Upcycling an Old Glass Water Bottle

Trash to Treasure: Upcycling an Old Glass Water Bottle

Upcycling an Old Glass Water Bottle

When I found this 5 gallon water bottle I knew it was old because the marking in the glass on the bottom of the bottle read 72.  I found this meant it was made in 1972.   If I could clean it, I had the perfect place in the kitchen/dining area for it.

Upcycled Jug


The bottle had been outdoors for probably 30 of its 44 years, so my biggest challenge was to clean the inside of the bottle.   I started by filling the bottle with vinegar and water and letting it soak for 2 weeks.  That worked to remove the dirt, but the caked on grime inside just wouldn’t budge.  That’s when I added one cup of dry rice, one cup of vinegar and filled half the bottle with water.  My husband then shook the bottle for about 15 minutes to allow the rice to “scrub” the sides of the bottle.  (My husband had to do this because the bottle is very heavy empty and when filled with the water, vinegar and rice it was extremely heavy!)   The water/rice/vinegar combination worked and you can see from this picture, the scrubbing was a success!

How to Clean an Old Jug

After a final rinse with clean water, I air dried the bottle for about a week.  At this point, LED lights were ready to be placed in the bottle.


I did a bit of research and found that this bottle was made in Pepperell, MA and filled with natural spring water discovered over 100 years ago.  The Pepperell Water Company, which was owned by the Blood Family, only made three designs of glass bottles.  One design has a raised checkerboard on the side, then there was a plain bottle, and the third design is the one I have which is a pale blue with a raised circle on the side with Pepperell Natural Spring Water, Pepperell, MA printed inside the circle.  The water continues to flow from the natural spring and was so good that it won the coveted title of “Best Tasting Water in the World” at the 1901 World’s Fair.  The original building and well sit on 265 acres of conservation land now owned by the City of Pepperell. 

I love that I was able to save this beautiful glass bottle.  Knowing the history behind the bottle makes it even better.

Upcycling an Old Glass Water Bottle - DIY Inspired

How to Clean the Inside of a Glass Bottle

Similar Posts


      1. There is no battery pack, it plugs into the wall. It is on practically all the time and still working great! That’s why I prefer the plug ins over the batteries. 😀 -T

    1. I used electric LED lights for the water bottle because I leave it on quite a bit. But, with another DIY project, I transformed an old glass hurricane lamp that was missing the glass top. The new top is a glass vase. Inside the vase are battery operated LED lights. The cord is gold and the battery box is white so it isn’t noticeable. If you don’t want the cord hanging down the back, you can attach it at the bottle opening with fishing line. It will be undetectable and the on-off switch will be handy. Let me know how it comes out. Picture please! Thanks for writing. T

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.