DIY Beach Jar Vacation Souvenir

       We just got home from a family beach vacation.

Montauk Point vacation NY

Before we left I found a great summer DIY project on Pinterest using sand and shells in jars. If you don't already follow Homeroad on Pinterest please do, I have over 2 million monthly visitors and I pin a lot of great projects!

This was the best idea ever for a family project and makes a great take home souvenir for kids and grown-ups alike. I love the ones made by homewardFOUND

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I started with a few clean jelly jars, a few lengths of cotton string and a card stock tag with the vacation destination and year. 

DIY Beach Jar Vacation Souvenir

The idea is to have the jars ready to go and fill them with all kinds of beach finds from your vacation including shells, sand, rocks, and treasures.

I brought along one jar for each family that went with us. 

DIY Beach in a Jar Vacation Souvenir

After we were there a few days we dumped out all of our beach treasures and filled the jars. 

Assembling a DIY Beach in a Jar Vacation Souvenir

Each person found many things that were memorable especially to them. 

Making a DIY Beach in a Jar Vacation Souvenir

We used a long stick to arrange the treasures in the jar. 

Making a Beach in a Jar Vacation Souvenir

The jars were assembled in no time and could be added to throughout the vacation. 

Making a Beach in a Jar Family Vacation Souvenir

You can even insert a photo from the vacation along with the many treasures. 

The sad truth about our beach vacation is that we found it necessary to pick up trash off the beach while we hunted for treasures. 😤

It was sad to see how much garbage people left on the beach and how much washed up each day.

Plastic straws, balloons, and plastic bags are a big problem!

We are calling this one "garbage in a jar" and it made us very sad. 😥

Garbage in a Jar from the beach

Someone on the beach even thanked us for picking up garbage, no thanks necessary, we felt compelled to do it.

If everyone would pick up a few pieces of trash each time they visited the beach, our world would be a cleaner place. 


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I am Susan, the author and creator at Homeroad. I am a wife of 28 years, the mother of 4 daughters, and the grandmother of 4 grandsons. I am a DIY Blogger and a part time PreK teacher.


  1. OMG . . . I love this project! I live on the coast of Maine and would love to include sea glass in the jars as well. They'd make perfect souvenirs, as you said, or even gifts to someone who loves the area. Thanks for sharing, Cheryl

    1. Yes they do Cheryl! I love the coast of Maine... we visit up there sometimes and it's beautiful near the NH border.

  2. Super fun idea and great one for kids. We are finishing up our beach vacation right now so this is a great place to store all the shells they are bringing back.

    1. Yes ! The kids would love it! Even the grown-ups were excited to find unusual things to save in the jar!

  3. When kids were little, we'd go to the beach in the early spring (bringing hot soup and cocoa in thermoses!), pick up trash and bottles (5 cent returnables, and a few ocean treasures before the tourists found them. If everyone did a bit, the beach would be clean, birds and fish wouldn't die being trapped in plastic things, and it would be a more beautiful world. We live near the coast of Maine; it's where I go to get centered! I make clear glass Christmas balls with "store bought" stuff and always add a few Maine shells and a bit of sand; its like shaking a snow globe; addicting.

    1. That sounds wonderful! I love Maine and the shell ornaments sound beautiful!

  4. Love this idea, Susan! I've done it over the years with my kids as our one big family vacation each year is to the jersey shore. We have an ongoing challenge to see who can collect the most sea glass:) xo Kathleen

  5. Thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm! Pinned! xo Kathleen


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