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  • Clean jars
  • Oil-based enamel paint in black and orange or yellow
  • Paintbrush
  • Extra-wide masking tape
  • Marker
  • Utility knife
  • Plastic-covered 20-gauge wire
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Small candle (such as the LED candle)


  1. Step 1

    In a well-ventilated area, paint inside of jar orange or yellow until opaque. Apply masking tape to outside. Press out air bubbles. Draw a jack-o'-lantern face in marker on tape (or print out our templates onto adhesive labels). Cut out and peel away features with a utility knife to form a stencil (an adult should do this).

  2. Step 2

    Paint stencil with black paint. When dry, peel off tape.

  3. Step 3

    For a handle, loop the end of wire with pliers. Make a lasso shape that will hug jar. Bend remaining wire over for a handle. Cut wire; make another loop to hook onto ring. Slip ring over jar's mouth; tighten.

Halloween 2004, Volume 2004 Special Issue 2004



Reviews (17)

  • J in Oz 12 Oct, 2012

    I made 30 for our 2009 Halloween party. They came out great. The paint takes a LONG time to dry - about 3 days. I initially checked every few hours to re-distribute paint that pooled in the jar bottoms. I used a good-quality, long-handled soft flat paintbrush to paint looking the jar insides w/ no streaking. I also "primed" the insides of the jar by wiping them with methalated spirits; this helped a lot. For the faces, I just used black acrylic paint and free-handed on the outside. Fabulous!!

  • shearsnip 28 Sep, 2012

    Joanns has self adheasive sheets/roll of thin vinyl (used in cricut machines) and similar adheasive backed paper in their scrapbook area

  • Oregonianmom 26 Sep, 2012

    For those having issues painting the insides of the jar: why not try spray painting the jars with an orange 'outdoor' paint. Then you could even use googly eyes glues to the jar or just use a sharpie and draw on the eyes and mouth. It would have similar results without the issue of streaking paint.

  • ErinAlthaus 15 Nov, 2011

    I thought these were super cute, but when I painted mine, I kept getting streaky lines. I was pretty bummed about it and ended up throwing them away. Wish mine turned out like the picture...

  • AdgeK 26 Sep, 2011

    Hi everyone! I have tried this a few time and never seem to get it right. I always end up with streaks when the paint is dry and it doesn't look nice. Please help! How do you paint the jar so it doesn't leave streaks and it looks good?!

  • lyndsey21 3 Sep, 2011

    I just made these and they are so cute!! I used the new Martha Stewart multi-use craft paints from Michaels that can be used on glass. Just two coats worked great. And for the black faces, I used an Avery adhesive label painted with the same Martha Stewart craft paint in black. After the paint dried on the adhesive label, I just cut out the face shapes I wanted and peeled the backing to stick them on the jar. So easy!! My kids love these and they were so inexpensive and easy to make.

  • dianecorbet 27 Aug, 2010

    use perm enamel paint and glass primer got at michaels worked great also can paint on flower pots and use saucer for top hope this helps people

  • KellySpears 27 Oct, 2008

    jacquelinerenee is saying that she could of cut the face out using black vinyl (a leather like material (fabric) you can get at craft stores, fabric store, etc. You can cut it out using an exacto knife. Then you can glue it onto the jar.

  • Los-creations 20 Oct, 2008

    What is cricut? I too do not want to use oil base paint but something faster. What would you do with the black vinyl?

  • Jacquelinerenee 5 Oct, 2008

    So I tried this craft today, and stencils were fine, but working with oil based paint just wasn't that easy to work with in my opinion, especially since it is taking a long time to dry (over 10 hours so far). I realized I should have just used a cricut or exacto and used black vinyl. Would have been much easier and more clean looking

  • MrPKitty 24 Sep, 2008

    karen, but oil based enamels at Micheals, Hobby Lobby or any art supply store.

  • primamomma 18 Sep, 2008

    I used acrylic paint since I will use an LED votive. That way if I want to re-use the jars, I just wash with soapy water and the paint is gone.

  • ilove_noodles 12 Sep, 2008

    Treasured Heirlooms I wouldn't put a real votive in there, but instead I would use one of those battery operated tea lights.

  • karenhines 12 Sep, 2008

    where do you buy oil based enamel?

  • Leda 6 Sep, 2008

    I think these are way fun we are going to do them at my womens group in a few weeks I found more templates on they had a bunch that you can copy and pst and then resize to what you will need.

    "can you put a votive inside when using oil based enamel?"
    My mom did these last week and put a candle in them and said it was fine

  • TreasuredHeirlooms 28 Aug, 2008

    can you put a votive inside when using oil based enamel?

  • valamary 21 Feb, 2008

    I did several of these for teacher gifts. I didn't have much luck with stencils and templates. I just did faces freehand.