In this article, I share with you a cheap and easy way to take advantage of two things you most likely have at home: A plastic bottle that you are about to throw in the trash and a piece of fabric.
This is the optimal way to spend your time creatively, make something useful for your home and do something good for the environment. All in one!
The backstory :
At the moment, I really enjoy crafting. It isn’t only the peace of the house that allows me to, but also that I am challenged to make the most out of the materials I already have at home. So one day I thought: “What can I do with a spare plastic bottle from a photo shoot and a remaining piece of fabric from a craft?”. Fast forward to now, isn’t it wonderful that the concoction ofo these two items turned out to be a beautiful flower vase made from reusable materials?
Upcycling is a critical part in our effort to protect the environment. It is really important to find elegant and fun ways to reuse materials that we have come across and have already been used ones. A plastic bottle of water, a bottle of shampoo, the wrapper from the spaghetti you ate last night and so on.
I make a great effort to avoid all of the above and I’m very glad that I have succeeded. However, there are rare times when various annoying little plastic bags end up in my possession, like this plastic bottle that I used as a prop in a photo shoot, because of its shape. In cases like this one, I store the trash in three baskets I have at home until I find a new use for it. For example, some plastic wrappers were made into stuffing for these little pillows. This particular bottle had been in one of the baskets for more than 8 months until I turned it into a cute flower vase. In our household, no piece of plastic that is not recyclable ends up in the trash. And even those that are recyclable, are carefully evaluated on creative ways they can be reused, instead of throwing them in the blue bins.
So let’s get started! Let’s see how we can make a flower vase by reporpusing a plastic bottle and a piece of cloth.
About the materials :
- Fabric: It can be a garment that you no longer wear and can not give away because it is in poor condition, a towel that you would throw away otherwise or any other piece of fabric you want. You can use whatever fabric you have at your disposal. You can even combine your favorite fabrics for a more eccentric vase.
- Bottle: It can be glass, clay or plastic. If you can decorate a plastic bottle that would otherwise end up in the trash, even better! In this way you can decorate a bottle of water, shampoo, oil, etc.
You will need :
- A bottle
- A pair of scissors
- A book or a fixed surface
- A clip, clothespin or clip (can also be a hair clipper)
- A silicone gun or any other good glue of this type
- A cutter: In case you want to shorten the plastic bottle
How to make fabric braids :
- From the fabric you have in your hands, cut 3 strips 10 cm thick each. The length depends on the fabric you have at your disposal. If you have a long piece, even better, since it will be able to cover the entire bottle. Otherwise, you will work with individual braids that will later be merged as you glue them onto the bottle.
- With the help of the paperclip / hairclip / clothespin, secure the fabric strips on the book/ surface.
- Braid as seen in the pictures. Be careful not to tighten the braid too much for a fluffier result.
- Once you’re done, secure both ends with the paperclip/ hairclip/ clothespin.
How many fabric braids will you need?
- While braiding, place them on the bottle to work out the desired layout. How many braids are needed? This depends on the thickness of the braids, and also on the height and thickness of the bottle.
- In this step, after testing the braids on the bottle, I decided to shorten it with a cutter as seen in the pictures below.
How to perfect the fabric braids :
After we make sure we have the right amount of fabric braids, we need to polish up their edges so that they stick evenly to the bottle.
- Turn on the silicone gun, so that the glue starts heating up.
- Glue the ends of the braid together to get the effect of Picture 2 :
After completing these steps, you are ready to glue the braids to the fabric.
How to glue the fabric braids to the bottle :
- With the silicone gun, put a small amount of glue on the bottom of the bottle (Picture 1). Be careful for the silicone gun to not touch the bottle, because it’s hot and the bottle will melt.
- Glue the end of the braid with a slight inclination, as in Picture 2.
- Continue by applying glue right next to the first point, along the edge of the bottle. Keep applying glue until you reach the point where you started.
- Make sure that the first row of fabric is glued to the edge of the bottle but doesn’t reach the bottom, so that the bottle can stand straight. Check that you did it this way.
- Continue to the next level, and start applying silicone glue to the places you deem necessary. After the first level from the previous steps, you don’t need to apply glue all over the bottle, but only in some places, in order to stabilize the fabric.
- As you proceed with the braid, before applying glue at each point, make sure that you have pushed slightly down so that no gaps are created between each level.
- Continue until you reach the rim of the bottle.
- When you reach the last level, check the length of the braid before fixing it on with the glue and cut the point that you deem necessary, as in picture 1. In this picture, I haven’t glued the braid yet, but I check if this is the point where I will stop and or if I have to cut with the scissors. Cut the remaining fabric-braid, if needed.
- After adjusting the last row of braid to the required length, I go over the ends of the braid with the silicone glue as in the first steps. Meaning, I glue the fabrics together, as shown in picture 2.
Voila! The vase is done!
You will be amazed at how easy it is to make this vase and how rewarding the result can be!
Besides a flowers vase you can also create a pencil case, a container for small items, a candlestick or whatever you can think of.
So what do you think? Will you try it?
See you soon,