Bilge Water Bottle




About: I'm a Renaissance woman. I love to create things with a fantasy, medieval, or geeky edge. I'm also a math/science nerd. I have a passion for all things Halloween. I like to build props, create costume elemen...

This is a brown glass bottle given the look of a filthy, aged ceramic whiskey jug with just a little paint and dirt. Your read that right--dirt. I embellished this bottle to hold the whiskey for this year's Halloween party. Each of our liquors and mixers was given a unique and spooky or gross-sounding title. (This one was tame by comparison) This bottle started out life as a Mississippi Mud Black and Tan bottle. I have one of these bottles and it has seen quite a lot of use but the paint/dirt layer mimicking the unglazed ceramic section has remained in tact despite being handled a lot.

Step 1: Supplies

A Mississippi Mud Black and Tan Bottle - label removed and empty (or substitute similar jug-style glass bottle)
Cork to fit the bottle - I bought mine in the hardware store. They can often be found loose in the bulk section in a variety of sizes.
Masking Tape
Letter Stickers
Clear Spray Paint - matte finish
Beige Acrylic Craft Paint
Foam Paint Brush
Dirt - yes, from the garden
Sharp Craft Knife and/or Tweezers

Step 2: Lettering

The stickers won't show in the final product. They are simply there to prevent the paint from sticking to that section of the bottle that will show up as letters. It creates a relief effect.  So it doesn't matter if your letters happen to be pink, like mine, because they will be removed.

Clean the bottle well. Apply the lettering to the center of the side of the bottle you'd like to be the front.

If you'd like any embellishment to appear with the lettering, apply it now. I simply used some zeros and ones to create lines above and below the label.

Tape off the upper part of the bottle where you'd like it to continue to look like brown glass.

Spray at least two layers of clear paint around the lower part of the bottle, where you'd like it to look ceramic. This not only gives a "tooth" for the acrylic paint that is to come but seals around the letter stickers to prevent paint from bleeding under the edges of them.

Step 3: Ceramic and Filth

Once the clear paint is dry, dab a few layers of beige acrylic craft paint over it.

When the acrylic paint is dry, take it outside to the location of your dirt. Even if you bring the dirt to you, this step should be done outside because it is quite messy.

To create a textured, aged surface, you will be layering clear spray paint and dirt. Starting with the back (because you want to practice before you get to the front), spray a small section of the bottle with the clear paint, toss on some dirt, brush off the excess. Repeat until the whole bottle is covered with uneven filth. Once you are satisfied with the results, seal over the top with a few layers of clear spray paint.

Step 4: Finish

Finally, use your sharp knife and/or tweezers to carefully pull off the lettering stickers. You may need to use the blade to cut around the edges of the stickers where the paint is very stubborn but I had to do very little of this. If the stickers come off unevenly it only adds to the effect.



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    5 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    First I was automatically drawn in By "Bilge Water Bottle" Neat way to spruce
    up a bottle, I will make a "Grog" Bottle this way. If you are interested in marketing
    such a product, I could supply 100% pure Bilge Water for Free!
    Hazardous shipping fee may apply...................

    2 replies

    This would be a perfect way to contain grog, I totally agree! My husband is an aficionado of pirate culture and this would be greatly appealing to him. I'll have to make one for his grog too!


    7 years ago on Introduction

    So simple, yet so awesome. Great work and original idea.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    This looks so awesome! Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful fall day!