6 Ways to Upcycle Bottle Caps

Say you had a big party, for instance a New Year's Eve party, and you are left with huge piles of empties to recycle. Well, that's just your luck. You have come into a wealth of bottle caps, and you now can make all kinds of DIY projects with them. Soak those babies in a bleach and water solution, set them out to dry, and then go to town on one or all of these DIY bottle cap upcycling projects.

Recycled Night bottle cap art by Aaron Buehring

1. Bottle Cap Art: The image above is “Recycled Night,” by Aaron Buehring. This artistic homage to Van Gogh’s famous “Starry Night” painting comprises 7,000 recycled bottle caps, collected by Buehring and his friends over the course of many years. Bottle caps, due to their availability and rainbow of fun colors, are a dynamite art material so why not try to create your own masterpiece? If you can find a talented and adventurous tile contractor, you could also use bottle caps as a material for a backsplash wall mosaic.

Photo of bottle cap covered art truck by wlcutler/Flickr.

2. Art Car Decoration: There are people who take their cars to an auto body shop to be painted, and then there's the DIY crowd. I'll never forget the leopard print van by a Denver painter I encountered one July 4th in the Rockies. It was the coolest vehicle I'd ever seen. Since art car people are usually very creative, I wasn't surprised to find this photo of a pickup truck covered in bottle caps. Though such a decoration on one's car might make getting stopped by a cop more complicated, it looks pretty rad.

Photo of bottle cap speaker by jetalone/Flickr.

3. iPod Speaker: What do you get when you combine some clever wiring and a PET bottle cap? A tiny little speaker for your mp3 player. View a DIY tutorial on how to make a bottle cap speaker on Makezine.com.

Photo of DIY bottle cap pendant by pwrgrl09bc/Flickr.

4. Bottle Cap Jewelry Pendant: Apparently, if you have bottle caps and some metallic paint, you can make yourself a fashionable (depending on your crowd) piece of jewelry. Punch a hole in it and attach a jump ring to hang the pendant on a cord or chain.

Photo of snowman with bottle cap eyes by StewC/Flickr.

5. Snowman Eyes: If you're lucky enough to live in a climate where snow still happens, bottle caps make excellent eyes for snowmen. I know that coal traditionally was used to snowman eyes, but who has a coal-fired furnace in her house anymore? Right. So bottle caps.

Photo of bottle cap magnets with painted ravens by JenHuff1/Flickr.

6. Bottle Cap Magnets: Metal bottle caps are the perfect vehicle for refrigerator magnets. Glue a flat magnet to the top (flat) side of a bottle cap, then use your creativity to decorate the inside of the bottle cap. You can paint inside the bottle cap, or glue whimsical things inside, like seashells, beads, or tiny beach pebbles.

Chaya Kurtz writes for Networx.com.

Updated July 30, 2018.

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