Recycled bottle jewelry - Amp up your recycled style for Earth Day!
by Tawny Reynolds on Apr 18, 2023
One of the most frequently asked questions about my eco friendly jewelry is, “Is this recycled bottle jewelry?” As with so many things, the answer is “It depends.” In this case, it depends on the color of the glass. All the glass I use in making my eco friendly jewelry is already colored. Glass bottles come in a fairly limited range of colors - mostly blues, greens, and browns - and I love using these to make my recycled bottle jewelry. But, you won’t find many pink glass bottles in your recycling bin (and if you do find one, the color is just painted on and will burn off in the focused sunshine). So, for everything else, I use various types of artists' stained glass.
Which colors of jewelry are made from recycled bottles?
Invariably the next question is, “Which colors of jewelry are made from recycled bottles, and what glass bottles do you use?”
Maybe not surprisingly, some of the recycled bottle jewelry colors are my most popular, even before someone finds out it’s recycled. Check out all the recycled glass colors in my shop!This cobalt blue recycled bottle jewelry (my top-selling color) is made from Skyy Vodka bottles! It definitely hits the traditional vibrant sapphire blue color of the September birthstone. Longer drops have an ombre shading of blues from the thinner, paler top to the full deep gem-tone of the main droplet, while designs with shorter drops add a pure, strong cobalt blue *pop*!
One of Sundrop Jewelry’s most popular colors is “Water.” Not only is it a gorgeous color in its own right - the pale blue teardrops look just like little drops of rain jewelry - it is also the perfect color for the March birthstone, aquamarine. Best of all, these pale blue translucent glass drops are made from recycled Bombay Sapphire Gin bottles!
Although these recycled bottle jewelry teardrops made from Coca-Cola bottles end up being nearly colorless, the glass has a hint of color - just enough to absorb enough the focused sunshine, heat up and melt nicely into transparent teardrops. (It also makes a pretty good stand-in for the April birthstone, diamond, since I can't make perfectly clear sun-melted glass teardrops.)
I love the super-gingery ginger ale made by Reeds Ginger Brew, which means I usually have a few bottles on hand. It's never a sacrifice to need to drink another ginger ale when I need some more glass! This recycled bottle jewelry ends up a translucent emerald green, perfect for the May birthstone.
If this warm, earthy brown color looks familiar, that's because it probably is - this recycled bottle jewelry is made from brown beer bottles! Racer 5 is my husband's favorite beer, so we always have some empty bottles lying around - and what better way to recycled them than by turning them into recycled bottle jewelry?
This dark teal glass droplet started out life as a Riesling bottle! Out of direct light, these sun-melted glass teardrops can look nearly black, but take a closer look. You'd hardly guess this deep teal blue-green glass had been rescued from the recycling bin!
These darker, slightly olive green earrings are made from recycled Martinelli's Sparkling Cider bottles! Let's toast!
I’ve experimented with a number of other recycled bottle colors over the more than a decade I’ve been making recycled bottle jewelry, but these are the colors I love most and keep coming back to. Are there any other bottles that you love the color of? Tell me in the comments below - I’m always looking for more glass to experiment!
Originally published April 10, 2017. Updated April 18, 2023.