Ever since I made my Christmas rag wreath with the burlap flowers, I have been really anxious to do more burlap and/or jute projects. I love the shabby chic look, especially when there is a hint of white in the project as well. I “pinned” some cool upcycled wine bottles a few months ago, but have never gotten around to making my own. Although the project is far from done, I had a medical appointment yesterday and had a bit of time to myself after, so I took the opportunity to get started. This is a not a complex task, but I have to admit it was a bit more difficult than I anticipated.
Upcycled Wine Bottle Project~ Materials Needed:
- jute, twine or string (I bought a 3 pack at the dollar store. Unfortunately, one of the spools is green. I wasn’t sure how much I would need, so I bought one pack. I have only done one bottle so far and used one whole spool plus a bit of the second one. One spool had 12 meters of twine, so I am guessing I used approximately 13 to 15 meters for one bottle.)
- empty wine bottles ~ rinsed and dried (Some sites suggest removing the labels, but I didn’t. Duh! The bottle is completely covered with string and you can’t see what is underneath, not worth the extra effort in my eyes. Perhaps I missing something and there is a specific reason for removing the labels, but I haven’t been able to figure that out yet.)
- glue gun/glue sticks or white glue
Upcycled Wine Bottle Project ~ Wrapping the Bottles:
Getting Started: I read several tutorials and some recommended starting at the top of the bottles while others recommended the bottom as a starting point. I started at the bottom by glueing the first row of string all along the bottom edge. I left about 1/2 inch of twine at the end and curved it up towards the top of the bottle. I then untwisted the strands slightly so it wasn’t quite so bulky and then hot glued it flat against the bottle. This allowed the me to place the next few rows over the end and helped to secure it beneath the tightly wound rows of twine.
This system seemed to work well and the twine seems secure and the end is well hidden. The job of wrapping the twine around the bottle is a bit tedious and took me about an hour for one bottle. You must make sure every single row is pressed tightly against the previous row in order to eliminate the possibility of gaps between the rows. I only glued the twine sporadically about every inch or two up the most of the height of the bottle.
Some of the tutorials did indicate that the incline from the main part of the bottle to the neck can be tricky and require more glue. I tried this several times, but even with regular application of glue, the string kept slipping up towards the neck. It was almost as though you were working against gravity. In the end, I decided to stop near the bottom of the neck and begin from the top working down. I started much the same way as I did at the bottom, but this time working my way down. This worked well and although the incline was still a little tricky, it did work. Of course, I was then saddled with the extra task of joining the top and bottom in what appeared to be a seamless join. I basically made the join in much the same way as I handled the ends, when starting at both the top and bottom. Clearly, this is not what I would advise.
Conclusion: For my finished project, I want to have 4 bottles. I will definitely be starting at the TOP of the bottle from now on. I am not sure if there is any advantage to working upwards, but having tried both, working down seems much easier to me and so that is the strategy I will use next time. My bottle looks completely fine and it would be difficult to see the join, but it was obviously more work than was necessary.
I still want to embellish the bottle, but may wait until all 4 are done to see what might look the best before committing to something more permanent. For now, I just added some raffia and a button to dress it up and set it on my mantel!
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