We’ve been thinking of more ways in which we can care for each other during lockdown and beyond. Creative craft projects are a wonderful tonic for our wellbeing. Experts credit craft activities with soothing loneliness, anxiety and clinical depression. There’s also a practical perspective: repurposing everyday items through simple craft projects chews through household clutter.
Glass bottles offer a solid supply of easy and satisfying craft projects, resulting in practical products and beautiful gifts to brighten a loved one’s day. We’ve collected our favourites to inspire you.
Preparation is easy
Soak your empty glass wine bottles in the kitchen sink, using warm water and a squirt of soap. Leave for a good half hour. Peel off the labels. If you have a dishwasher, pop the label-less bottle inside for a good clean.
Solutions for stubborn sticky labels
Manufacturers use a variety of polymers to attach labels. Some labels slide off after soaking in soapy warm water. Other have a sticky residue that soap and water struggles to shift. This tacky situation is easily solved. Boiling water melts the gummy glue behind the label. Pour freshly boiled water into your empty glass bottles. Leave for ten minutes. While you are waiting, make your magic paste. A few pumps of your favourite soap (perhaps using your glass bottle soap dispenser we detail making later on), and two tablespoons baking soda. Mix well until you create a slick paste, adding more soap and baking soda for the ideal viscosity.
Apply your magic paste over the labels or sticky residue right the way round the bottle label area. Leave the magic to work overnight. In the morning wash the paste from the bottles, and be astonished.
Brilliant beginner projects
Fantastic beginner projects include decanting dried legumes and pulses into squeaky clean glass bottles to store on the kitchen counter. You’ll use up old opened packets of pulses in the pantry, and create a beautiful aesthetic in your kitchen. We suggest allowing the colours of the dried legumes to decorate and label the bottle. Of course, there is nothing and no one stopping you from replacing healthful legumes and pulses with the cheerful charm of smarties for a colourful treat.
Another super easy way to repurpose glass wine bottles is to use them as candle holders. Some of us love the clarity and sparkle from a bare glass bottle. Clear glass creates a wonderful aesthetic enhanced by candlelight. Blackboard paint on old glass bottles creates versatile and fun storage, ideal for the whole family. Begin with a clean glass bottle, paint and leave to dry. Decorate with quotes, drawings and good old common sense content labels.
Bedazzled glass wine bottles = spectacular DIY soap dispensers
DIY soap dispensers are a fun and easy way to brighten up your home with meaningful pieces. They also make a marvellous gift for loved ones. Who knows, perhaps you’ll surprise your local primary school or care home. For the cost of one morning or afternoon having fun, you can create a gorgeous practical product. Some people love using old spirit bottles, others repurpose empty glass water bottles, whilst some collectors repurpose mason jars.
How to make a rhinestone soap dispenser
Many online retailers stock excellent pumps used for soap dispensers. A stunning variety awaits, from stainless steel to glossy black plastic. Multi packs are available for less than a cup of coffee. The same goes for decorating your soap dispenser. Infinite decorating options include chalk paint, pastel block colours, sharpie doodles and a riotous rainbow of rhinestones.
You will need: a clean, bare glass bottle; E6000 epoxy or other reputable craft glue; multi coloured rhinestones (a bag of 4-5mm resin ones are cheap as chips and keep their sparkle); a wooden stick (toothpick or skewer) and your favourite music playlist.
Press play on the playlist. Sprinkle some rhinestones into a shallow dish (an old jam jar lid works well).
Apply a thin line of glue alone the bottom of one side of the glass wine bottle. Then, using your wooden toothpick or skewer, dab enough glue to the tip of the stick so you can pick up a rhinestone. Transfer said rhinestone to the line of glue on your glass wine bottle. Repeat. Try not to leave spaces between your rhinestones. Keep going, row by row until you cover the bottle. Your gorgeous creation will need 24 hours to completely dry.
Troubleshooting rhinestones on glass bottles
If rhinestones stubbornly remain on your stick you’re using too much glue. Your rhinestone will go where it’s stickiest, so make sure the line of glue on your glass bottle is tacky enough to take the rhinestone easily from your wooden stick. The glue buys you enough time to nudge rhinestones into position. Use smaller rhinestones on edges and corners.
Repurposing your recycling is satisfying and creative. Upcycling your glassware delivers ideal craft activities to share online with friends looking for things to do at home, or make with your children, or treat yourself by going solo.