Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Preserving Food ~ Canning Labels!

Last week I was so frustrated by my pantry collapse that I had decided I wasn't going to can anymore for the year. That lasted for about two days... or until I got two boxes of apples from the market. And then bruised peaches for free, and then corn. Sigh. It really is part of the pioneer in me to put up food when it is abundant and put by as much as possible. I just can't refuse amazingly good, organic food.

So this week was dedicated to peaches, and then corn, and now applesauce. But it was also dedicated to falling in love with my pantry again. To being in love with the process of putting food by and stepping back just enough so that I could see the beauty in my pantry that everyone else saw.

This led me to look for pretty labels for the tops of my jars:

Inspired by Bitter Betty and her wonderful canning labels (which are on all of my green beans) I set out to make my own. The process turned out to be MUCH easier than I thought it was. Although to figure that out, took about 3 hours, a Word savvy best friend, and a very patient husband. ;)

Wide Mouth Jar Labels

What you need:

Microsoft Word
good photos of the food you are labeling
Full sheet shipping labels (can be found at any office supply store)
a good printer
2.5inch hole punch

I have made up a tutorial in pictures, and because it has quite a few pictures showing how I did this, I decided to make it a Flickr set with instructions:

It is a simple process, and once you get the hang of it, it becomes quite addictive. All my jars have pretty labels now... even the ones for the applesauce currently simmering in my kitchen. My pantry love is back.




Kiyi Kiyi said...

Thank you so much!
I was just thinking about doing this, but I didn't know where to start.

simply patti said...

free food... today, I gleaned a bushel of tomatoes, a huge bunch of celery, red hot chili peppers, and a ton of baby carrots from a friends garden. Tomorrow will be a tomato sup canning marathon.

Blessed Be

Val in the Rose Garden said...

That is wonderful Patti! I love free food. I just shucked 94 ears of free corn that wouldn't make it until next weekends market. :) Making dried cream corn out of it. Putting it in half gallon jars, with, of course, new labels. ;) Tehehee... having so much fun with this. I keep thinking 'Christmas'.

Valerie @ Frugal Family Fun Blog said...

These are so pretty! I'm so happy to hear you're back into canning... I can't imagine you going without or heaven-forbidden letting good organic food go to waste (*gasp*). THAT would be a terrible sin!

Rachel said...

Oh, those labels look great! Glad you are filling up your winter stockpile!

Christina Scovel said...

I love the labels. What a great idea and they add such a nice touch of homemade-ness to the jars!

Gardentyme said...

Great labels...I will have to make some. Hey I was wondering, I made some of your delicious roasted tomato sauce and canned it but it is separating in the jars. Is that normal? I was also wondering, do you use organic peaches for canning? They are so hard to find. I love reading all your posts. It reminds me of when my kids were little and we homeschooled using Waldorf methods. Tricia

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Good Morning Tricia. :) My tomato sauce does seperate in the jars a little. That is totally normal. Also, the peaches float to the top. In smaller mouth jars that doesn't happen as much, but in the wide mouth jars, they float to the top.

I use No Spray peaches for my canning. Organic peaches are hard to find... even here. But that is because orachards take many years to certify organic instead of the 2 to 3 for farms. The reason they take so long is becuase of the soil. You don't/can't replace the soil trees are grown in and so therefore, the best you can do is not put any new nastys down into it and wait. So you will have a hard time finding organic peaches unless the grower has been growing like that for years and years. No Spray ensures that there is no pesticide *on* the fruit. That is all I look for.

Have a great day!

Val said...

Your labels are so pretty! Thanks SO much for the fabulous tutorial, I'll be linking to this post.

The Tungseth Family Blog said...

Just wondering where you got your pictures from? Thanks

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Most are mine. A few are from a google search. I asked permission for a couple and one got back to me and said I could include it in the tutorial and even a PDF with a link to his blog, but I ended up using my own pic for the tutorial.

It helps I take pictures of all my food... lol. :)


anotherkindofdrew said...

Hey there Val. Thank you so much for this tutorial and the images. I really appreciate it as my canning is ready for "the next level."

I was curious, where did you get your hole punch? I have looked online but they are over $30. I am hoping I just missed the more affordable ones.

I appreciate any information from anyone. Thank you so much and thank you for this blog. I love it!


Val in the Rose Garden said...

Hi Drew! I picked up my hole punch at Micheal's crafts... but I have seen them at Joann's craft stores too. Mine was $14.99 full price and then I used a 50% off coupon to get it for half that. Hope that helps you find one. :) Happy canning!


Margot said...

Hi Val! I just found your blog while searching for canning label tutorials. I just tried to click on your tutorial, but it will not allow me to access your flicker page. Do you have this posted somewhere else? I am really enjoying your blog and so happy to have found you!! Thanks,

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Hi Margot! There you are. Sorry if that was a broken link. I think there is a glitch in my flickr as I have had a couple of people say that they couldnt' get to things lately. I will look into it... but for now, I also uploaded it to picasa web and just checked and that is working! So enjoy and have a blessed night!

Margot said...

Yeah! Thank you! Your photo tutorial is awesome and my labels came out great!!! Thank you so much Val!!!
Now to try some of your recipes. :)

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