Wine bottles are the easiest things to upcycle. The corks, caps, and bottle can all be used to make something else once the wine is gone. Don’t drink wine? It’s pretty easy to find used bottles around from other things. Try reusing a salad dressing bottle, milk bottle, or any narrow-necked glass container. Need some unique home decor? You only need to look to your empties for some inspiration.
threaded rod, cut to about 2.5 inches depending on the width of the bottle
wall hanger (picture frame hanger)
First, start with a bottle that has a nice shape for a vase, or just one you happen to like. The narrower the bottle, the easier it will be to mount to the board. Paint Mod Podge on the bottle starting from the bottom and tightly wrap the cord/twine around the bottle, painting more as needed. Mod Podge is basically glue and although it will dry clear, you will be able to see it on the glass in any open space. Once you have wrapped all the twine you like, let it dry for a while to set. Add your sticker or embellishment to the bottle where you determine the front to be.
Second, cut your threaded rod to the length needed to keep the bottle hanging straight from the board. It needs to be long enough to screw into the split ring hanger and the ceiling plate, holding the bottle away from the board. You can cut a length of it with a hacksaw or a cutting wheel on your Dremel tool (that is what I did).
Third, cut a board from a pallet that has a unique and interesting shape to be several inches longer than your bottle on either end. You can stain it, paint it, or leave it bare. Use wood screws to attach the ceiling plate to the board. Attach the ring hanger to the bottle neck and then thread it onto the rod.
Last, attach a wall hanger (like a picture frame hanger) to the back of the piece of wood to hang it with and you’re done! Simple, unique home decor.
My daughter doesn’t have much wall space in her bedroom and wanted someplace to be able to pin up small mementos, cards, etc. There is a narrow space next to her closet that a typical bulletin board would not fit in so, of course, I decided to make one. The cost? $10
Similar to the wreath, I cut wine corks in half with a sharp knife and used hot glue (multi temp) to attach them to a piece of Styrofoam. You can cut Styrofoam into any shape that will work for you. The glue holds well to the foam, better than other backings I have found.
I simply glued them in a two over two pattern since they are roughly the same size. You may need to cut the corks to fit near the ends so they will be flush to the edge. Alternate the cut ends for a more even look. (I learned this later, sad face). One of the most interesting things I learned with this project is that you can cut open the rubber corks and hot glue them as well. In the past, I didn’t use them because they would not stick with the glue but this was the first time I tried gluing the inside of the cork and it worked! (note the black corks below)
Once the foam was completely covered, we needed to figure out how to hang it on the wall. I pinned ribbon around the edges to hide the foam and add some color. The photos are a little misleading in that you CAN see some of the foam through the corks. I think this is because I didn’t take the time to cut them and make them fit tightly. You can certainly do a better job on yours! My daughter will just be covering the gaps with stuff. I used eye screws at the top, screwed into the corks. Then the same ribbon was threaded through to make a hanger.
Yard sticks. Three feet of give away advertising space. 36 inches of space to let people know where to shop for a new car, a bank loan, or much needed hardware. Before snazzy new ways of measuring, such as the metal measuring tape came along, these sticks of wood were the go-to for figuring out how long something was. Now, they mostly end up in the corners of pantry closets or hanging on a hook in the garage. I thought it would surely be easy to collect enough of these old, unused sticks for free to construct a craft project. Boy was I wrong! Apparently, creating furniture and art out of yardsticks is trendy right now. I had a terrible time finding them and when I came across any for sale in antique stores or flea markets, they were anywhere from $3-$15 a piece. What?!
I was on a roll after my Dad found 5 of them at his house and did NOT charge me for them. My goal was to make a yardstick tray, the full length of 36 inches by whatever height the number of sticks I found would equal. The tray was to be used for our ottoman, which is soft and difficult to put a drink on. Over my spring break, I decided to get started. Below are the materials I used.
thin piece of plywood large enough to be the base for all of the yardsticks.
Wood glue – I used Elmers
a saw of some kind – I used a circular saw to cut the plywood and also a hand saw
small tack nails, small L shaped brackets, or small screws
First, I laid out the sticks to determine which side I wanted to show. Some of them had the same info on both sides, some did not, and some were damaged on one side. I preferred the sides that had the city and State of the business. I also looked for the sides with the most character. I found that not all yardsticks are the same depth. So when they are laid flat next to each other, some of them stick up higher than others. This is an issue if you want to put a drink on the tray. I ended up having to put the thicker ones at each end.
Gluing the sticks to the plywood.
Sticks in a row.
Once the base of the tray is finished and dry, the edges need to be applied. I chose to use additional yard sticks to trim it out. You could use thin wood or a large picture frame as well. If you want to add hardware, such as handles, you will want to have wooden ends wide enough to attach them. Once the sides are attached, you may want to stain the sides and bottom of the tray if you didn’t do that to begin with.
Underside was stained.
I am still considering putting a large piece of glass on the top to make it more table top like, however, that will also make it very heavy. If you have made one of these, or anything else using yardsticks, I would love to hear about your project and how it turned out for you.
Wine corks are so easy to come by. I had my friends and my Aunt save and send me their used corks but you can also ask restaurants to save them for you. I have made keychains, ornaments, and wreaths out corks and I thought I would post the latest wreath I made here. This one was a request from my Mother In Law. She loved it.
Wreath base and corks all ready to go.
I cut the corks in half length wise with a sharp paring knife.
I used all purpose hot glue to attach the corks to the wreath base.
Cover the base with corks in an interesting pattern. Be sure to show the best, most interesting corks near the top.
Add ribbon and a bow to finish it off. You can screw in an eye hook as a hanger as well.