So it was my sister’s birthday last week and she is one of those free spirited, non-materialistic people who always wants me to make her something or spend time with her instead of buy her a gift. Which is well and good if you have ideas! If your brain is fried and you have to google ‘creative gift ideas’ then sift through thousands of pages, or if it’s suddenly THE DAY and you only realise when you check the use-by date on the milk and the shops are closing in a couple of hours, and you also need a costume for the party and you are so broke that every purchase for the last fortnight has had to go on your very battered-looking credit card, how about this… MAKE A SUN JAR!
Unfortunately, I cannot claim any snaps for creative genius. (In fact I just typed a random letter ‘o’ into the middle of the word ‘genius’ and couldn’t figure out why it looked wrong. I am blaming assignment-and-prac-related stress for this.) I came across the idea as a result of extreme googling (random collection of seemingly unrelated words then ‘I feel lucky’). But it is beautiful and makes a thoughtful, creative gift.
Basically, a sun jar is sunlight in a jar. See diagram below.
- It actually looks nothing like this.
It’s kind of a lamp, and it doesn’t use electricity so it’s very environmentally friendly. Plus it looks amazing at night.
You will need:
– a box of solar garden lights (you can get a box of 10 Gardener’s Choice ones from KMart for only $6)
– a jar (seriously any clear jar. A jam jar would do, or something with an odd shape or one that is old looking)
– some pretty looking glass or resin stones/marbles. I used some clear resin ice block looking things, $7.99/packet at Villa 9.
It’s so easy:
To start with, fill your jar with the pretty stones. Leave some space at the top.
You just need one of the solar lights – you don’t need the stick part that goes into the ground, only the solar panel part with the attached wires and battery. Rip out that cardboard bit so it works.
Put the solar panel at the top of your jar, on the stones, and close the lid.
Test it – when you cover the top of the jar with your hand, or put it in a dark place, it will glow.
If you have some time, put the jar outside in the sun with the lid undone/removed. This will charge it a bit more – but the Gardener’s Choice lights I bought already had charge, so if you don’t have time for this, it’s all good.
When you give the sunjar to someone, just explain that they need to charge the solar panel to make it glow at night. You could even write instructions on a tag, and tie a ribbon around the top.
Do you know any variations of this, or have any other creative gift ideas? Please share if you do!