Looking for a last-minute DIY homemade gift for a loved one? Your search ends here. This project is ridiculously simple and can be made with things already available in most homes. And the best part is that this is such a nice and personalised gift that your giftee will instantly fall in love with it!
I had seen something like this a couple of months back, in one of my late night random browse-till-you-drop sprees. Yesterday, I booked my tickets to go visit my best friend this weekend, and was wracking my head thinking of what to get her, while I came upon the Instructables Home-made Gifts Contest 2015, and Eureka!, this idea materialised in my hands. I must say I am rather pleased with the effort and how the gift turned out.
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Step 1: Gather Your Materials!
Things you need:
1. Mason jar or any glass bottle
2. Glass paint or Acrylic paint (I used Acrylic as it was readily available at home. You don't need fancy ones for this project, I've used the basic 12 colour student quality ones.)
3. Good quality brush (so that there are no stray fibres that are left trapped between the paint and glass.)
4. Painter's tape
5. A pair of scissors
6. A can of sealing paint - gloss/matte as is your preference
7. LED string lights or self adhesive lights
8. Disposable cup (to keep flowers in)
Step 2: Tape Off the Section for Your Photo to Show Through.
Using painter's tape, tape off the section you want your photo peeking through, making a sort of a frame for the photo.
Step 3: Paint the Jar and Decorate It
Start off painting the jar. When you get to the taped area, apply careful strokes covering the taped area such that there is continuity in the paint strokes. Let it dry completely before you apply the second coat. This took me thirty to forty minutes approximately.
Now decorate your jar with stripes, polka dots, hearts, or whatever takes your fancy. I have used polka dots and stripes across two jars (check final photos). Of course, you may skip this step too and leave the jar in one single solid colour too.
Step 4: Seal Off With Transparent Spray Paint
After your jar is completely dry, seal it off with a spray sealant. Leave to dry. I have used the glossy finish, fast dry, variety here.
Step 5: Peel Off the Painter's Tape and Stick in Your Photo.
Peel off the painter's tape. Do not worry about paint that's bled through (if any), we will come to it in just a moment.
Measure your 'window' and print out your favourite photo after re-sizing it to fit this. Double-tape your photo on all sides (as shown in the photo) and stick it from the inside aligning with the window you have created.
Step 6: Clean It Up and Get Ready to Show It Off!
Using nail colour remover, carefully wipe off any excess paint that has bled inside your frame. The sealant wouldn't have gone here and therefore your paint will come off easy-peasy.
Take a step back and admire your handiwork :)
Step 7: Light It Up, Stick Some Flowers In, and Viola!, You're Done!
Add some votive candles or string lights to the jar and your night-light is ready! I have used LED self-adhesive lights with an adapter (you can pick this from the local electrical shop).
I made two of these - the smaller one functions as a night-light only and the bigger one, a photo-luminary-vase. For the bigger jar, I put in a disposable cup inside the jar to hold the water and fresh cut flowers.
Thanks for reading this patiently, and all the best for your own photo-luminary-vase!