Painting Clear Wine Bottles for Outdoor Sculptures

by Amanda
4 Materials
4 Hours

I absolutely love outdoor decorations that use wine bottles! Especially blue bottles, but those can be harder to come by. I have colored bottles before using Modge Podge and food coloring for a transparent bottle, or with spray paint for an opaque one, but I wanted something different this time.

Luckily, this project only requires supplies that most crafters already have on hand!

I am using this process to make a garden dragonfly, so I will explain more on my other supplies later.

For now, you will need: clear wine bottles, spray paint, Modge Podge, and food coloring.

First you need to clean the bottles. To remove most wine labels, you can use a hair dryer on the hottest setting to warm up the adhesive and pull the label off. Use an abrasive sponge with dish soap to scrub any left behind adhesive. Wash the inside and outside well with soap and water and allow to dry completely.

Put the spray paint nozzle right up to the bottle and spray the inside in quick bursts, rotating the bottle after each one until you get to your desired coverage.

After spraying, you can set the bottle upright to let the paint continue to drip down into the bottle for a few seconds, then turn and prop it upside down. I use two boxes for this, one slightly smaller than the other. Allow them to sit upside down at least 15 minutes, then flip so they can continue drying.

I repeated the process with green spray paint on two of the bottles. You can continue to layer spray paint if you want an opaque bottle.

Mix Modge Podge with food coloring. I used two containers and mixed a blue in one and green in the other, then poured a some of each in each bottle.

Roll the bottles around to coat the inside completely. Mix up more color if you need to, but keep in mind that you will have to pour out any extra. The colors will mix some while you swirl them around the bottle. It’s ok if you get a little paint or Modge Podge on the outside of the bottle, just make sure you scratch it off with your fingernail before baking.

Once the bottles are completely coated, turn them upside down to drain out extra colored Modge Podge. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP! How long they sit will depend on how much extra you used.

I put my bottles upside down into the containers I used to mix my colors so I could save them for another project.

When they are well drained, place on a cookie sheet in the oven with some parchment paper. You will most likely have to take one rack out and place the other as low as possible. Turn the oven on to 225°F and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. They are done when the Modge Podge no longer looks milky. Turn off the oven and let the bottles cool before removing them.

See how mine have white at the bottom? I was impatient and did not drain them long enough, so a lot pooled at the bottom. Don’t do this! 😆

Here are my finished bottles! The outsides are waterproof, the insides are not! They can handle a little moisture, though, so hang them upside down or seal the top so there won’t be any standing water in the bottle. I love to make bottle trees or other garden sculptures, like the dragonfly I made with these bottles, or you can use them inside for dried flowers or other decorations!

The fun with this is you can add as many layers of spray paint or different food coloring combinations to really make your bottles unique!

My husband welded a frame for the dragonfly, and I spray painted plastic baseballs for the eyes.

Resources for this project:
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Frequently asked questions
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  3 questions
  • Kim Kim on Jun 30, 2018

    How did you fasten the rebar together?

  • Bon28314334 Bon28314334 on Jun 30, 2018

    Are these two different ways to paint bottles or do you spray AND modge podge the same bottle for the final product?

  • Minnetta j Minnetta j on Sep 03, 2020

    Hi I made some of these and love your idea with paint but I was wondering how you attached the bottles? I used liquid nail and it has already come apart :(. Thank you

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