How To Decorate With Ginger Jars


Decorating with ginger jars, temple jars, and other chinoiserie pieces has made a comeback in the past few years. Because I have always loved blue and white pairings and traditional styles, these decor accessories have long been a go-to. If you’ve seen them and yet want to know how to decorate with ginger jars in your home, I’ve put together a list of ways to get started.

One great thing about ginger jars is their versatility within many different design styles, from traditional to coastal to farmhouse. Even better, they work in almost every room.

If you’re unfamiliar with ginger jars and temple jars, I will cover a couple of common questions about them. On the other hand, if you have already picked out a favorite and are ready to start arranging, feel free to skip to the list!

How to Decorate with Ginger Jars

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. See my full disclosure policy.

What is a ginger jar, exactly?

Ginger jars have been around for thousands of years in ancient China gaining popularity in the 17th century. They originated as storage vessels in the Far East, where people used them to store goods like salt, herbs, and spices – including ginger. Once these goods were exported to Europe in the 19th century, they became known as ginger jars.

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What is the difference between a ginger jar and a temple jar?

Perhaps you also have heard of temple jars, which look similar as far as their patterns go, but are shaped differently. While temple jars also were used for storage, their shape is different. They often are taller than ginger jars, taper near the bottom, and have a domed lid with a finial on top.

Last, you may also see rectangular jars with similar patterns used on ginger jars and temple jars. They most often are tea jars. You’ll see all three in our list of examples below.

How to Decorate With Ginger Jars, Temple Jars & Tea Jars

Today we’ll tackle creating beautiful spaces with chinoiserie jars in various rooms of your home and in numerous ways!

1. Ginger Jar Topiaries

My personal favorite use of ginger jars is with these spring decor ginger jar topiaries I created for my living room mantel. I used preserved boxwood topiaries from Ballard Designs and these ginger jars. And I now keep them up all year ’round because they work with any season!

Chinoiserie pots with boxwood topiaries
Ginger jar topiaries in my living room

This is just one of my many examples of how I’ve had a specific look in mind and ultimately found the exact pieces to put it together myself. Isn’t that the most fun part of decorating spaces?

double boxwood topiary

2. Centerpiece with Ginger Jars

Along the same lines as plants, floral arrangements are one of the simplest and most beautiful ways to decorate with ginger jars. Natural materials work so well with their intricate motifs. While you will see many different patterns on ginger jars, many include nature scenes or details.

While these arrangements can make gorgeous centerpieces, that doesn’t mean they’re reserved just for the dining room. Consider surrounding it with artfully arranged books in a formal living room or parlor or entryway, as shown here.

3. Chinoiserie Jar Art

You’ll also see ginger jars and temple jars in paintings and prints. In the example below, a designer layered bold, whimsical art pieces and then added a three-dimensional temple jar touch to the right.

4. Ginger Jars as a Vase

If your style is more traditional, you probably favor neutrals with smaller pops of color here and there. In that case, you will love seeing all the colors you can contain with these versatile ginger jars. They show off those bold spring and summer blooms so elegantly.

Give the decorative piece an even great impact by using them in the living room in a vignette on a coffee table, console table or media cabinet!

5. Non-Traditional Colored Ginger Jars

While the classic blue and white motifs are the most popular (and my favorite!), you can also find many other colors of ginger jars, temple jars, and tea jars.

Check out the complementary color pairing of this bright orange-and-white collection against a palette of primarily saturated blues, whites, and creams.

6. Blue and White Bowl Decor

Evoke the same sense of traditional decor by using blue and white ceramic bowls in your decor, not just jars! This beautiful rose trellis bowl holds faux florals (orchid) in my dining room. I love how it brings the classic style in a fresh way to this room.

Faux orchid plant in dining room
Faux Orchid in a Blue and White Bowl in my Dining Room

7. Kitchen Counter Decor

Even though today’s ginger jars are mostly decorative and not for food storage, it still makes sense to have them in the kitchen, too.

In this mostly white, pristine kitchen, an island arrangement like this adds just the right amount of color, texture, and pattern to lend a cheery warmth while keeping it refined. It’s interesting to see the shapes of the temple jars repeated along the outside of the room in muted hues.

8. Chinoiserie Jars for the Bathroom

The combination of pieces around this bath space has a similar effect. Some are purely for decoration while others, like the garden stool, hold bath linens. You could even use the larger jars to keep bath essentials tucked away.

9. Ginger Jar Decor in the Bedroom

Ginger jars also work well in bedrooms. In this case, I added a temple jar to the lower tier of a nightstand. It looks even better after solving the troublesome issue of hiding cords.

White nightstand with cream lamp and chinoiserie ginger jar.

10. Ginger Jar Lamps

Incorporate a beautiful ginger jar into the lighting of your home with a chinoiserie lamp base. These ceramic vases offer a beautiful and interesting focal point for the room while also providing much-needed light to your home.

I love how Eric and Ruthanne Ross incorporated these lamps in their kitchen. Honestly, they incorporate blue and white ginger jars in every room in their home and it’s breathtaking!

11. Printable Ginger Jar Art {Bonus Freebie!}

Another way I have used ginger jars in my home is through 2D designs. One summer, I created a couple of pretty summer printables and put them in natural wicker frames. The combination of texture and colors brought the perfect pops I wanted when I switched seasonal designs on my built-in bookcases.

Freebie alert in case you missed it! If you want to use them with your own project, you can grab these free lemon tree and ginger jar summer printables here.

Free Lemon Tree Summer Printables

Where to Buy Ginger Jars, Temple Jars and Tea Jars

I’ve gaethered some of my favorite places to buy ginger jar and other chinoiserie home decor along with some lamps and art, as well! Simply tap the images below to shop.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, these ideas have gotten your wheels turning about how you might decorate with ginger jars in your home. I’d love to hear about how you use them in your decor. As always, the goal is to take trends and make them your own, and beautiful ginger jars almost always elevate the look of a space.

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