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DIY-MASON JAR CHANDELIER | Kara Paslay Design

DIY-MASON JAR CHANDELIER

DIY-MASON JAR CHANDELIER
The highly anticipated DIY Mason Jar Chandelier Tutorial is ready to make its debut.
Before I get started, I must make a DISCLAIMER: We are not electricians and cannot assume responsibility if you burn your house down trying to follow these instructions!!!! If at any point you feel uncomfortable, hire an electrician!!!!!!
There are a lot a steps involved but I will do my best to explain things in terms everyone can understand. So, here goes. . .
First gather all your materials. You will need:
– Canning Jars with lids (6 large, 9 widemouth, 6 small)
-Wire (18-2 Lamp Cord)
-#10 Washers
– Hex Nuts (that will fit your nipple (which is the threaded metal rod))
– Steel Nipples
– Small Hose Clamp
– 4 Keyless Sockets
– 4 in offset crossbar
– 4 in PVC cap (found in plumbing section. We used this as the ceiling plate because it provides a lot of room to accommodate all the wires that are coming from the fixture.
-3 in machine screws (to attach the ceiling plate to the crossbar)
-2 wire nuts
Step 1- Drill one hole in the lids of your canning jars.
Step 2- Choose 4 (2 large and 2 small) canning lids to drill multiple holes in. These lids will hold the lights and need extra holes to release heat. The center hole must be big enough for the nipple to fit through.
Step 3- Cut 21 lengths of wire at 2 feet each.
Step 4- Use wire strippers and/or a razor blade to split the plastic coating and reveal the metal wire underneath.
Step 5- Push the wire through the hole in your lid.
Step 6- String a washer onto one wire and then twist the two together to secure it.
Step 7- Now it’s time to work on the lids that will hold the lights. First we have to cut our nipples down to about an inch. You may be able to buy these smaller, but I was not able to find any.
Step 8- Screw your hex nut onto your nipple.
Step 9- Push the nipple through the hole in your lid. And then screw on the Keyless Socket. Tighten everything together.
The keyless socket looks like this (below) when you open it. Just remove the cardboard wrap to reveal the body of the socket. DO NOT THROW THE CARDBOARD AWAY!!
Step 10-Push wire through the nipple and separate wires onto each side of the keyless socket. Feel the outside of the wires. The one with the ridges should go to the silver screw and the one that is smooth should go to the brass screw.
Step 11- Loosen the screws and wrap wire underneath them. Then tighten them back down.
Step 12- Replace cardboard wrap.
Step 13- Drill a hole through the middle of your PVC cap and spray paint desired color. If the cap is too deep for your liking, you can cut it down. We took off about an inch.
Step 14-Screw all your jars to your lids. Gather the wires together raising and lowering different ones to get the shape you want. It is good to have a husband or friend nearby to help with this stage because the jars can get heavy.
Step 15- Once you have the shape you want, push all the wire through the PVC cap/ceiling plate and then through your hose clamp. TIGHTEN YOUR HOSE CLAMP AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE! It will be holding all the weight of the jars.
Step 16- Cut all the wires back that are not connected to the keyless sockets (see above). It is best to tag these wires from the very beginning so you don’t cut something you shouldn’t.
Step 17- Cut back the plastic coating from the 4 useable wires. Then twist all the neutral wires together with all the hot wires. HOT WIRES=Smooth plastic coating NEUTRAL WIRES= ridged plastic coating
Step 18- Create a “pig tail” from a small piece of wire.
Step 19- Attach one side of pigtail (using same rules from above) to the other wires and use wire nuts to tighten and secure the wires together.
Step 20- Last, drill holes in the PVC cap/ceiling plate that correspond to the crossbar and use 3 in machine screws to hang. And obviously wire the unused “pigtail end” to the wires in your ceiling. (wires in ceiling BLACK=hot WHITE=neutral)
Step 21- Step back and admire your creation!!!!
PS- Tim and I recommend that you use four 25 watt light bulbs spread throughout the chandelier to keep things from overheating.
I would love to see pictures if anyone decides to try this out in their space!!!! A big thanks to Marian, Kristen, and Yanet for purchasing a chandelier to make this DIY tutorial possible!

