Decorating With Wine Bottles

This is a perfect question to ask an artist. Bohemian types have been decorating with wine bottles forever. The beauty of light shining through a bottle is part of this effect, but it is undoubtedly also about using what one has.

Wine bottles come in a huge variety of shapes and colors, and sizes. This selection alone can lead to many applications. You can color-coordinate with any décor or use contrasting colors for accents or ethnic wine labels or types for a certain theme.

Bottles make excellent vases, of course. Try using them as tall containers for dried grasses, or put one perfect bloom into each bottle, all in a row. This can be great fun as the seasons change, finding a seasonal flower or greenery to fit each bottle size.

This is great on a mantelpiece or along a windowsill or narrow shelf. Wine bottles can hold incense sticks, feathers, or flags. The nice weight of a wine bottle makes them perfect anchors for holding any long-stemmed, lightweight item.

They can also be used for collections in themselves. Set upon a high ledge or windowsill, you instantly have a stained glass effect. The many different shapes and colors can be rearranged constantly for changes in mood. One enormous bottle makes a strong statement, and if you have deep windowsills, it is always magical to see the sunshine through a bottle.

 You can put tiny strings of lights inside for a delightful accent-lamp, or wire the top with a bigger fixture, easily done with kits or parts bought in hardware or variety stores. Then you can find a shade to fit, and there’s a distinctive lamp, like no other.

If you have a glass-cutter for bottles, you can take the bottoms off, sand the edges, and hang the bottles with wiring to make dangling chandeliers or single accent lights. All the hardware is easy to find these days at any electrical store or specialty hardware store. Choose the light bulbs to fit the size and shape of the bottle. Very posh catalogs feature reproduction antique-style incandescent bulbs, or you can experiment with the new diodes or fluorescents.

Wine bottles can become part of the walls, like the famous Earthship Biotechture recycled techniques in Taos, New Mexico. The bottles are actually laid into the adobe-style or cement walls so that light shines through, with dazzling results. Broken bottles can also become part of mosaics, laid into plaster or cement in sections for accents or complex images. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

The bottles can be cut into dome-shapes for bells over plants, mini-greenhouses, or terrariums. Likewise, they can cover artifacts. People have discovered that the bottles can be slumped or melted partially to collapse in a ceramic kiln, making cheeseboards or flat decorative trays to use or to hang. Mobiles of glass bottles can make interesting wind chimes, whole or in parts. 

Once you start, it is fun to keep experimenting. And that is what the art of interior design is all about. Recycle those wine bottles for a truly distinctive look.