I used corks to make this bar top. I laid them in a herringbone pattern and used Famowood two part resin to encase the corks. The Famowood is self leveling and dries clear. I used to tend bar at an Olive Garden and saved all the corks that we went through. If you need a lot of corks for your project, hit up the local Italian restaurants as they always sell more wine than other restaurant types. My advice is to become a regular at the bar, get chummy with the bartender, leave a real nice tip and most bartenders would be willing to save them for you.
I took a photo frame and put corks around the photo. I also painted them different shades of purple, turquoise, and blues to give it a pop of color!
One of our designers has them as cabinet pulls. Very inexpensive and when one breaks, just replace! She also uses them as the floor guide for her barn door on her pantry. Her log cabin is decorated with many upcycled ideas which saved her lots of money and created a conversation starter in every room.
The important thing to know about natural cork is that harvesting it does not require cutting down a tree. Natural cork is derived from the bark of cork trees using a special axe which does not harm the tree in any way. The bark is harvested every 9 to 12 years, and the cork trees will still live to be hundreds of years old. Recycling and reusing cork lessens the pressure to harvest before the trees are fully ready, as well as keeping materials out of landfills.
Photo by ShadyH on Flickr.com
Use It. Create a kitchen backsplash! Cork is a durable but flexible material that has dozens of uses. Designer Regina Pace used it in this kitchen backsplash.
This kitchen was built on a budget, so Pace wanted to make sure it looked nice while still keeping it affordable. She spiced up the look of the space by combining affordable box cabinetry with 1\" x 2\" split-face travertine tile mixed in with corks.
Cut in half, the corks were exactly the right size to create a unique pattern on this kitchen backsplash.
This Houzz user did something similar without tile. Using a combination of about 650 collected and purchased corks, she cut them in half and adhered them to the flat side of the wall using double-stick foam tape.
Create instant art. Make trivets (like this one from The Wooden Bee), bulletin boards, coasters, or wall art out of corks. Since cork is so durable, you really don't need to do anything to protect them. But, if you really wanted to, you can apply a spray-on polyurethane to the corks before putting them in their frame.
Other household uses for wine corks:
Slice a small wedge lengthwise out of a cork and put it into a vinegar or olive oil bottle that pours too quickly. It will become an instant pour spout.
Clean high-carbon knives with a dash of cleanser and a cork to avoid scratching the knives.
Store knifes in drawers by cutting slits into the top of a cork, and storing the knives blade down.
Slice small discs off of the cork and put them on the bottom of furniture that can scratch the floor. You can also put them on cupboard doors to prevent them from slamming loudly.
Use corks as garden mulch. Grind up corks with a food processor and add the mixture to your garden bed. The cork retains a lot of moisture. You can also put this mixture in the bottom of flower pots.
Frame corks from bottles opened for memorable occasions, or maybe just put a few corks from your favorite bottles in a frame. Here, this user framed corks from champagne bottles they opened when each of their children was born.
Cut a small slit in a cork and level out the bottom to make a place-card holder for dinner parties, or use as a business card holder.
Put one next to your sewing kit for a quick pin holder.
Corks make great stamps for crafts! Simply carve out the design of your choice with an X-acto knife.
Lose It: Unfortunately, you can't just toss your used corks into your recycling bin. However, there are numerous organizations devoted to reusing cork and keeping it out of the waste stream.
ReCORK is a natural wine cork recycling program that collects millions of used corks from individuals, retail organizations, hotels, winery tasting rooms, bottling lines, and more. Mail your used corks into their facility, where they'll be processed into everything from sports goods to shoe soles.
TerraCycle's Cork Brigade upcycles used corks into numerous products available at major retailers. Sign up at TerraCycle.net and mail your corks in. If you collect 200 or more corks, they'll pay for your shipping costs as well.
Green manufacturing company Yemm & Hart accepts natural corks that are mailed into their processing facility. The Missouri-based company is converting them into wine cork tiles for construction and design purposes.
Jelinek Cork Group reuses the corks and turns them into just about everything, including flooring, ceilings, dartboards and fishing rod handles. Check out their locations here to mail corks to a facility that's nearest to you.
How do you re-use your corks? Tell us! Share a photo in the comment section below.
More Use It or Lose Its:
How to Get Rid of a Mattress
What to Do With Leftover Building Materials
How to Get Rid of Old Light Bulbs
Original article and pictures take http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/907781?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=updates&utm_medium=email&utm_content=gallery5&w=475949 site