DIY & Turn a Mason Jar into a Lamp with this Craft Tutorial

JAR CRAFTS Published December 21st, 2013 52,455 views
Table Lamp Using a Mason Jar

Add a little light to your bathroom or kitchen with this DIY mason jar table lamp idea! This is an easy & inexpensive jar craft idea, made in 2 minutes.

While walking around in Lowes the other day, bored and looking for a little DIY inspiration, I noticed these lamp shades were on clearance for only $1.50 each (normally $6.94). I couldn’t help myself but to go over and touch one to see if it was made of that flimsy junk or if it was actually a decent little shade. Sure enough, the tiny little lamp shade seemed really durable and then about 10+ of them jumped into my arms. Since then, I’ve made sure to get a basket when I go shopping in there, just in case that kind of thing happens to me again!

Once I got the lamp shades home, they sat on the table for a couple of days as I went back and forth on what exactly I was going to use them for. I toyed with the idea of putting them in a box for another day down the road, but then one night shortly thereafter, I was walking to the kitchen and I suddenly realized how much I disliked that light over the stove. I decided it was time for something more simple, or at least less blinding for those times when I got up in the middle of the night and didn’t want to see the stovetop illuminated in all of its glory… and voila, the little mason jar lamp was born!

Materials Needed to Build

The materials needed are fairly simple and can be found at just about any Dollar Tree, Dollar General, or any other dollar store for that matter. I’ve even seen lamp shades in Dollar Tree, but you can certainly find dozens of them at Lowes or Home Depot if you run into trouble finding them at the dollar outlets.

  • 1 lamp cord with the nightlight bulb on one end and a toggle on/off switch ($1 @ Dollar Tree)
  • 1 lamp shade of your choice ($1 to $4 @ Dollar Tree/Dollar General/Lowes/Home Depot)
  • 1 small bag of seashells, marbles, rocks, or whatever kind of filler you want to use for the inside of the mason jar.
  • 1 nail of just about any size
  • Hammer
  • Pliers
Mason Jar Floor Lamp Light Socket & Cord

The “single clip light” with toggling on/off switch.

If you have a drill and a drill bit, you won’t need the hammer and the nail.

5 Mason Jar Table Lamp Shades

The ‘jumping’ lamp shades.


After you’ve gathered the short and versatile list of materials, your next mission will be to drill or puncture a hole into the mason jar lid. Yes, I’m referring to the inner portion of the lid assembly. The outer portion is simply called the ring. Don’t be afraid to mess up, because it won’t be visible when you are finished, and you are going to need a fairly large and odd-shaped hole in order to fit the light bulb assembly clip down into it. In fact, it’s the perfect DIY if you think about it, because if you make your hole too large, that just means that more light will shine down into the jar and not just up through the lamp shade.


Mason Jar Table Lamp Lid & Materials

Once you get a small hole started, it’s fairly easy and far less work to simply place your pliers into the hole you’ve created, grab hold of a small portion of the lid and bend it backward (making a bigger hole). Work your way around in a “circle” until the hole is large enough to snugly fit the socket clip into it. Just continue to grab and bend little pieces of the lid until you think the light will shove down in there and stay. Yep, that’s the way to do it!

This will probably also be the best time to empty your seashells or whatnot down into the jar.

Mason Jar Table Lamp Light Bulb

By now, you should be finished making the hole in the mason jar lid, and working the lamp cord socket and it’s little clip into that hole (light bulb pointing up). In order to secure the lid once the light bulb socket is in place, you’ll need to attach the ring.

Mason Jar Table Lamp with Light Installed

Now for the most fun part of all– installing the lamp shade! Do you see the two pieces of metal on the lamp shade? That is where the light bulb is going to go up through, and then you’ll continue to work those metal pieces down a bit further and onto the metal clip of the light socket.

Mason Jar Table Lamp Shade Installation over Light Bulb

Once the shade is sitting on the bulb, you’ll have to reach up into the shade and pull those metal pieces apart just a little more, and then let it sit on the flat sides of the light socket clip. Doing so will let you easily adjust the shade, keeping it sitting all nice and even.

Mason Jar Table Lamp Shade Installation over Light Bulb Part 2

Finishing Up

Phew! You didn’t think you could have that much fun while making your own jar lamp, did you? If you’ve made it this far, you are probably the new proud owner of an adorable little mason jar table lamp! Don’t forget to plug it into the wall and turn it on!

Below are some of the other photos taken when trying to get a few decent ones to share with you. Thanks for playing along and learning how to build your very own mason jar table lamp!

Illuminated Mason Jar Table Lamp

Mason Jar Table Lamp in Bathroom as Night Light

Mason Jar Table Lamp in Bathroom as Night Light

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