I personally am terrified to really change dramatically any of my vintage pieces, but mason jars are really easily found so it gives me hope to change my attitude!

  34. Diane Smith-Hayward Canada says

    For sure put them in your shop…some people just aren’t crafty or have the time or have money to burn. Love what you did here…so fresh for spring.

  35. says

    I think these are absolutely beautiful! They look like Spring and would brighten up any room! I would definitely try to sell these if I were you! I think that people don’t alway have time to do this themselves and would buy these! I am pinning- these are great:)

  36. says

    I sell on Etsy and sometimes I am surprised at the things people will buy. The picture of your item will sell it. And remember this, sometimes people can make it, but they don’t want to take the time or they don’t have the time, but they love the item and just want to buy the item. So go get ’em girl. I think you will be surprised at how well these will sell. I think they are adorable!

  37. says

    I actually just spray painted some old jars (no distressing) and thought how easy to make something unique and colorful. It’s always worth trying to sell something, so why not?

  38. says

    I think for sure there are people that would be willing to pay for them! They’re beautiful. It’s a great idea what you’ve done and they have a very great look! Thanks for sharing!

  39. Patti-Ann says

    I would buy them! Because you have several colors, several jars, etc,. and it would cost me MORE to buy the supplies than to purchase them. Keep in mind the gas to find the place to get this stuff, the cost of the supplies, the aggravation of trying to do it as well as you do and the time expended in wasted energy because I would just throw it all away and then look for a reasonable online source to purchase them.

    I mean isn’t that the whole purpose for me following your blogs?

  40. Joan Heinrich says

    My suggestion: Test the waters. Don’t make a gazillion of them yet, but put them up on esty. If you get an overwhelming response, you can get busy making more. The worst case scenario: no one will buy them, but you will still have some beautifully painted jars that YOU love! (By the way, your presentation of the jars as shown here is perfect! Fresh, lovely – I’d be very surprised if you didn’t receive a very positive reaction to your esty post!)

  41. says

    love your jars, I have worked in the wedding industry for a few years and I could definitely see brides using these everywhere, so I think they would sell well. maybe you could market these for weddings. Good luck! -Kimberly

  42. says

    Wow Linda – I am such a sucker for painted glass jars – I have loads – all painted on the inside. But now you are gonna set me off on a whole new painting spree!!!

    Seriously – these are gorgeous. Definitely put them in your Etsy store!
    xx Nat
    PS – pinning the heck outta them!

  43. Marty@A Stroll Thru Life says

    I love this idea, how fun and your colors are fantastic. So clever. Thanks for joining Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  44. says

    There are absolutely beautiful! I sent you an email and hope it’s alright that I mentioned your post and linked to you on my blog!

  45. Bridget Weed says

    They are beautiful! And now I’m going to make some for my craftroom. But your followers probably aren’t the best folks to survey because we are all crafters & DIYers. We go to dept stores & see art, pillows, tables, chairs, comforters…And look at the price tag, yelp…and then say “I can MAKE that myself!” Then we do just that. But I’ve found that non-crafty folks gasp in amazement after I’ve done it and no matter how simple I say it was, they won’t even attempt it. Some have no confidence; others, no desire to do it. We can’t imagine paying for something so easy to do yourself, and at a fraction of the cost. But that’s probably who your customers would be. I say GO FOR IT!

  46. Connie Curley says

    Not only do I think you should try selling your painted jars but you should also considering selling your photographs of your painted jars 😉 I think your suggest price is reasonable also.

  47. says

    I think they’re gorgeous! And I love the colors you picked! If I’m being honest….I would tag the pic and save it in my file of things to do and try and probably never get around to it, but still love the look of yours. I do that with everything. If I saw you at a craft show, I would buy them on the spot.

  48. Niki says

    I am extremely curious about what type of scratch and water resistant enamel you used. I would buy them for sure… if I weren’t so crafty and going to try to make them myself! 😉

  49. Summer says

    What kind of acrylic paint did you use? I have been wanting to do this and the only thing I am missing is the type of paint. I definitely want a matte look. Does anyone have any suggestions?

