BottleHood, based in San Diego, is a small company doing big things with glass. Not just big, but also small beautiful. Whether the are bottles from yet another Grey Goose sponsored event or soda bottles collected at local restaurants, BottleHood gives both a second life to glass bottles as well as offering a livelihood to those who need a job and want to build their skill sets making some edgy items for the home.
What sets BottleHood apart is their emphasis on the 4th R, Repurpose. The company goes beyond reduce, reuse and recycle, just about anything made out of glass can become a BottleHood product. Old seltzer water bottles are turned into utility jars. Bottles of any brand of beer can become a gift set of repurposed glasses for dad on Father’s Day. And what cannot be reused or repurposed is then recycled into anything from sushi trays to large platters.
The genius of BottleHood is its little local supply chain. The company’s founder, Leslie Tiano, and her 20 employees rely on a cast of recyclers that the company calls, fittingly enough, “BottleHoods.” The BottleHoods are locals who collect bottles from bars and restaurants and in turn sell them to the company so they can get started on refashioning them into tumblers, candle holders or ashtrays. And to ensure a steady supply of beautiful materials, BottleHood cultivates relationships with local craft breweries that sell their product in some of the most stunning bottles on the market.
For now the store only has an online presence, at BottleHood.com and on Etsy. Bottlehood will consider custom orders, and its stock on hand changes weekly. Whether you are searching for a unique piece of jewelry or want to drink out of something genuinely handcrafted, BottleHood offers some really cool ideas for that housewarming party or better yet, yourself. Whether you have a brand fetish for 7-Up or want something with the Patron label on it, the chances are high that you will find something shic at Bottlehood. Best impulse buy right now? The Belvedere Vodka bangles, of course.
Leon Kaye, based in California, is a sustainability consultant and the editor of GreenGoPost.com. He also contributes to Guardian Sustainable Business and Inhabitat. You can follow him on Twitter. Photos courtesy BottleHood.