This article has 98 comments

  1. Anonymous

    Thank you so much! I absolutely LOVE it! Kitchen remodel starts next month and hope to incorporate this into the design.

    Jen

  2. EvaBabeDesigns

    Nicely done! Thanks for the step by step instructions. I hardly ever have time to document my steps and later wish I had so I could share it with others.

  3. Yanet

    Just looking at the supplies list intimidates me. Soooo glad AND thankful I was able to buy one from you!! Thank you, Kara. Can’t wait to put it up. I’ll e-mail you pics when I do.

  4. Anonymous

    I saw this fixture on Design*Sponge and immediately wanted to create one – thanks for sharing the how-to!

    nicole

  5. Shawn Ames

    Wow! This is a great article and it seems like a very, very cool and creative concept to apply to the home. However, TTTT…would you really WANT Mason Jars for your chandelier?

  6. Kara Paslay

    Hey Shawn,
    I definitely understand that this chandelier is not everyone’s style. But I (and quite a few of my readers) really do like the mason jars as a chandelier and wouldn’t want anything else. 🙂

  7. Anonymous

    Kara – Thanks again for the info. Just a couple of questions – I wanted to make one for my kitchen, so it would need to be smaller. Do you think I could for go the Large jars, and just use the wide mouths and smalls? Do standard bulbs fit in the widemouth jars? Do the get too hot? Also, I need a lower profile base than the PVC cap so I would have to cut it WAY down… Is that what you did in your original chandelier, or did you use something else?
    Thanks!
    Jen

  8. Kara Paslay

    Hey Jen,
    The jar selection is totally up to you, you could use any combination you like. I haven’t had any success fitting standard bulbs in the large mouth jars. I have only used 20 or 40 watt fan/candelabra bulbs. For the original chandelier I stole a base from an old fixture that I had. It does have a lower profile, but it was quite a feat to hang. You could certainly check out garage sales or your local habitat for humanity restore for a lower profile option, just be prepared to do a little more work hanging it.

  9. Anonymous

    Is the hose clamp stong enough to hold the weight of the jars? I’m imagining the wires in the center of the bunch slipping out and jars breaking on my kitchen floor.

  10. Kara Paslay

    Hello Anonymous! Well we have had the chandelier hanging in our dining room for months now and everything is still in place. We tightened the hose clamp as much as possible and then did a “tug test” before we hung the light up. We are very confident it is there for the long haul.

  11. Teresa

    Thought I would let you know that RetroRenovation.com was looking for a “how too” for a mason jar chandelier. I shared your post since I thought it was great. Thank you for sharing!

  12. kewpiedoll99

    Hi Kara,

    I have a question about step 17 (Step 17- Cut back the plastic coating from the 4 useable wires. Then twist all the neutral wires together with all the hot wires.) It looks from the picture like you end up with two sets of twisted-together wires, but it sounds like you mean twist ALL the wires together. I’m confused about this. Do you mean, “twist all the neutral wires together and all the hot wires together” or something else?

    Awesome tutorial. Thanks so much for posting!

    Barclay
    http://blog.babablacksheepyarns.com
    http://babablacksheepyarns.etsy.com

  13. Kara Paslay

    Hey Barclay!

    Yes, sorry for the confusion. You twist all the neutral wires together and then you twist all the hot wires together. So in the end you have two clumps of twisted wires. 🙂 I would love to se yours when you finish!!

  14. Gaby

    Let me start off by saying I love how this chandelier looks!

    I want to do something similar for my dining room, but instead of mason jars I want to use wine glasses and champagne glasses. For the glasses that will house the lights I plan on using the stemless variety of wine glasses. But I have a few questions I was hoping you could answer for me.

