I made these wine bottle lamps for my Featured Artist Show next weekend at Sunrose Gallery in Seaside, Oregon. The theme of the show is “Summer by the Sea” and what is more summer-y than a beach themed party with a bunch of whimsical wine bottle lamps lighting the room?
In the past I sold at least 100 wine bottle lamps at Sunrose Gallery but they seemed to “go out of fashion” and I quit making them. My bottles always featured the colorful front label which I used as the theme to decorate. A few weekends ago I wandered through the wine aisle at my local store and was so inspired by the labels on these bottles and thought a little collection of them would be perfect for my Featured Artist Show.
I purchased the 20 clear mini lights from a shop on Ebay and they came just four days after I ordered them. I already had the turquoise leather strings for one bottle that I purchased for my Mermaid piece.
I got the patriotic star necklaces at a garage sale a few weeks ago to use in the bottle with the abstract flag.
The first step is to drill the hole. I get diamond encrusted drills and use a corded drill because it has the power to drill the hole lickety split. I make a 2″ paper clay “dam” where I want the hole and fill it with water. To start, it works best for me to hold the drill bit at an angle and not straight on to get a “ridge” for the bit to stay in place. After the drill bit has made that ridge, I rock the bit back and forth slightly and also stop to add some water if it all sprays out. If my instructions sound too vague there are a bazillion You Tube videos to get you through making a hole. All I can say is if I can drill a hole in a bottle, YOU CAN!
Step Two: Remove the back label which is SO EASY if you use Ronsonal Lighter Fuel.
I can remove the label in about 2 minutes using Ronsonol and a razor blade. Squirt some at the top of the label and let it soak for a minute, then scrape with the razor blade. A combination of “squirt” and “scrape” the back label easily comes off with no sticky residue!
I like to use what I have and I had this pile of trims for another project I made last year:
How do you decorate your bottle? PLAY! Not every idea works, so I try again and dig deeper into my stash for stuff.
It is super easy to stuff the lights into the bottle. To ward off paranoia that stuffing them into the bottle will cause one to short out, I stuff them into the bottle while they are plugged in to make sure none of the bulbs is loose and they stay lit.
If you are considering a big summer party bash wouldn’t it be fun to make up enough bottles to light your party and then as a surprise for your guests let each one choose a bottle as a souvenir to take home? FUN!