Tales of a Novice Crafter: The art of painting wine bottles


By Nicole Pottinger – Staff Writer

I consider myself a novice when it comes to most forms of art; including, but not limited to, musical instruments, dance, and any sort of painting or coloring that does not have little numbers inside shapes to tell me the exact color I should be using.

That being said, I do love crafting. I became instantly obsessed and overwhelmed at all that Pinterest offers. Occasionally, I try out something that I’ve seen online that looks manageable and cheap (crafting is an expensive hobby if you really want to go all-out).

I looked around my room and noticed a common trend — there were a lot of empty bottles decorating my dresser, my desk, my floor, etc. What better way to use them than to recycle the bottles in a way that would not only give me an hour or two of stress relief, but to also give my dorm room a unique flair?

Painted wine bottles are a versatile decoration because they can be customized to be sassy, elegant and can be showcased whereever

Painted wine bottles are a versatile decoration because they can be customized to be sassy, elegant and can be showcased whereever

When I began, I did what I always do when trying to craft. I got out all the supplies I could ever possibly need, including but not limited to, the hot glue gun, a variety of acrylic paints, crayons, washable markers, watercolor paints, Modge Podge, glitter glue, an excessive amount of paintbrushes, and the designated herpes of crafting, glitter.

With all of these in front of me, I grabbed two of the nearest bottles (any bottle would work, including sparkling grape juice, wine, Ale-8, beer, etc.) and started to think about how I could make them look presentable to a TV crew at HGTV. When that failed, I pulled out the laptop and Google searched “painted wine bottles.” The results were gorgeous, and I knew that I had some high expectations to fulfill. I started to paint the bottle with some reds and oranges.

I noticed two main problems: the labels were sticking out, which was hideous, and due to the way I started to paint the bottle, there was now red paint on my hands and fingerprints on the bottle. That was failure number one.

The second bottle took quite a bit longer to prepare. Peeling off the label is not only crucial, but insanely time consuming. After what felt like an hour, the bottle was completely void of all glue and label remnants.

I realized that black paint would add a classy touch to the design, and began painting with long strokes. By holding the bottle by the neck, it’s a lot easier to paint the entire surface area. When painting, do not let the bottle touch the ground. Black paint will get everywhere, and you will want to cry.

I let the black bottle dry, and added coats of black paint as necessary. While waiting, I looked up cute quotations to put on the bottle. Eventually, I found the words I wanted.

I initially wanted to write on the bottle in pencil to trace with gold paint, but I found that this technique merely scratches the black paint off the bottle and then you have to start from the beginning.

When you finally get a chance to write the quotation in gold, I suggest using a paint pen. Because brushes are frustrating, and when you mess up, you have to cover it all in black paint again. It also might lead you to buying even more bottles to even out your frustrations.

After finally getting the gold letters written (and 30 coats of black paint later), I decided I needed a border. Chevron is one of the most recognizable patterns of the past year, so therefore I figured it would be good enough to put on the bottle.

When trying to paint chevron onto a circular object, I suggest planning it out. As a result of my spontaneity and ultimate laziness, the chevron lines are not perfect. But what can you really expect from someone who hasn’t taken an art class since middle school?

Crafting is something that anyone can attempt, and many Centre students find relief from their studies by doing just that.

Junior Evan Baylor is notorious for his crafting abilities. Regarding those who cannot craft for themselves and instead buy ‘homemade’ crafts from Etsy, Baylor said, “If you went to pre-k, you can craft. As an adult they just give you more dangerous tools.”

I can say with certainty that this is 100 percent accurate. Hot glue guns are not to be messed with.

Senior Caroline Snell, is a self-proclaimed crafting aficionado who has a fondness for abstract paintings of presidents and cross-stitched rap lyrics. She believes that crafting is an art that can be learned with time and practice.

On the other hand, you have people who accept the fact that crafting is not for them. Sophomore Joanna Campbell is one of these people. “I don’t craft because I stress myself out thinking of a design and then executing the plan is also an issue,” Campbell said.

For those of us who find that crafting takes more effort and planning, do not be alarmed. There is hope for us yet.


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