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DIY: bathmat made from wine corks

A couple of years ago, I bought a fancy teak mat to go in our master bathroom. I had heard that teak was a very durable type of wood and I really liked the way it gave the bathroom a warm, natural look. We were happy with it for about a year. I started to notice that overtime, the finish of the wood was flaking off and the entire mat was warping.  Eventually, it got so wobbly that when stepping on it while entering or exiting the shower, you had to really be careful not to lose your balance. Not an ideal situation for a klutz like me.

So I started looking for something new.  I really wanted to find something with texture or in a natural material, but something softer than wood. I found some cork bathmats online and while I loved the way they looked, I really didn’t want to spend $50 on another bathmat.

Then I stumbled upon a few creative bloggers who made their own bathmats using old wine corks. Genius!  

Courtesy of www.freshhomeideas.com

Courtesy of www.craftynest.com

I really liked the look of the second one, with the corks on their sides to show the vineyard. So I decided to give it a shot.

It helped that I happened to have a HUGE supply of wine corks on hand.

Now, hang on…before you start scheduling an intervention…let me reassure you that I’ve been collecting these corks for years. Promise.

I grabbed a pocket knife, my hot glue gun and some leftover shelf liner that I had measured and cut to the right size. Thinking this would be a quick afternoon project, I settled in on a Saturday and got to work. I quickly realized that cutting the corks was a bigger task that I expected…and a real pain. I could only cut a few at a time before my hands were sore and my knife was dull.

This is where Eric intervened and saved the day. Seeing me struggle (and hearing me complain, no doubt) he grabbed some scrap wood from the work shed and built a little wedge that I could use to hold the corks while I cut them. What a difference it made! I still had to sharpen my knife every so often, but I was actually making progress.

With all the corks cut, I outlined the perimeter of the shelf lining and then worked my way in, rearranging them here and there so they’d all fit. Then I broke out the hot glue gun and glued them all together.

Once I got into a rhythm, it went pretty quickly.

I absolutely LOVE the finished product!

The corks and the liner are absorbent, so I don’t have to worry about water collecting underneath. It’s actually very comfortable to stand on and the liner helps to keep it stuck to the bathroom floor, so it’s nice and stable. Since I’m quickly losing sight of my feet, I really appreciate that!

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