We would like to say that the following projects are every bit as fun as drinking the wine necessary to create them, but that would just be an outright lie. Nevertheless, they will be fun, and in the morning, there will be no regretting it (unless the wine bottles are being emptied as need be).
If anyone is hung up, thinking recycling would be a better fate for the spent bottles, then it’s worth knowing that reusing and upcycling means the bottle doesn’t have to undergo processing again. This will likely mean less energy expended, with the added bonus of us getting something cool out of this deal.
So, if there are no further objectives, here are five cool DIY projects — some really nice things to have around the house — to do with old wine bottles.
1. Self-Watering Planters
If growing herbs on the kitchen windowsill has for some reason been put on the backburner, perhaps the right, stylish pot was never available or the thought of watering something every day was just too much, this project is a perfect fix. It’s simple, looks fantastic and can help us all grow a few more edibles ourselves. Here’s what to do:
Cut a cleaned wine bottle (watch this video for help) about two-thirds the way up from the bottom. Put the top section upside down into the bottom section. Thread a wick—a strip of old clothing, the remains of a broken shoelace, a length of cotton rope—through the pouring spot of the upturned top end, letting the cloth hang a bit below the mouth. Fill the topside with soil and the bottom with a couple of inches of water. Plant some herbs. Just add more water to the bottom when its empty.
2. Tumblers and Glasses
Now that we are all comfortable with our glass cutting, why not take advantage and use our old bottles to create a full set of tumblers and glasses. The idea is simple enough, but the results are really cool. Cut a set of four or six wine bottles about two or three inches high for great cocktail tumblers (or even rustic wine glasses) and cut another set a bit taller for normal water or juice glasses. Be sure to think about the color, watching out for the right hue of glass, and remember to sand the edges before using them.
And, if there is any worry about what to do with the top bit that remains after cutting, it can either be recycled or used to make something else. For instance …
3. Elegant Candle Enclosures
There are many things worse than having a romantic evening spoiled by candles constantly blowing out, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t really aggravating. Plus, since we’ve already cut glass bottles in half to make tumblers and glasses, why not put those top sides to use as well? Find a nice base, maybe a piece of tile, a dish or drink coaster, and light a tea candle on it then protect the flame with the top of a wine bottle. It glows beautifully, wards of the wind and looks quite nice in the meantime.
4. A Wine Bottle Tree
Wine bottle trees can be anything from curvy-cool and elegant to full on Christmas trees (literally, with twinkling lights and all). All it requires is keeping attractive bottles, creating a “tree trunk” out of sturdy metal rods with branches spindling out or doweling fastening together or massive fence posts with protruding bolts. This can be weighted down in a big flowerpot or in the ground outside. Turn the empty bottles up onto the branches, or stands, and it can create something quite lovely to look at.
5. A Warm-Glowing Lantern or Lamp
Let’s give ourselves two options here, inside elegance and outside ambience. For an inside lamp, there will be a short strand of miniature Christmas lights and wine bottle, either stuffing all through the top for a lazy version or going Bob Villa’s route, with a drill and specialty bit for the handy person version. To make a basic wine bottle lamp, you can follow some easy instructions, needing just a few materials, to make a lamp with no base needed in just a few minutes.
For outside ambience, nothing says rustically suave like torches, and wine bottles bring just the right touch of class to it all. The simple route is filling the wine bottle with some torch fuel, a la Tiki torches, inserting a fat Tiki-like wick (be sure to fasten the wick so that it doesn’t fall into the bottle) into it and feeling satisfied with it placed on a table or somewhere snazzy.
So, it seems we’ve reached a great time to drink a little more wine, savor the idea of what we’ll be doing with our bottles and put it off for another day or two, however long it takes to create a sufficient collection of material.
Lead Image Source: Lucy Orioski/Flickr