Concha y Toro

Francisca Jara 23/02/2021

Todo sobre el vino

Upcycling ideas for wine bottles and corks

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Because we can’t keep living without worrying about the planet, here we invite you to reflect on our actions when finishing a wine. After pouring the last glass, do you reuse the bottle and the cork that remain?

At my house, for example, we recycle them. But when it comes to special wine bottles or labels that I love; I like to keep them. As I love to cook, I have several kitchen utensils but there is one that I have never bought: the rolling pin. I always use a bottle of wine to work dough. I also like when the glass is transparent (like Casillero del Diablo Rosé bottle), to use them as a vase and decorate some corner of my house.

Is your wine finished? Here are some ideas for you to be carried away by creativity and to give  your bottles and corks a new life.

Lamps

Transforming bottles into lighting objects is one of the most common ideas. You probably already used it as a candleholder by putting a candle on it. The good news is that there are other ways to do it. The simplest is to clean the bottle, remove the labels and insert a strip of small led lights. Another option is to cut the bottom of the bottle (see explanation down below, but I recommend you seek help from someone who has experience), put the sock on the neck of the bottle (outside) and the bulb on the inside, creating a pendant lamp. If you like the industrial style, vintage light bulbs will add a fantastic finishing touch.

Economical planters

If you’ve been accumulating bottles for a long time and you are still wondering what to do with them, this might be for you. Especially if they are greenish yellow or dark brown colour (like Amelia Chardonnay and Terrunyo Cabernet Sauvignon bottles) you can use them to build exposing their colour as a decoration. A great idea is to use bottles to delimit a space in your garden and plant flowers, herbs or whatever you want. Like this one that has a circular shape, with the bottles mounted one on top of the other and its neck pointing towards the centre.

 

Glasses

Although there are several companies dedicated to transforming bottles into glasses, you can also do it on your own. Simply choose the bottles you like, wash them, and then cut them with a special tool. Otherwise, there is a trick to do it by yourself: soak a rope in flammable liquid, then tie it around the area you want to cut and set it on fire. Once the rope is consumed by the flames, put the bottle into very cold water until you hear the “crack”. Lastly, sanding the edges is recommended to avoid any sharp edges you may cut. You can find tutorials on how to do this on the internet but remember to be very careful!

Cork Stamps

With a material as noble as cork, the possibilities for recycling are multiple. Crafts, especially to entertain and develop children’s creativity, is one of its great potentials. Like these little cork stamps. Just draw your design with a marker on the flat base of the cork (use the spongiest you have, if it is dry will crumble), and with a craft knife cut a line 6mm deep outside the edge of the design. After cutting the whole design, slice into the cork sideways (slowly and smoothly) about 6mm down until you remove layer of cork so the drawing stands out. Have some ink on hand and try your new stamp!

Cork Character Magnets

As cork is lightweight and penetrable, it works great for sculpturing. Like this very small and funny characters that can be put on the door of your fridge or wherever you want. You need the corks, gauge wire, basic jewellery pliers, glue, magnets and a plier. Check the step by step here.

As you can see, the pleasures of wine do not have to end with that last glass. Starting a bottle with the intention of opening our imagination and experimenting with our hands can be an important step in building a more sustainable world.