BottleHood: Tumblers Made From Used Beer Bottles

Stone Brewing Co.'s beer bottle tumblers by BottleHood
Available from the NeatoShop

Can you help save the environment, create local jobs and help stimulate the economy? Oh, and did I mention that beer is involved? Two San Diego folks did just that with an idea so simple it's genius: turn used beer, wine and liquor bottles into zany glassware and gorgeous vases.

While many of us recycle (Yay! Go us!), more than a billion bottles still end up in California landfills every year. That represents both a problem and an opportunity for artist and eco-activist Leslie Tiano and businessman Steve Cherry who teamed up to create BottleHood. They "rescue" beer, wine and liquor bottles from local restaurants, then wash, cut, grind, and polish them into tumblers, juice glasses, vases, and candle holders.

Stone IPA Beer Bottle Tumblers - $7.95 each

Tiffany and I met Leslie and Steve at the California Gift Show in Los Angeles recently and asked them a few questions:

Neatorama: These are great! How did you come up with the idea of "repurposing" beer bottles?

BottleHood (Steve): Leslie presented her first few product concepts from which we first started with vases and tumblers made from wine bottles. I didn't want to cut thin beer bottles glass if you can believe it!

Anyway, I thought of the process of repurposing glass based on lapidary techniques as opposed to heat based treatments to repurpose glass which create a huge carbon footprint in the process. My role was in the conception of the manufacturing and distribution strategy, being "neighborhood" based, very scalable and easily replicated geographically.

Neatorama: What's involved in making the tumblers and glasses? How long does it take to make each one by hand?

BottleHood: We treat the bottles as if they were a gemstone, like quartz, and cut, grind, sand, and polish the bottle turned glassware back to its original luster and finish. It takes about 20 minutes to make each tumbler.

Neatorama: What do the breweries and restaurants think of your idea?

BottleHood: Most breweries love what we do as it promotes their brand and it's a green socially conscious connection. Restaurants turn out to be both our bottle suppliers as well as our largest client segment. BottleHood is a sustainable business and to complete the "circle of sustainability" our suppliers turned clients offer the glassware back to the folks that drank the wine in the first place!

Neatorama: What's next for BottleHood?

BottleHood (Steve): We've got our eyes on lots of different neighborhoods, come see us at the SF Gift Show for more!

BottleHood (Leslie): There's a steady flow of ideas that comes from discarded bottles, so there will be new products in the very near future by BottleHood.

Arrogant Bastard Ale Beer Bottle Tumbler - $12.95 each

... and who can resist: the Double Bastard!

Double Bastard Ale Beer Bottle Tumbler - $16.95 each


I'm particularly taken by Leslie and Steve's line of glass tumblers made from beer bottles. They're SO awesome that we just have to collaborate with BottleHood to carry these beer bottle tumblers in the Neatorama Shop. Check it out - they'll make awesome Valentine's Day present for beer lovers everywhere: Link

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Hi Alex,

Thanks so much for posting this. I love reading stories about reuse and posting them on our website. And this beer bottle-cum-glass one is a perfect example. I love it!!

If you have more reuse examples (or if you've written more articles on them), I would love to hear about them and post to our FB page which will provide a global platform for idea exchange on reuse - e.g. how do we reuse CDs in Finland, or bicycle tires in Lesotho?

If you like our concept, you can find us on FB at

Thanks again for your article.

Warmest wishes,
Ian Moise
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Had a Flemming cutter in the early 70's. Used to cut the top off the bottles(beer and Wine and square tequila bottles) epoxy the tops onto the bottom of the bottles and make candles out of them. Recycled the wax from the trash cans of candle makers in South San Francisco. Then took my wares down to the San Jose swap meet and sell them. We all used to recycle at that time.
It's time for all you young eco-warriors to take over the movement.
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