Thursday, May 13, 2010

Earth Friendly Water Bottle - Give a Hoot!

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I live in Concord, Massachusetts - a very historic town.  At Town Meeting this year, Concord voted to ban the sale of bottled water in town, making history yet again.  The ban would take effect in 2011 - and is rather controversial...  Here is a LINK for more information about the ban.

On my last trip to Costco, I found these new bottles - just the thing for filling with your own tap water.  The set of three was less than $20 and there was another set in different colors - every family member could have their own color.  They have a locking top and a carabiner to hook the bottle to a bag or belt loop.  I think I may be seeing a lot of these around town - so why not give them a little personalization?

I set up a mat with all sorts of flowers and sayings from the Give a Hoot cartridge.  What a perfect cartridge for a project like this!  it is full of "earth-friendly" sayings and images.  By using Design Studio, I could plan out the sizes and fit quite a few shapes on a small section of the mat to conserve my vinyl.

Here is the vinyl after cutting - if you look carefully you can see the images and words.  I did a "kiss cut" which means the vinyl layer is cut through but the backing stays intact.This makes it much easier to remove the cutouts.

Here is another photo to show you how the "kiss cut" works.  the entire sheet of vinyl can be lifted from the mat and the individual items lifted off the backing.  The settings I use to do this are medium pressure (3), medium speed (3), and blade depth 4.

I applied the vinyl cuts to the water bottle without too much thought about placement - just a happy random assortment of sayings and flowers!

For an alternative, I tried a more formal design.  First, I determined a good size for the image by wrapping a piece of vinyl around the bottle.  I cut a piece four inches square for my design.

I used a frame and initial from the Storybook cartridge - here you can see the kiss cut piece of vinyl.  This piece was the Oracal vinyl.  The yellow vinyl was Wall-Pops vinyl.  I find the Wall-Pops to be more forgiving when you are working with it.  The Oracal had a stronger adhesive and was more difficult to lift and reapply without tearing.

 As a matter of fact, I did tear the bottom section and decided that just the top would work out fine - a little less formal.  It would be fun to do these for a group - adding names or decorations that represent each person.

I am not sure how well the vinyl will hold up to a lot of handling.  I have had vinyl Cricut bugheads (made with regular Wall-Pops) on my car for a couple of years and they have survived rainstorms and car washes and are only a little worse for wear.  The nice thing is that the vinyl is not expensive so you could redo the bottle as needed and change up your decorations!

This is a quick and simple project.  It is a lot of fun to figure out which decorations to use.  I think it would be a great activity to do with kids!


  1. I love the dolled up water bottles! I have two that i have been considering to vinyl up for a couple of months and your cute designs have inspired me! love the black and pink one! how do your bottles open? do they flip up? or are they the screw top type? thanks so much! Diane

  2. That is awesome! I love the idea. I could do that with my grand kids sippy cups. Thank you for sharing that with me.

  3. Love the personalization! Way to go, Concord. Recommend buying bottles that are clearly marked as BPA-free (google on BPA EPA or bisphenol A EPA to read recent announcements).

  4. The bottle top screws on with a tight seal. There is an area to push on the side of the lid under the carabiner which opens the seal so you can drink - nothing to flip or unscrew each time you want a drink.

    They are made by "contigo." I found my receipt and the item number was 327888 and the set of three cost $18.89. We already recycled the packaging so I can't check to see if it said BPA-free.

    I'll probably buy the other set next time I go to Costco - it had a green that was close to Cricut! As with many things you see at Costco, it is best to buy it when you see it since you never know if this sort of item will continue to be available. (I don't have any connection to Costco other than being a frequent shopper!).

  5. Great re-usable idea! Love that GAH cart! Has so many great cuts on it!

  6. These are a great idea and would also be so useful here in the uk where our school children are encouraged to bring a water bottle to school each day. Loving the new look blog by the way.
    Kim xXx

  7. I'd love to get inside that creative mind of yours! It must run all the time. This idea is super. Thanks.

  8. What a great idea for grandkids Christmas presents without a huge cost. I'm just learning how to cut vinyl and loving it. Thank you for another useful idea.

  9. Great ideas - what a perfect idea for summmer....and beyond!!


  10. Very cute project! I've seen bottles like these at Walmart and thought they were just a little "plain Jane" for me. I'll have to give this one a try.

  11. Hi Diane, this is a lovely idea for being able to recognize your water bottle at a glance! thanks for sharing... I have recently been asked to do up some lettering for an outdoor sign and I was wondering if you could recommend which product to use and how well it will hold up. I did see that you used it on your car but you didn't say if it was kept outside or not. have a terrific day!

  12. I am wondering whether or not these are dishwasher safe now that the vinyl is attached. Have you tried it?

  13. I agree with all the above comments, love the "green" of the whole thing! I love personalizing anything - have just personalized three different wedding gifts which the couples all appeared to like. And, with the DS and the Cricut, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to make such neat presents.
    MCF's Mimi

  14. What a fantastic project. I haven't tried vinyl yet, but when I'm done painting my walls I'd like to do some word art.

  15. Hi Lee,

    There are vinyl products made for outdoor use - if you are making a sign that will be constantly exposed to the elements that would be a better choice. I don't think they are removable without possible damage to the surface.

    I keep my car in a garage most of the time so it is fairly protected.

  16. Dayna,

    I haven't tried this in the dishwasher and I don't know if it would be safe. I probably would just hand wash the bottles.

  17. AWESOME project! And kudos to your city's council members ... disposable water bottles are ridiculously overused.

    I can't wait to try out your bottle decorating idea with my Nalgenes!

  18. way to go concord! i love to personalize items ans as i bring my two water bottles to class everyday, if i left one behind, everyone would know whose bottle it was and return it! great gift idea as well!


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