  50. says

    Hi there,
    I think people would buy them, especially at 4 for $24! You’d be surprized! I sell the chalkboard labels in my etsy shop, and even though I had a lady on a blog blast my ad for being “too expensive” and did a whole story on my shop… it had the opposite effect. I actually got a lot of traffic from her blog from people reading the article, and a lot ended up buying the labels from me. I guess they weren’t that bad then huh? I think you did a beautiful job, and they’re a lovely gift. Go for it!

  51. Linda says

    Love them…. will make my own, but a lot of people can’t so yes, you should definitely sell them on your page.

  52. says

    I wanted to let you know an old trick-of-the-trade-faux-finishing-tip: use a little vaseline (or just plain brand petroleum jelly) on the places you don’t want the paint to stick. I see many “distressed” items these days; in shops, flea markets etc. They all have the same malady: they LOOK distressed. Many self-taught crafters only use one type of tool to do their magic. Take it from me, a mostly self-taught crafter!!! I did have one class on faux finishing though…and obviously need another on over-punctuation usage.

      • Crystal says

        These are amazing! Where exactly is the best place to buy the acrylic paint and the final scratch free enamel? I am only seeing spray paint?

        • says

          You can find acrylic paint at any craft store — Michael’s or JoAnn’s or the one that shall not be named because of a recent controversial Supreme Court ruling that I don’t agree with …

          :) Linda

  53. cheryl valentine says


  54. says

    one thing a friend of mine once said to me was “sure you can make this, But will you?”
    i always think of that when i consider to sell something i make and doubt anyone will buy it. and like many of the other comments already posted, some people don’t have the time, talent, or desire to DIY. so yes sell away! they are beautiful! :)

  55. Rahma says

    I think its great that you can buy painted mason jars online. Its not that most people are not crafty, most of us are busy. I saw so many beautiful mason jars on Etsy. I’m willing to buy one to see how it turns out. Mason jars bring a bit of vintage or natural vibe to anywhere you put it. for me I need to decorate my desk.

    • says

      Thank you for your comment! I actually did start selling the painted mason jars at my shop and they are doing very, very well! And lots of custom orders for events and parties! :) Linda

  56. Brenna says

    I wouldn’t buy them. It’s not hard to paint a jar and you can buy a case of mason jars for $10. You did a beautiful job though.

    • says

      Too true, Brenna. But you’d be surprise at how many people do buy them. I’ve listed them at the Etsy shop and have been doing a lively business with them!

      :) Linda

  57. Sam says

    HI! I absolutely love this tutorial, it’s gorgeous! Just wondering, what else can you coat it with other than the enamel to protect it? Thanks! :)

  58. Meagan says

    I’m late to the game, but felt like I should put in my two cents! I would definitely sell them on your site (and im sure you already have!). I just bought some from a girl who makes them locally where I live, simply because I didn’t have the time to do it myself. And I’m sure that’s how a lot of people feel. It’s way easier to hand over some cash than it is to do it yourself. Plus, if you don’t already have all the supplies, it could end up costing around the same. Paint can be expensive! Very cute jars, by the way :)

    • says

      Thank you Meagan! And, yes, I’ve been selling them for awhile now. In fact, in January I painted and distressed 300+ jars to fulfill Etsy shop orders! :) Linda

  59. says

    These are great! I want to make some for my grandmother’s 85th birthday I am planning. Her name is Rose and it’s going to be a vintage theme with lots of roses, (because of her name, get it? lol), burlap and lace. So anyways what I was wondering is what did you use for the top coat (enamel)?

  60. Kathy says

    Mine didn’t work!! Could it possibly be the type of food coloring I used.??? That was the only different thing I used ….otherwise I followed your instructions exactly.!!!
    What do u think …could it be that your food coloring was thicker ? Mine was the little plastic bottles …4 colors in 1 box type.

    • says

      Okay, I must confess that I’m a bit confused when you said food coloring. This comment came through on my post about using acrylic paint on the jars, not food coloring. So if that’s what you were using then it won’t work. Because these jars are painted with matte finish acrylic craft paint …


  61. Christine says

    Linda, the jars are beautiful and I’m sure people will buy them. Your price is very reasonable. I am a crafty person, and would make them, but a lot of people would rather buy them, they are too busy, or not crafty.

    • says

      Thank you Christine! This blog post is actually a few years old now and I’ve been selling mason jars at my Etsy shop and they’ve been doing very well!!! I love your words of encouragement! :)


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