Upcycle makes art from recycled Glass

Upcycle makes art from recycled Glass; Why not give it a go?

It is only natural that you have a few wine bottles on your hands and no idea what to do with them besides throwing them away. But we, at Upcycle, are all about Upcycling, repurposing all kinds of green sustainable projects. Everything can be used in one way or another and be given an innovative purpose and life in your home, so don’t be in a rush to throw things

We do live in a commercial society where money and assets have become our primary goal in life, but just because we buy new things everyday it does not mean the old ones are useless. Find creative ways to reuse them adapt their function and make new beautiful items for your home and garden. Upcycle used wine bottles into centrepieces or glass lamps and chandeliers; cut them to make candle holders and unique food plates. Just let your imagination do the work for you and be creative.

green bottle light fitting on 400Upcycle has always had a passion for glass and all things to do with recycling glass. Over the past couple of months, it’s been an absolute delight seeing all the different products that can be created using a simple used wine bottle, a glass jar or glass container. The first and most obvious example is to literally turn your used wine bottles, jars or containers into the most incredible Chandeliers or simple light fittings.

 The process is easy, a quick cut to remove the base of the wine bottle, add your light fittings and voila. 

upcycle lightfitting 400










nescafe coffee bottle outside lamp 400

Nescafe coffee bottle light fitting

Alternatively lids of jars can be converted to hold the light fitting and a used glass container is transformed into a beautiful light. Sandblasting, dremelling or painting your glass light fitting with either glass stain or a ceramic paint, can make your old glass into new art.

Used beer bottles can be turned into bed trimmings for your herb garden. The bottles create an effective, yet strong and durable border, also giving your flower bed the extra height needed for mulching. Take a look at our idea here: Flowerbed Border with Glass.

bottle edge

Here we give you some ideas on how to recycle glass bottles. Why throw it away when you can make yourself a beautiful vase, or use it as a flower pot. The thing is that when you make something out of nothing all by yourself, it is the way you feel after you see the result that makes it worthwhile. All it takes is some creativity. So if you wonder what to do in your spare time, try to make something out of glass bottles. It is fun, easy and it won’t cost you anything. Cutting glass might seem difficult and quite terrifying, but the truth is the methods are very easy and are guaranteed to work every time.

Then for the not so DIY oriented people, we have the wonderful gifting ideas on our web-site. Why not buy an Upcycled
incense holder for a friend or family member, we have some outstanding examples on our web-site. Upcycle Gifts

Should you be looking for yet another amazing gift idea, explore our Candle Holders and Tea Light Holders: Candle holders
and Tea Lights.

With the assistance of Investec's agents, we have set out to source 5 000 used wine bottles. These will then be hand cut into glasses to be used in the Investec cantten. The bottles will be sandblased with Investec's logo as well as their by-line. The purpose and requirment for this project is to upcycle the wine bottles into drinking glasses, while creating an opportunity to involve community members in the project. read more about the Investec project... 

or visit our shopping cart for ideas on personalised upcycled glass tumblers

For any sandblasting or glass cutting enquiries contact us

Upcycle Initiatives

Upcycle Initiatives


UPCYCLE was established and developed in South Africa by Winnie McHenry, a design and development consultant with a strong craft, decorating and design background. An enormous amount of passion, time and effort has been put into turning UPCYCLE’s mission and dream into a reality by making a difference to the planet one person at a time.

Upcycle was born from our need as creative individuals to generate usable and useful items from the things that surround us. This is to improve the lives of the people on this planet. The amount of junk thrown away each day provided us with tons of raw materials. It wasn't long before we found that we could manufacture pretty much anything from "junk", from large format art installations,eg: "Jellyfish made from plastic bags - To gift boxes" etc... – The list is truly endless!

No, we don't get paid to hug trees; Upcycle is a company dedicated to changing the way we all look at waste. Our primary goal is to teach and empower individuals to generate their own income from the resources they have at hand. We take individuals from impoverished areas and teach them the skills they need to create useful and usable items from free and unutilized junk. Not only does this clean up the environment they live in, but also provides a source of income.

UPCYCLE – The Green Creative – creates green solutions for your waste, the reinvestment in the environment through reinventing waste and giving it a new purpose as opposed to recycling it.

UPCYCLE focuses on developing skills, transferring knowledge and training individuals to create and develop products from waste, creating sustainable job opportunities for unemployed people with the objective to develop an up-cycle set of skills implemented and supported by effective CSI projects.

UPCYCLE believes in empowering people to use their natural talents to provide them with enough income to support their families. Our up-cycling drive serves to bring this information back to our everyday lives in our step-by-step training courses. By empowering and training people to do something that can generate income & uplift their community, we are grooming skills that are invaluable to our country and our people.

Most companies have standardised their corporate gifts and stationery including event and function decor. There are very few new and exciting items in the market at the moment, and even fewer that are environmentally friendly. We estimate that 85% of corporate gifts and decor are imported, non-green items, made of potentially harmful materials that are not recycled or handmade.

UPCYCLE allows companies to promote themselves with green branding and marketing messages that include their green standing. This means that the marketing department can unlock the value in its own corporate gifts and functions and reduce its overall marketing costs.

UPCYCLE is promoting handmade products, made with recycled items, which when sold help to give groups and individuals an income for an opportunity in life.

UPCYCLE gifts were developed to feature the following key attributes:

  • Up-cycled waste materials
  • Personalised
  • Cost effective
  • Social Up-liftment
  • Hand crafted
  • Minimal impact on the environment
  • Functional and decorative
  • Sustainable and developmental

By purchasing green gifts for your corporate event you are making a difference to Mother Nature! Each item that is re-used rather than discarded relieves the impact on our industry and manufacturing processes as well as our carbon footprint as a collective.


  • Paper (1)

    handmade recycled products made from re-using waste paper from corporates and individuals wanting to reduces their carbon footprint and make a difference to our planet by upcycling their waste paper into something new and usable. Upcycle products made from paper that is pulped down and remade or even products that are created from the paper in its current state, including cardboard and tissue.

  • Glass (1)

    Recycled glass bottles into drinking glasses, wine bottles into vases, any type of glass that is no longer needed that can be upcycled into useful and beautiful new products.

  • Scrap Fabric (2)

    Offcuts of fabric from industry waste that is re-used and turned into valuble upcycled products preventing these scraps from ending up in landfil. 

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