There are plenty of variations you can make to personalize these favors. Read through the entire project before you start. Then you can add or subtract any supplies from the list before you go shopping. This version is a total do it yourself version (except for store bought candies). This project is highly personal and customizable, but can be very time consuming if you choose the entirely do it yourself options. Consider enlisting some help, making just one element of the favor at a time, or doing the favors in batches.
You will need:
- baby food jars, “stage 2”- these are the jars that are about 4 ounces. The lip on these jars makes for a flush and clean looking finished project. You can also buy jars with the lip. If you don’t have a friend or family member with a baby who is at “stage 2”, you can post on your local Craigslist, Freecycle or any other local forum you frequent to ask someone to save them for you! They should of course be cleaned and have the labels removed. The labels can be tricky so try soaking them before you try to remove them.
- thank you stickers or other personalized stickers. Squares work better than label sized but either will do.
- jewelry wire or floral wire
- jewelry crimpers (or needle nosed pliers)
- ¾ inch ribbon for the rims of the jars. (beaded or decorative is a nice touch)
- 2 colors of tulle (you can use just one color or even 3 or 4 colors.) You only need the rolls that are about 6 inches wide. The bigger rolls just add more cutting!
- round beads, 2 sizes (use 6 mm and 4 mm)
- hot glue gun and glue sticks
- thin satin ribbon
Step By Step
Included are some convenient, time saving variations for the bride who wants a little less work with the same do it yourself feel.
Step 1: Starting the jars
You need to remove the labels and the sticky residue they leave. Soaking them before trying to remove the labels seems to be the best method. You need clean, dry jars. Hold the ribbon taught around the rim of the jar so it just touches and cut that length. This is the one part you should do individually for each jar because of manufacturing differences. Cutting the ribbon in advance based on one sample piece sometimes leaves you with pieces that are too short or long by just a little. Hot glue the ribbon to the top of the jar. Place the sticker (that says thank you, or your names and wedding date or whatever you’d like!) centered on the jar (on the side). Set the jars aside.
Step 2: Making the charms
You can skip this step and purchase pre-made charms from your local craft store. You can vary this method to make a variety of charms and even letters.
You will need to experiment with a length of wire that works for your beads and the size charm you want before you make templates.
Once you have a size that works for you with minimal waste you can cut a bunch in advance. Put a loop at the end of the wire to hold the beads onto the wire (or just bend the wire in a “c” shape and finish each charm right away. String one of the smaller beads, then eight of the larger, 2 smaller, then 8 more of the larger.
Fashion the wire partially into a heart before tightening the beading and closing the loop. You can also loop the beads into a circle with one sparkly center bead to look like an engagement ring.
Make sure you crimp down the wire where you joined it to prevent beads from falling off your decorations and to ensure there are no exposed sharp edges of wire.
Step 3: The bows
Once again you can buy these pre made at your local craft store to save some time and experimenting.
This part is simple. Cut about a foot long piece of tulle. You can make yours larger or smaller depending on the type of bow you are making and the size you want. You can also make your bows multiple colors if you are crafty. The fastest method seems to be to make “bunny ears” from the tulle and double knot them into a bow. Fluff the sides and trim the length if necessary. Attach your charms to the center of the bows using a small piece of jewelry wire (or hot glue). You can also tie the charm right into the bow if you left your loop of wire in the center. The assembled bows can then be hot glued to the ribbon on the jars slightly off to the side of the stickers. You can also tie them opposite or directly over the sticker, whatever you like best.
Step 4: The candy pouch
They also sell pre-made tulle pouches with draw strings.
Overlap 3 pieces of tulle like an asterisk. Fill a jar ¾ of the way with your candy and carefully pour the candy onto the center of the tulle where all 3 pieces overlap. Carefully gather up the tulle and twist it around the candy to make a bag. You can use another small piece of tulle to tie the pouch closed or some thin satin ribbon. Place the bag in the baby food jars. You may have to wiggle it a bit to get it through the opening. Fluff up the ends of the tulle that are sticking out of the jar and you are finished!
This is a great way to recycle baby food jars. These would also make wonderful baby shower favors. Go the complete do it yourself route or buy some or all of the elements pre-made to save some time and effort and still get that do it yourself look and feel.