12 Cool Ways to Use Those Empty Wine Bottles

Sarita Harbour

Is your recycling bin overflowing with old wine, beer, and soda bottles? Glass bottles fill local dumps and monster landfill sites all over the world. While households can cut down on unnecessary waste by reusing glass bottles for food and liquid storage, many of us simply have more old bottles than we know what to do with. If that’s the case at your home, it’s time to get creative! Sometimes, simply adding paint, twine, and other decorative craft supplies is all that’s needed to give an old bottle a new look and new life. For the more ambitious, learning basic glass-cutting skills opens up even more possibilities for making the most of those old bottles. Still stumped? Here are 12 new ideas for upcycling your old bottles. Give one a try, or maybe use one as inspiration for creating something uniquely your own!

1. WINE BOTTLE PLANTER

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Who doesn’t love cooking with fresh herbs? Rather than constantly buying them at the store, save some money by growing them at home and you’ll always have some at hand for future culinary emergencies. To make these herb planters cut wine bottles perfectly in half, and invert the neck down in to the base. Fill with water and insert a thick cord to make your very own self-watering herb garden! Get the full instructions on DIYready.

2. HANGING PENDANT LIGHTS

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How simple and pretty is this? A sculptural row of hanging lights is the perfect accent for a kitchen island or breakfast bar. Select recycled beer or wine bottles of similar color, size, and shape, put a small light inside each one, and suspend them from the ceiling. This distinctive look would be a great addition to a cottage or beach home. Get the instructions on DIYNetwork.

Related: 12 Outstanding Kitchen Island Options

3. OUTDOOR LIGHT

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How do you like this smart use for an old bottle? Clamp an empty wine bottle to a fence or wall near your outdoor deck or patio. Outfit the bottle with a fuel-based light or even a candle for a playful outdoor light that will cast a pleasant glow on warm summer nights.

Related: Get Inspired! 17 Sensational Deck Designs

4. STAINED GLASS PANELS

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Incredibly, this stained-glass panel is made from upcycled wine bottle bottoms. To design your own custom panel, choose an assortment of bottle sizes, patterns, and colors, then cut off the bottom of each bottle. Arrange the bottoms in a pleasing pattern, then hang your creation on the wall as art or in a window to catch the sun.

Related: 10 Stained Glass Windows We Love

5. YARN-WRAPPED BOTTLE VASES

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If you or someone you know knits or crochets, you’ll have easy access to plenty of ends of yarn to wrap around your old glass bottles. Starting at the bottom, wrap the yarn snugly around the bottle and glue it in place so no glass shows. Either leave the vase as is or paint it. Choose twine for a more rustic look. Find out how on mangoandpassionfruit.

Related: 18 Brilliant Ways to Decorate with Rope

6. BEER BOTTLE SHELVES

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A few beer bottles, some scrap wood, a drill, varnish, and elbow grease are all you’ll need to construct this new shelving unit from old bottles. Choose your bottles carefully to ensure the neck will support the wood. Switch up the effect by filling the bottles with tiny shells or pebbles. Photo: Pinterest.

Related: 5 Creative Ways to Build Shelves

7. WINE BOTTLE BIRD FEEDER

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Got an old wine bottle and a few hours to spare? If so, head over to the hardware store to pick up a few bits and pieces to create this one-of-a-kind bird feeder. Full instructions on the garden roof-coop.

Related: The Ten Best Birdfeeders for Your Wintertime Yard

8. BEER BOTTLE MOBILE

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Want an outdoor mobile that will get the attention of your friends and neighbors? This out-of-the-ordinary glass-and-metalwork mobile is crafted from beer bottle bottoms, giving new meaning to the phrase “Bottoms up!”

Related: 5 Things to Do With…Bottle Caps

9. WINE BOTTLE HURRICANE LAMPS 

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How’s this for a simple yet charming candle assortment? Just slice the bottom off three wine bottles of different shapes and sizes, and pop each one over a tea light. Group them together on a mantel or tabletop for a flexible, easy-to-make centerpiece.

Related: Make Your Fireplace Mantel Fit for a Magazine

10. BOTTLE GARDEN EDGING

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For some decorative recycling, consider burying old bottles upside down to create edging for your garden beds and walkways. This example uses only cobalt blue glass, but bottles of any color would look just as striking. Photo: 

Related: Garden Paths: 16 Easy-to-Imitate Stone Walkways  

11. WINE BOTTLE BAR

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Just like stained glass, these multicolored wall of bottles take on a magical appearance with the help of strategically placed LED lights. Impress all your friends with this seriously cool DIY project, found on Pinterest.

Related: 14 Room Dividers to Bring Order to Your Space

12. WINE BOTTLE DISH SOAP

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Glass etching is becoming a hot new trend in DIY because it’s a simple way to create beautiful, permanent and professional-looking results on glass containers. Best of all? It’s much easier than it looks! Clean off your wine bottle and then etch the words of your choosing. Finish it off with a soap dispenser attachment and voila! Instructions on Living Well Spending Less.

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