Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Mini jars

A couple of weeks ago someone in one of my miniature groups showed a set of tiny glass jars filled with glitter, from The Works (a hobby chain in the UK). I have been hunting these jars forever, but I won't pay a fortune for them on ebay. I happened to be near The Works last week, and bought a set for £1.


I want the jars, not glitter, but the first rule of miniature making is never throw away anything, so I started thinking where I can keep the glitter, and just some days later I happened to be in another hobby shop and bought this very useful mini storage box.


At the moment I cannot think of any use for glitter, because I don't do glitter-themed environments, but who knows. If it had been red it would have been useful to make fire.

Anyway, this left me with eight empty jars that I wanted to fill with something interesting for my larder. I have some jars made from plastic bottle caps, filled with salt, couscous, seeds and stuff. But jars invited preserves.

I posted in my miniature group, and the responses puzzled me. Friend after friend said: Candles. Ignorant as I am, I couldn't see any connections between glass jars and candles, but apparently there is something called Yankee candles, and if you make a candle shop, glass jars is exactly what you need.  Always something new to learn from miniature-making.

However, I wasn't making a candle shop, and a Victorian house would probably not have Yankee candles, and what I wanted was preserves or pickles. So this is what I made:

Left to right:

Coriander seed.
White pepper.
Snowdrop fruit (will probably dry up).
Air-drying clay, painted.
Eucalyptus seeds.
Unidentified seeds I had before.
Green lentils.

Apart from clay gherkins and snowdrop seeds that maybe also look like cucumbers or green peppers, I am not sure exactly what the things are supposed to represent. I may add glue to yellow lentils and pretend it's orange marmalade. White pepper may be green tomatoes? I will probably paint eucalyptus seeds dark red for beets. In fact, I had these fake beets before, but I made a big mistake. Of course there must be liquid in preserves if they are to look natural, and one of these days I will get scenic water to add features to my kitchens and bathrooms. But at the moment I haven't got scenic water, so I thought: what could I use instead? Antibacterial gel maybe? Bad idea. It all got murky within a day. So for the time being there is no liquid. There is room for improvement.

By the way, painting cucumbers was harder than you think. I tried and tried and tried and never got the right shade of green.

Here are the jars on their shelves:

Actually, you cannot see them well. I will have to re-arrange the shelves for better display.


  1. While the Yankee candles fill the whole jar with wax, I make the jars into hurricane lanterns. I drop a thick pillar candle inside. Looks nice on a table

  2. What a great idea to paint the white pepper etc; I must try that. I had forgotten how cute the little mouse trap, with the cheese, is in the bottom right hand corner. Did you make it?