Sprucing up my porch is a yearly effort. Florida weather can be rough on anything
exposed to the elements. With an open porch and freestanding canopy, each season
calls for a fresh look. My free-flowing creation mason jar light is now a welcome
sight with my morning coffee and the birds.
Collecting mason jars is a secret hobby and I thought the perfect start to my outdoor lights.
I was born with crazy creative ideas, and I generally just make it up as I go along. I looked
at the space I wanted to fill and just worked out from there. I wanted to add light to the
canopy and a focal point in the open space above the seating area.
I used several sizes of mason jars to give the chandelier depth and I knew that I wanted a
natural outdoor feel that could be changed with the seasons. I used twine wire to create
a ring to use as the base to hang the jars from and to hang on the hook from the
top of the canopy. It is medium wire covered in brown raffia/twine.
Next, I wrapped wire around the lip of each jar and created a loop to attach the twine
wire to the jar. I wanted the mason jars to hang in a scattered way, not organized or even.
Each jar had a different length of twine wire, so they hung with a jumbled look.
I took pine cones from the yard and added wire to them and hung them at different lengths also.
After hanging the jars, about 10 of them, from the ring in the top of the canopy,
I then filled them with lights. I took several strands of white lights and
put them inside each of the jars.
Now for decoration. I love burlap because it can look messy and elegant at the
same time. I thought it would be perfect for this project because it would hold up longer in
the summer weather. I made three wide bows with the burlap and wired them onto the twine
wire ring. Then I cut eight strips of burlap to hang from the bows. I wired them to the twine wire.
I wanted the effect to be seen from all sides. That is why I did three bows. They met each other
on all sides to fill in space at the top.
The strips of burlap gave the chandelier instant dimension. It also filled in the gaps of the mason jars and made it more of a silhouette. The effect of the burlap gives the chandelier a larger feel to fill the space.
I made the original chandelier last fall and filled in around the jars with fall garland.
It had pumpkins, leaves, and gourds. I decorated the top of the bows with branches from
a magnolia tree. When it lights up at night it is the perfect amount of light to visit by.
In the spring, I fashioned the chandelier with cherry blossoms. The white and pink hues are
a perfect pick me up to my early morning coffee with the birds. Speaking of birds, you may
notice straggling pieces of burlap hanging on the strips. Well, the neighborhood wrens have
discovered that this is the perfect nesting material! I keep finding strings of burlap everywhere.
One family of wrens moved into one of the bows in January, but I had to chase them off!
There was not enough support for them to build a nest,
and I wanted to avert disaster.
My space is open to the elements and is always open to welcome friends
for coffee and banana bread. It is not decorated or fancy, that is not how I live in this
season of life. It is backyard living with the rain, chickens,
dogs and muddy boys, just how I like it.
I love mason jar crafting, do you? I would love to hear your outdoor ideas for
gathering with family, friends, and the birds!
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