Water Bottle Centerpieces

Looking for a centerpiece idea that’s easy on the wallet and also eco-friendly? Check out these centerpieces made out of small and big recycled water bottles!
Water Bottle Centerpiece 1

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Mark+Rachel-133 Gary Chiang Photography

Mark+Rachel-173 Gary Chiang Photography

Mark+Rachel-5 Gary Chiang Photography

Mark+Rachel-138 Gary Chiang Photography

With less than one month before my friends’ outdoor Hawaiian wedding (you can read more about it here), I had to come up with centerpieces for 10+ tables. I knew that I wanted to incorporate the theme of water, sand and fire, so I needed something that would hold one of these three elements. But what do I use and how? Well, my first step in brainstorming: Google search! (As much as I hate the fact that Google knows so much about everyone, I do love Google…) So I began searching for wedding images and the internet is brimming with them! Of course, with unlimited funds, the sky’s the limit in terms of creating incredible-looking centerpieces. But I needed to find a budget-savvy solution… One night, brainstorming around my backyard, I looked over at the pile of hopefully-soon-to-be-recycled but-too-lazy-to-go-to-the-recycling-center water bottles that have been amassing for months. Then came the idea, ‘Ok, why not make something out of these plastic bottles since I have plenty of them?! If I mess up, I have more!’ At first, I was going to cut them at different heights and use them as vases (as inspired by this image.)
Water Bottle Vases
(Source: http://inhabitat.com/fullfill-vases/fullfill/)

I thought the ridges on the bottle were cool and not so cheap-looking when you get rid of the labels. You know, anything simple that’s repeated looks good. But vases are so predictable at a wedding, no? How about another way of using the bottles? Then after a dinner conversation with my friend (thanks for the inspiration, Dora!) I locked in on the idea of cutting the 1-Gallon bottles sideways and filling them with sand to make them into mini sand boxes. These sideways bottles were perfect for transporting the wedding guests to the beach, even only for a moment, with sand and Cricut cut-outs of beach-themed images. Here’s a mock-up I made during a dry run:
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While the sand boxes adorned the family tables up in front, I made vases for the rest of the eight tables that were filled with water, real Lei flowers, sand and LED candles. Each centerpiece had a table name that were cut out with Cricut, with names like “Aloha”, “Maui Me”, “Family”, “Friends”, etc. The Cricut cut-outs were propped up by popsicle sticks, and stuck into the sand (mixed with some water to make it sturdy.) Here’s how I assembled them:

1. Cut out two identical layers of table names using Cricut. I used my Cricut Studio to make custom words and welded them together with images. Fonts and images are from the Life is a Beach cartridge. Place two popsicle sticks two-inches apart from end to end (because that’s how wide the small water bottle was) and glue them in between the layers. Use a strong glue (I used a tacky glue) so that the paper don’t come apart.
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2. Remove the label from a 1-Gallon plastic water bottle (I got mine from Costco) and cut it to about 6″ high. I made an incision with an exacto knife first then cut around the bottle with scissors. It was easier than I thought. With a lighter, burn away any rough edges. Cut a smaller (individual size) plastic water bottle, about 5″ high the same way. Glue the bottom of the smaller bottle onto the middle of the big bottle with hot glue, so that it doesn’t move around in the water. Fill the smaller bottle with sand, about 4″ high. Fill the big bottle with water, also about 4″ high. (These height measurements are relative. Cut and fill them as high or low as you need them.) Insert the popsicle sticks into the sand and place a battery-operated LED candle in the middle. You can float flowers around the small bottle. Here I have some plastic flowers from Oriental Trading Company. But we floated real Lei flowers on the wedding day. I also threw in some river rocks into the water to anchor the bottle.
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3. Here’s the finished product. You can further decorate the vase with a ribbon around it.
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With a little bit of imagination, you can recycle your water bottles into fun centerpiece creations! Please feel free to leave me a comment or click on the heart if you like this post!

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