Bottle Slumping

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The last new technique I tried this month was with much help and cooperation from my good friend, Mademoiselle Arriere GraMere.   Mlle GraMere has a kiln and after searching dozens of on line how to sites, we finally decided on some instructions for slumping bottles in a kiln that we both could understand.  After removing the labels, washing and thoroughly drying four wine bottles, I took them to Mlle for a firing.  If anyone is interested in trying this themselves, let me know and I will e-mail you the  instructions.

Mlle was very concerned that two of the bottles rolled and stuck together during the firing, but I thought that was just more opportunity for a unique project.  Not to worry, as I started to work with them, they popped apart.

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Each bottle was unique.  No molds were used, so they each took on individual personality.

The flat green bottle would become a cheese tray.  Using hot hot glue, I attached small flat marbles to the bottom section of the plate to form a grape cluster and decorated the neck with just a little raffia.

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A friend of mine had seen a cheese tray with fancy little picks in a store with a hefty price tag.  I promised I would make her one for a fraction of the cost.  I purchased some plastic drink stirrers for about $1.00 and some beads for .95.  Using complimentary colors, I assembled the beads at the end of the picks and then found some left over grommets in my scrap book stash to hold them in place.  I just put a tiny drop of hot glue at the bottom of each bunch of beads and slid the grommet in place. Fuzzy Feline #2 liked this part of the project.

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This is the finished product.  I think she’ll like it and I since I used left overs and cast aways, the total cost was less than $2.00

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With the blue bottle, I used some stencils I purchased for glass etching.  I applied the stencils per the package directions by taping them in place and rubbing on the adhesive stencil with a flat stick.

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Once the stencils were in place I coated them with glass etching medium being very careful to stay on the stencil.  The directions on the stencil said to leave the etching medium on for only 1 minute, but I knew from past projects, this would not work, so I left it on for 5 minutes.

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Then I simply rinsed off the medium and the stencil with water.  This medium is VERY caustic, so clean your work area thoroughly after you are done and make sure you keep fuzzy friends and kiddos away from all of it.

The etching don’t show up too well in the pictures, but the piece is quite lovely and very unique.   You could us it for a spoon rest, change tray or any thing else you can imagine.

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The last two bottles started stuck together, but later came apart, so I added a little whimsy to them.

I used spray on chalk board paint to form a square in each flat area.

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I used glass paint to make a frame around the chalk board area of the clear bottle and left the green bottle’s chalk board area just plain. you can write on either with chalk.

I attached a tooth hanger to the back of each bottle using JB Quick Weld.

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The clear bottle did not collapse completely, so I decided  to turn it into a hanging vase.  Since it is January in Indiana, there are no fresh flowers to be had unless you buy them at the store, so I added some Whimsical picks.

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A hanging message board you can change with the season!

The last bottle, I turned the opposite way, inserted the cork back into the neck, secured it and added a small cup hook.  Then I made a grape cluster along the bottom, (which is now the top)

and I have a handy key hanger for my keys!

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Again, Many thanks to Mademoiselle Arriere GraMere for the use of her kiln and help with the firing process.  We have a few more experiments to do with bottles, so expect to see a few more projects next month.

Happy Slumping!



  1. Hi I am in MO just starting out in bottle slumping. Would you be willing to share as to how you slump the bottles so you can put cork back into neck? Thanks I have looked on line & cant find anything on that…………love that look

    • Contessa EauCrafty says:

      I’ve really not seen a good way to keep the bottle necks intact, I think I would try trimming the cork to fit the neck. Thanks for your comment and if you find a way, by all means let me know !

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