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By Kim Humphrey
Posted Apr 25, 2020
Posted Apr 25, 2020
It's the three billionth day of coronavirus lockdown (or at least it feels like it) and we're on yet another quest for things to keep our kids occupied that don't involve going to the store for supplies. As I glance over at our overflowing bin of recyclables, there is one conspicuous item that seems to make up a large portion of said overflow-age: wine bottles. Considering the documented huge spike in wine consumption right now, we're betting you may have some bottles and corks piling up at your house, too.
The good news is that we found some pretty cool DIY craft wine bottle and cork projects that will keep the wee ones (and even the grown ups) occupied for a bit. But beware, you may love these projects so much that you may be forced to drink more wine to keep up with all the creativity. I know...darn.
First things first, all of these wine bottle projects require a clean bottle with all labels removed before diving in. To completely remove the labels, give them a good one-hour soak in warm, soapy water. Peel off what you can of the labels and then use a scrub brush to get any remaining bits off. Finally, use isopropyl alcohol paired with your scrub brush to remove any leftover glue residue.
Note that since wine bottles are obviously breakable, smaller kids will require supervision or may be safer by sticking with the cork crafts.
Glass Bottle Minions
Kevin, Stuart, Bob, Dave . . . who's your favorite Minion? Your kids will love creating a Minion or two or three with this video tutorial that requires only a bottle and acrylic paint. If you don't have ready-made googly eyes laying around, you can simply paint the eyes on. Note that this tutorial uses a clear bottle and creates the main body color by pouring yellow paint inside the bottle and swirling it around to coat. If your bottle isn't clear, you can paint the outside of the bottle as your first step, wait for it to dry, and then add the additional painted details.
Photo: Cork Superheroes via Molly Moo Crafts on Facebook
How adorable are these?! This cork superhero craft lends itself best to champagne corks for a more defined head, but you could definitely use wine corks as well. And don't limit yourself to superheroes! Kids can create any of their favorite characters - animals, princesses, Star Wars, fairy tale characters, and more. There are a bunch of fun design ideas here. If you want to get extra fancy, you can even create hair, fur, ears, capes and other details using felt, yarn, feathers and other simple craft items you likely have in your supply.
Wine Bottle Candle Holders
This would make a perfect DIY Mother's Day gift for mom or grandma! Decoupage is a great project for little hands and the finished product achieved by combining tissue paper with glass is quite beautiful. Stick a candle in the top and you've got a great homemade gift. Click here for the full tutorial and supply list. In lieu of a candle, you could also purchase a small strand of string lights to stick inside to illuminate.
You can use both champagne and wine corks for this craft; the champagne corks allow for a larger design. If you have a large supply of corks like we do (don't judge), the possibilities are literally endless in terms of different designs of stamps you can make. This craft uses craft foam for the stamper design which is attached to the cork using a hot glue gun. Little ones will need help with that part of the project. Paired with a variety of different colors of stamp pads, your kids will be inspired to create for hours. You're welcome.
All we need is love (and wine), right? There are a few great things about this craft: (1) you can choose to either paint your corks or leave them natural; combining the wine stained sides in all different hues actually makes for a quite beautiful and unique design and (2) it allows for many different design possibilities beyond a heart shape. Your kiddos may get a kick out of creating their initials out of corks, for instance, to decorate their rooms. All you have to do is sketch out your design on a foam board or sturdy piece of cardboard, cut it out and use that as your template to arrange and hot glue gun down your corks. Alternatively, you can sketch your design directly on a painted canvas or other mounting surface and fill in with corks for a larger design.
Cork Toy Snake
This sssssspectacular upcycled cork snake will thrill the little reptile lover in your fam. An adult will need to start this craft off by cutting the corks and drilling small holes through the middle. Get the kids involved in 'stitching' the snake together by threading string through with a needle; you can even purchase a plastic lacing needle for safety. This version calls for tying knots in between each cork section, but you could also string beads in between.
Cork Mini Planter Magnets
This cork succulent planter craft makes my green thumb happy. These cute little guys are actually legit planters with soil included! This project is great for a teen to take on unassisted or for younger kids to do with a parent, as it requires some precise drilling to create a deep enough cavity in the cork to hold your soil, but not so big that the cork crumbles (all without maiming yourself with the drill...). There's plenty that the little ones can do on their own though, like paint the corks and plant the mini succulents.
Wine Bottle Soap Dispenser
This craft is quite apropos for the times, don't you think? With all of our obsessive washing and scrubbing, let's make something cool to house our soap! A little advance prep is needed for this one, as you will need to order a soap dispenser pump and long tube straw. Alternatively, you can use an olive oil spout if you don't mind having to grab and pour your soap. This example uses a pretty plain design but kids could easily jazz it up by using a stencil or free handing a design paired with brightly-colored glass or acrylic paint. Here are some fun decorating ideas.
Wine Cork Boats
One big advantage of corks? They float! This is a super quick craft project to put together - all you need are corks, rubber bands, paper and wooden skewers - and will provide hours of fun in the tub or for water play outside. Create pirate ships or sailboats in multiple colors; you can paint the corks, too, if you'd like.
Okay, so this is more of an adult or teen DIY but I love it so much that I had to include it. And since we are all now spending a lot more time outside (mostly just for the change of scenery from staring at the inside of our house all. day. long.), these tiki torches paired with Citronella torch fuel will double as mosquito repellent! You will need a few basic supplies that can be ordered online or picked up at your local home improvement store - crafting pebbles, the aforementioned fuel, wick, and a coupler to hold the wick in place.
Unicorn Wine Bottle
Unicorns are all the rage right now and this DIY would make such a cute room decoration for your unicorn-loving kiddo. This tutorial uses a full wine bottle for gifting (great idea!), but you can obviously use an empty one instead.
For more fun at-home DIY inspiration, check out 9 Epic DIY Cardboard Box Projects for Kids.
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