Tips and Guides

5 Creative Ways to Reuse Old Bottles at Home

Upcycle your old jars and bottles into useful containers

Photography: Cecil Jusi Baltasar

In any functioning family kitchen, empty bottles in various sizes have a way of accumulating at the end of the week. Jam jars, bottles carrying store-bought pasta sauces, condiment bottles—what do you do with them when your family has used up their delicious contents? Do you chuck them into the recycling bin? Or do you take the more fun route and upcycle them into something else?

Picking the second choice would not only remove one more item off your to-buy list (because you already made it with your own hands!); it will also reduce your trash. A win-win situation!

This particular kitchen has collected quite a big number of used bottles, so we went wild on the upcycling department. Take a look at what we fashioned out of these charmingly wavy bottles. (These particular ones used to hold homemade malunggay pesto, with their labels washed off.)


A pair of plain bookends would cost about P200 at bookstores. Use the money for something else (or better yet, save it) because you can work on something that's more fun!

Fill the jars with something heavy so they’re strong enough to keep your books in place. Since we want to keep the cost as low as possible, fill it with whatever you find in your home: garden soil, your kids’ marble collection, nails (the industrial chic look), even water with some drops of food color mixed in. 

Candle holder

There’s something about candlelight that adds a distinct warmth to its surroundings (could it be the flame?) Turning these bottles into hanging candle holders is simpler than you think!

Wind two pieces of wire around the bottle neck then secure the wire under the nodules meant for the bottle capleaving enough of the wire to use for hanging the holders. Place a tealight or any leftover candle inside the bottle. Hang and light.

RL Tip: Remember to keep the flame away from the bottle’s neck or its sides. Extreme heat may cause the bottle to break.

Food containers

These bottles are airtight, which makes them perfect storage solutions for unused food such as oatmeal, raisins, beans, etc. These raw food items usually come originally packed in plastic bags that are impractical for long-term storage. 

Table centerpiece

Throwing a dinner party but don’t want to spend on décor? Let these bottles help you out. Line them up in the middle of your table or at one corner of your buffet table. Put anything in them that suits your taste or theme! Turn them into bud vases or let them hold barbecue sticks that bear printed family photos. Have fun and feel free to experiment!

Desk organizers

Never again hunt for the wayward pencil, pen, scissors, or markers with these bottles. Instead of keeping all of those in one big black hole of a container, sort them by kind and keep them in these bottles.

Once you've grouped the items and fixed them inside the jars, you may leave them on top of your desk—they won't be an eyesore!

More on

Jumpstart Your Day: 6 Mason Jar Ideas that You Should Try

DIY: Tinted Jars and Bottles

Jumpstart Your Day: 5 Creative Ways to Recycle Plastic Bottles


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