Condo Blues: DIY Solar Snowman Jar Lights

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

DIY Solar Snowman Jar Lights

I need to add new lighting to our outdoor Christmas decorations this year because for some inexplicable reason, our lawn service company felt the need to mow our  lawns in December. They ran over and destroyed my lights with a lawn mower despite the fact we are allowed to have holiday decorations in our yard for Christmas.

Uff da.

My HOA didn’t understand it either.

I’m turning an annoying head scratching negative and turning it into a positive. I’m taking the opportunity to change up our outdoor Christmas decorations a little bit this year by going green and making recycled glass jar solar snowman lights!

 Pin this tutorial for later!

I'm also giving my summer solar yard lights a big green reuse and repurpose by making them into energy efficient outdoor Christmas lights.

You can use glass Mason jars to make this project if you don’t have empty glass food  jars. At the time of this writing all of my spare Mason jars are storing and organizing food in my kitchen cupboards because it stays fresher longer and I can stuff more food in the cupboards than if I keep it in the original packaging.

How to Make Quick and Easy Solar Salsa Jar Snowmen


You will need for this tutorial:

Empty glass jars and lids - I am using salsa jars. We have a serious salsa habit! 

Small garden solar lights

Dremel and cutting wheel

White  multi surface craft paint

Black spray paint

Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks

Rubbing alcohol and cotton balls

Orange multi surface craft paint

Black multi surface craft paint

Small dish


Cotton swabs

Paint brush

Fabric scissors

Fleece fabric scraps

Optional: Manson Jar Hangers and Shepard hooks

Disclosure: I added affiliate links to this post for your convenience.

The Step by Step How to Make It 

1. Wipe the inside of the glass jar with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. This will remove any residue/oil from your hands and allow the paint to adhere to the glass.

2. Pour the white craft paint and water mixture into the glass jar and slowly turn the jar so the craft paint covers the interior of the jar. It is less messy if you pour a very small amount of paint to coat the inside the jar and add a bit more if needed.

 Swish! Swish!

3. Turn the painted jars upside down and allow the excess paint to drip out of the jar while the paint dries overnight.

Allowing the jars to dry on a drop cloth/scrap cardboard/paint catch basin is a fantastic idea unless you like to clean up messes!

4. Use the Dremel and cutting wheel to cut a hole in the metal jar lid for the bottom of the solar light. I found it easier to cut a square hole for my light instead of a round hole but you can do what you like.

Caution: Cut your metal jar lid outside and using low speed to lower the possibility of causing sparks while you cut metal.

5. Spray paint the jar lids with the black spray paint and the top of the solar lights if needed. Allow the spray paint to thoroughly dry.

Remember to cover the solar panel and bottom light area with painter’s tape so you don’t accidentally ruin the solar light! Guess how I know? 

 The hole for the light doesn't have to be cut perfectly. No one will see it after we do Step 6.

Allow the lid and light to dry completely before moving on to Step 6.

6. Put the solar light in the hole in the jar lid. You can  use the hot glue to glue the light into place if you like. I am not gluing my lights into place so I can reattach the light to the stake and use them in the backyard next summer.

Congratulations! You just made Mr. Snowman’s hat. Yay!

 You can also see where I accidentally got black spray paint on the bottom of my solar bulb when I painted the top black because I only put painter's  tape over the solar panel. You can remove the over spray with a cotton ball soaked with rubbing alcohol if needed.

7. Wipe the outside of the glass jar with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. This will remove any residue/oil from your hands and allow the paint to adhere to the glass.

8. Use the cotton swabs and black craft paint to paint the snowman’s eyes and mouth. Use the paint brush and orange craft paint to paint the snowman’s carrot shaped nose and allow the paint to dry.

 I didn't try to make perfect circles with the cotton swab because it looks more like coal paired with the texture I get by using a cotton swab instead of a paint brush for the eyes and mouth.

9. Screw the lid on the snowman jar and allow the solar panel.

Optional:  If you want to hang your solar snowman mason jar from a Shepard's hook, attach the jar hanger to the neck of the mason jar before you screw the lid onto the jar

10. Cut a strip of fabric with the fabric scissors, tie it around the base of the jar to make Mr. Snowman’s scarf and hot glue it into place.

 Let there be light!

11. Light up the night with solar snowman outdoor Christmas d├ęcor!

Optional: Use the Mason jar hanger to hang the solar snow man jar on a Shepard's hook outside.

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