In a previous blog post, I discussed ways to integrate wine into wedding ceremonies and as personalized wine favors. This second post will discuss how to use wine in a non-consumption way: as part of your décor and as a guest book.
Using Wines (or Bottles) as Decor
While the use of old barrels and wooden wine boxes has become a fairly recognizable image for winery-based weddings on Pinterest, leftover bottles or labels can also be used in unique ways to add personal touches to a wedding.
For weddings that are outdoors, at wineries, or have long farm tables that can be used during the reception, using wine bottles at bud vases can add a classic look to your wedding décor. Integrated with candles and structured place settings can offer a very romantic feel to the entire event.
Some wineries may have left over, empty, and unlabeled wine bottles available for sale. Otherwise, removing labels from wine bottles can definitely be a challenge. After a lot of researching online, I finally decided that this was the best way to remove wine labels from bottles:
- Lay down aluminum foil on your oven rack. The rack should be somewhere in the middle of the oven. Then, preheat your oven to 350°
- Once the oven is preheated, place the wine bottle on the aluminum foil. Make sure multiple bottles are not touching each other. Allow the wine bottles to sit in the oven for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, carefully remove the wine bottle from the oven. You will need a pot holder to hold the bottle. Then, slowly (and carefully – the bottle is hot!) peel away the label.
- Allow the bottle to cool to room temperature.
- Once the bottle is fully cooled, use Goo-Gone to remove the adhesive from the bottles. It may take some scrubbing, but Goo-Gone works wonders. After the adhesive is off of the bottle, the bottle needs about 24 hours to settle and allow for the Goo-Gone to evaporate.
Removing labels this way also allows you to preserve the label in whole. Alternatively, the labels can be mounted or framed and used as table designations instead of using traditional numbers.
Note that this is also a great way to preserve a label, such as the wine used in your wedding ceremony or consumed during a special anniversary!
Wine as Guest Books
This is one of the most fun ways I could think to include wine for celebratory purposes: make the wine the guest book. With some metallic sharpies and a great bottle of wine, the sky is the limit!
Larger bottles like magnums, double magnums, and jeroboams make excellent bottles to sign and offer something impressive for guests to see. However, if you cannot get your hands on a magnum, consider purchasing a few different wines for guests to sign. One couple I previously worked with wanted a wine selection that they could open for each anniversary for the first five anniversaries. How cool! We found 5 different styles of wine that they both enjoyed and tagged them as year 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 – the designated anniversary in which it would be opened. Not only would the couple enjoy drinking the wine on their anniversary, but they’d also have some fun comments to read that were written on the bottle to remember their wedding day.
At other events, I’ve helped select one bottle of sparkling wine that can be opened in the first anniversary. It’s not necessary to pick sparkling wine for this, but I tend to love sparkling and think adding bubbly to any occasion designates celebration. At these events, about 30 people signed one regular-sized bottle of wine.
What is fun about this practice is that you don’t actually need a wedding to do this. You can add wine guest books to any celebratory event.
More to Come!
In a future blog post, I’ll divulge into the local wine selections for my wedding: what wines I picked, why I picked them, and how the wines were received by guests. Plus, I’ll reveal some useful secrets when it comes to picking your own wines for the toast, cocktail hour, or reception.
If you are currently planning a rehearsal dinner or your own wedding reception and are required to bring the wine, please consider my consultation for help. Inquire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a general note, I do not work specifically for any particular winery, and am an independent consultant. Therefore, I can help you make selections based off of a vendor’s/restaurant’s wine list, local choices that may not be well-known brands, related to a wedding/event theme, or general brands that are of particular value.