Make a Spooky Jack-in-the-Box in a Mason Jar

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Make a Boo Jar–a spooky jack-in-the-box in a mason jar instead of a box that will give anyone a fright!

Halloween mason jars

October is here and everyone is talking about Halloween! I’ve been seeing so many cute Halloween crafts and delicious Halloween desserts online. When were are running errands, the small talk, especially the small talk directed towards my kids, is all about Halloween. I wanted to make a mason jar for Halloween and came up with this Boo Jar.

Things you’ll need:

  • Small Mason Jars
  • Water
  • Vinegar
  • Small Spray Bottle
  • Metallic Spray Paint – Chrome
  • Black Spray Paint
  • Paper Towels
  • Newspaper
  • Heavy Duty Glue (such as polyurethane glue)
  • Small Plastic or Rubber Figurines
  • Utility Compression Springs

Faux mercury glass supplies

Start by painting the mason jar. I decided to go with a faux mercury glass look. Mix together 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon vinegar in a small spray bottle. Spread newspaper over your work area to protect it.

Spray water on mason jars

Lightly spray the mason jar with the water and vinegar mixture.

Spray paint on mason jar

While the liquid is still beaded on the glass, spray paint it with a couple of light coats of the metallic spray paint.

Dry the mason jar

Allow the paint to dry for 2-3 minutes and then use a paper towel to wipe off areas where the water beaded on the jar. You can do a small test area on the bottom to see if it is ready.

Faux mercury glass

I love how it looks, but it needed to be more opaque.

Black spray paint

So, I painted the inside of the jar with black spray paint.

Mason jar lids

For the lids, I started by painting them black. I let the black paint dry and then followed up with the water/vinegar spray and the metallic spray paint. Allow it to dry for 2-3 minutes and then wipe with a paper towel to give them a uniform look.

Boo jar supplies

Glue a spring to the bottom of the mason jar. I used a polyurethane glue. I bought the utility compression springs at my local hardware store. They are long and more loosely wound than the other choices. You don’t want the springs to be too tightly wound or there will be too much force on the lid and someone could get hurt. The package says the springs I purchased measure 23/32 x 3-1/2 x .041. Larger hardware stores might have springs that are even more loosely wound than these ones and that would be perfect!

Glue spring in jar

Allow the glue to dry following the instructions on the glue bottle.

Halloween mason jar

Glue a couple of squares of cheesecloth and a small figurine or soft plastic toy on the top of the spring.

Halloween boo jars

I made two Halloween boo jars. One of them has a ghost that I took off of a small candy dispenser. The second jar has the fake plastic finger that I found in the Halloween section of a discount store. To use the jars, push the small figurine down, screw on the lid and give it to someone to open. When they open the jar, the ghost or fake finger will pop up and surprise them!

Photo Credits: Tonia Larson

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