Tuesday, November 1, 2011

What to do with wine corks

If you are like me, you like to drink wine. I really only drink white wine, but as I'm going to a wine tasting in Boston this coming Saturday, I am going to give red a chance. But this got me thinking- what do people do with their wine corks when they are done? I thought I'd explore some ideas for DIY projects to do with used wine corks!

1. Tuscan Wine Relief Cork Display Wall Art

I stumbled upon this wall art while shopping for a housewarming gift. It's a really great way to keep and store your corks without them getting in the way or overcrowding junk drawers. This isn't technically a DIY project, but more of a gradual creation. You could even dye the corks different shades of reds and green to represent the grapes that the wine is made from!

2. Turn Corks into Candle Holders

I found this idea on Pinterest and thought it was a good reason for me to start drinking more wine (or taking corks from friends). Candle holders can be expensive if you want the fancy good ones, and the cheap ones are usually boring. All you need in order to make one cork candle are corks, a tea candle, a large glass cylinder, and a small glass cylinder. The blog that gives instructions mentions that the smaller glass is from a Dollar Tree, so you can imagine what an inexpensive but cute project this is.
3. Wine Cork Coasters

The top coasters are definitely easier to make than the bottom. All you need are cheap, square picture frames with the glass and backing taken out, hot glue, and 8 corks per coaster. The bottom coasters are unique and could also serve as trivets for hot dishes, but are difficult to make. For the bottom coaster, you have to slice corks with a sharp knife to get them all in a uniform size. Then, you would have to stitch them together with a needle and thread (the difficult part). I wonder if a stapler would do the trick...

4. Make a Homemade Piece of Art
One of the best things about cork is that it is 3 dimensional. Many little kids have those wooden/plastic letters from Michael's that correspond with the first letter of their name. They paint them, add stickers to them, or leave them white and hang them in their rooms. Pictured above is one of those cheap, wooden letters, covered in corks. Since this one doesn't look very kid friendly, I bet it would be super easy to dye the corks and then adhere them as a fun project!

5. Wine Cork Bottle Stopper

This last idea is probably the most common use for recycled cork. Cork is used in wine bottles to prevent the wine from leaking before you open it, so it makes perfect sense to use cork for the same thing when you haven't finished the bottle. You simply cut down the cork at an angle so the bottom is thin, and attach some little trinket lying around your house (like Legos for example). Clearly the person who made this giraffe bottle stopper is one of those people who buy little memorabilia from everywhere they go in the world.