    1. Our dining room has a dimmer, do you know if the setup you used can work with a dimmer? My boyfriend says it should work, but I don’t want to go through all the trouble of making the chandelier and not have it work in the end.

    2. To hang the wine glasses I plan on using fishing wire to tie around the stems and use the setup you recommended with the electrical wire for the stemless light bearing glasses. But since there will be tons of basically see through fishing wire and then 3-4 clearly visible lines of electrical wire, what would you suggest so that the electrical wire is somewhat hidden and bunched together?

    Thanks in advance!

  15. e.jane

    Awesome project! And a great introduction to playing with electricity!

    I’d love to make one and put it up in my living room, but the house isn’t wired to put it where I want. Can I make this, hang it from the ceiling, and run a long extension cord down the wall to a regular socket? Can I just cut the female end of the extension cord off, strip the wires, and connect them to the fixture?

    Thanks!

  16. airnean

    Hi I absolutely love this. I am a 20 year old design student and am starting up a tiny business. I would love make and to sell this and of course give you credit for the design- would you mind?

  17. L

    We just made this for our home! Thank you for posting such amazing DIY details. Made it a SNAP for us to create for our dining room! You should be able to see the photo at the link posted above.

  18. Maggy

    I LOVE THIS CHANDELIER!!!!! this is the best ever!!!! I so wanted taht kind of light and , was really expensive or not exactly what I was looking for!
    I am remodeling a room, and defently doing this chandelier!!!( at least try 🙂

    Love your blog, I found it through under the sycamore, and you do a great job!!

    mag

  19. shanna

    is there a printer friendly version? I can not get my printer/comp to print with any of the step by step pics to help me along.

  20. L

    A hint: When we were hanging the chandelier with our arms above our heads and lots of glass jars… I found myself thinking “I wish this weighed less!” then an immediate “duh” came to mind and my engineering husband was mad he didn’t think of it first:

    Unscrew the jars (and remove light bulbs so they don’t break) after you have figured out how you want them situated and then just mount the light fixture… without having to hold the jars above your head! (Do an adequate “tug” test, of course, to make sure it won’t come falling down when you reattach the jars). THEN attach the bulbs, jars and enjoy!

  21. Anonymous

    Is it possible to electrify more of the jars (i.e. more bulbs)? Or is this not recommended?

  22. Kara Paslay

    You can electrify more bulbs, just use a very low wattage. The thing that keeps the fixture from getting to hot is all the air and jars in between the bulbs when there are only four lights. If you had more lights the fixture could overheat. I am not sure how many light bulbs to recommend, but I would think you would be fine with 6-7. Hope that helps!

  23. Cara!

    Kara,

    I’m getting ready to embark on this much anticipated project of creating one of these for a wedding present, I’m looking forward to it!

    Quick question, where would you suggest to acquire all the mason jars at a reasonable price? I know they’re cheap online, but I can only find them in bulk.

    Thanks!
    Cara

  24. Kara Paslay

    Hey Cara,

    Yay! I hope the recipients love the chandelier! 🙂 I have found the best place to get mason jars for cheap is garage sales! You can also try flea markets and craigslist.

  25. jakki

    Took a bit of shopping to get all the supplies! I spray painted some of the lids black and used a few different pieces for the ceiling part. It is up and so amazing!!!!!!!!!!! I love it.
    thanks so much kara. your directions were perfect!

    jakki

  26. Kara Paslay

    Jessi – I am so glad you enjoyed creating your light, it looks great in your space!

    Jakki – I would love to see pictures of the modifications you made! The base is my least favorite part. Let me know what you came up with.

  27. Elizabeth

    I freaking love this! I want one soooo bad. The light fixture in our kitchen is hideous, and this would be awesome. I don’t know if I’m up for making one…maybe someday. It is awesome! You blow my mind with how talented and creative you are! Do you know about how much the whole project cost?

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