Once a project is done and headed for the pantry, the last step is proper labeling. A label can be as simple as using a Sharpie to write the contents on the lid or a complicated as self-adhesive custom labels. No matter what you decide to use--do make it a point to do something!
I have been experimenting with all sorts of ways to label jars and I find that the brand name self-adhesive labels are pretty easy to print and put onto jar but darn hard to get back off your jars! I find myself reaching for lighter fluid or WD40 to remove the last of the adhesive!
Recently, I have been using a much lower-tech (and less expensive) plain paper label using thinned white glue to decoupage the slip to my jars. It's nearly as fast as self-adhesive labels and soaks off easily and quickly in warm water.
Mix a small amount of white glue with 2 or 3 times the amount of water and keep in a small container. Then, simply print out your choice of labels, let them dry for a few minutes, cut them out and glue them to your jars. I find it works better to put the thin glue on the jar and then put the label on that. Smooth it out and it will last as long as you need it to. You can add glue over the top to give the paper a slight shine that is a little nicer for gift giving.
Tutorial: How to Make your own labels with autofillPDF-Labels 1.0.
Here are some links to useful and pretty pre-made labels:
- Canning Lids Download: A set of 12 cute printables for canning jar lids, pdf download available.
- Alenkas Printables – Labels Templates: Both circular jar toppers and rectangular labels available, type your info right on the graphics and then print.
- Canning Labels & Gift Tags: Another set of labels from HP.com, pdf download (not editable like above–handwrite the info instead).
- Free Country Labels & Canning Jar Labels: A small assortment of country style graphics for preserves and canning jars. Each file is available separately (graphic image download).
- Free Printable Labels: Country style labels, a few quite suitable for canning. There is a full printable sheet per design set.
- Rainbow Row Graphics Canning Labels: These are more for gift giving, some cute stuff to print.
- Decorative Jam Labels: Three different designs of jam labels from Martha Stewart.
- Free Canning Label Template: (newly added) pdf download featuring labels for blueberry jam, strawberry jam, salsa, relish, and blank for you to handwrite your own. Scroll down for the download, pdf is large (96 MB) so give it some time to load.
- Jam Jar Tags & Labels: (newly added) Labels and tags for ten different kinds of jams (strawberry, blueberry, peach, cherry, plum, raspberry, mixed berry, orange marmalade, blackberry and damson).
- Printable Marmalade Canning Labels: (newly added) These sweeties come in three different colors (yellow, green and orange for lemon, lime and orange marmalades). You can either handwrite or use your computer to customize. Available in both jpg and pdf downloads.
- Triple Red Circle Labels: (newly added) Lovely, simple design with a blank center for you to customize as you wish, pdf download.
- DIY Home Made Jam Packaging- Free Labels: (newly added) There are six different sets available to download (pdf): cherry jam, rhubarb jam, strawberry jam, blueberry jam, apricot jam, marmalade. Each set contains labels and tags (homemade with love).
- Simply Brilliant Canning Labels: (newly added) Instead of sticker labels, how about removable cardstock labels (to fit inside both sides of lid). Two downloads available to get you started (.doc files).
- Labels in Windows Doc Files(instead of PDF).
- Eat Drink Chic: These gift-worthy, jam-focused labels come in sets (cherry, blueberry, rhubarb, etc.) that also include an extra heart-shaped label that says "homemade" and a little tag that says "homemade with love."
- Printable Rustic Jar Tags: These are very cute with circles of fabric.
- Check out Google Images for hundreds of ideas on fancy labeling!
- Wine Tags, Labels and Bag Pattern from HP.
- Nifty Freezer Labels: These are a great idea from Martha. Also Spice Jar Labels.