Ball Jar Pendant Light; {DIY Pendant Light}

Mason Jar Light
When we moved into our new house, we started to look for inexpensive solutions to add “our” character to the house.  The kitchen was one of the first places we wanted to work on. Above the kitchen counter were 3 pendant lights that didn’t quite fit our style.  We decided that those pendants had to go!  But now we needed something more “us” to replace them!  If you find yourself looking for pendant light inspiration, let me point you in the right direction!  Take a look at this custom DIY Pendant Light and Custom Shade that Jess from East Coast Creative used in her kitchen!  Or how about this unique DIY Cage Pendant Light made by Heather over at Whipperberry!
We decided that we wanted to keep the light fixture, but definitely wanted to try something different for the shades.  Jacque decided that she wanted to use recycled ball jars in place of the existing glass shades.  It didn’t take much convincing for me to jump on board.  I loved the idea and thought that jars would make the kitchen really inviting.  So, off we went to the Dutch Valley Antique Mall, where we had seen nice collections of jars and lids. For around $20, we had all the materials we needed!
Mason Jar Light
We had all the pieces to the puzzle, but before we could put it together, we needed to modify the lid to accommodate for the light socket base.  To do this, first, we took a hammer and broke apart the glass from the inner side of the lid.  With the glass out of the way we marked the center of the lid and drilled a pilot hole through it.   Next, we placed the tip of a step drill bit into the pilot hole and bored through the lid until we had created an opening that was large enough to pass the lamp socket through.  Since we used an enclosed ball jar, we needed to come up with a way to allow the heat from the bulb to dissipate, so we marked and drilled small “vent” holes around the outer edge of the lid.
Next, we secured the light socket to the lid using the existing screw on collar from the original pendant shade.  It screws onto the lamp socket housing and holds the lid tightly in place.  To finish off the fixture, screw in light bulb into the socket and then screw the lid onto the ball jar base.
Mason Jar Light
And after a total of about 20 minutes of work, here’s the end result!
Cool Jar Pendant Lights
Mason Jar Light
Mason Jar Light
Mason Jar Light
This project proved to be an inexpensive success!  With the addition of the ball jar pendant lights, our kitchen finally feels like home!
If you’ve got any questions on how we made the pendant lights, feel free to email us or leave a comment
We’d love to hear what you think!
Tater Tots & Jello Most Amazing Projects of 2012
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  1. says

    These lights are fabulous! What a GREAT idea! I've been gushing over all of these projects that involve mason jars. I think they bring a true, down-to-earth element to any room. Thank you for popping over at my blog earlier today! It was quite sweet of you to do so.

  2. says

    That is stinkin' cool! Love those jars! I have just a plain bulb literally hanging in my pantry – this may be the perfect place to try this little idea! Thanks so much for sharing – please come back this week to link up again!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  3. says

    I love those lights! I recently bought some Blue Ball jars which I did a post about on my Flea Market Junky blog. The hue of color looks great with the light turned on. Very brilliant idea!

    • Betty Jo Gard says

      What a cool way to utilize these wonderful old jars!I’ve used my old 1/2 gallon jars to make a couple of lamps. I filled the jars with seashells, used lids that were prewired for bulbs and antique shades and I think that they are really nice! I also use most of my old pints, 1/2 pints and quart jars to store dried cranberries, nuts, etc. They look very nice on my countertops.

      • Matt says

        Betty Jo, those sound like great ideas! We are planning on revisiting the ball jars for projects later on! We love the way they look!

  4. Kim D. says

    Great idea….I’m going to try this. I’d be willing to bet that this will take me much longer! I’m a novice…but I try!!!

    • Matt says

      Kim, we’d love to see your lights when your done! Please make sure to email us with some pics! Thanks for stopping in!

    • Matt says

      Thanks Kelly, we love them too! They diffuse the light really nicely & they add some needed character to the kitchen!

  5. Kathy says

    So those little holes are enough to diffuse the heat from the lightbulb? I want to make some but would hate to burst the jar. You have had them awhile now, so just wanted to see…

    • Matt says

      Kathy, the small holes are more then sufficient for “venting” the heat from the bulb. We’ve had ours up for over a year and a half now and haven’t had any problems at all!

      • Kathy says

        What watt bulb do you use and what size jars? I bought some 60 watt Edison bulbs but will likely need to find some large mouth jars or cut the bottom out for ventilation. I just wonder if 60 watt will get too hot though.

  6. cjbates says

    love your site. love these jars (i’ve always thought things like this were possible lol)and can’t wait to see the pantry makeover. i hate wasted space and wasted stuff so i come up with lots of ideas, yet i’m just not very crafty (i can’t even make a simple scoop out of a plastic milk jug without seeing it done first) even if it’s originally my idea!! great to see it is possible to do these things. keep up the great stuff!!

    p.s. please tell me how you get your husband to be so helpful.

  7. Kristin LaFontaine says

    Thanks for your great tutorial! We have existing ugly pendants that I want to replace with mason jars. I keep running into the same conundrum where I’m not quite sure how to attach the lid securely with the socket(?) piece that the lightbulb screws into. I believe in other tutorials they have some kind of existing rubber ring or something that secures the mason jar lid to the light socket. Does that even make sense? I was wondering what you used – or if it was already a part of your existing lights. Any tips or suggestions are welcome. Thank you!!

    • Matt says

      Hey Kristin! Yep, we know exactly what you’re talking about. The pendant light conversion kits we used, came with a “collar” that secured the socket to the ball jar lid. How do your existing pendants secure to the socket? We’ll help figure this out!

  8. Dawn says

    I want to do this on my ceiling fan in the kitchen…….but I’m so worried about the heat from the bulb with the glass being closed at the end. I have two huge mason jar lights (that I bought and are reproduction) hanging over my kitchen sink. They are open on the bottom so no problems with the heat. Changing the shades on my ceiling fan to these jars would tie everything in perfectly!!


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