DIYdiy projectskate pruitt

diy project: mailing tube wine rack

by Kate Pruitt

i have a really bad habit of procrastination. the laziness usually extends to all home projects, but none worse than framing artwork; i just can’t seem to get myself through the process of getting things framed, or even buying pre-made frames, and as a result i have a lot of rolled up posters and prints around the house. i know, it’s sad. there’s light at the end of the tunnel however: mailing tubes are such an awesome material to hack into something useful that i couldn’t resist unfurling a print and using its packaging for this week’s project. now, not only do i have a pretty new wine rack, but i have a print flattening on the floor of my studio, demanding to be framed post-haste. way to go, me!

i wanted to combine a raw material with a neon color, but i must admit i was skeptical about the look of bare cardboard, felt and neon duct tape (side note: duct tape varieties are officially off the hook! so many colors! camo! tie- dye! neon! you simply must buy some and play with it).  however, the modern, industrial look is actually quite a nice departure from the fancy (and stuffy) nature of most traditional wood wine racks. if this look isn’t your thing, you can cover the entire frame of this piece with felt or any kind of fabric. the mailing tube is quite sturdy and this can be sized up or down.  i encourage you to play around with different styles; after all, the rack cost less to make than one of the bottles of wine it holds (and i buy cheap wine). have fun!! –kate

CLICK HERE for the full how-to after the jump!


– mailing tube (make sure it’s a sturdy one, made of about 1/8″ thick cardboard and 24″ long)
– hot glue gun
– neon/colored duct tape (so many color available now! very exciting)
– scissors
– scrap of felt (at least 12″ x 20″)
– exacto/utility blade
– box cutter
– cutting mat
– pen and ruler
– spray adhesive


1. You will be cutting the tube in half lengthwise. Measure the circumference of your tube using a string/shoelace and the ruler. Mark a straight line that runs the length of the tube, then make another lengthwise line that starts halfway around the circumference of the mailing tube.

2. Use your ruler and exacto or craft utility knife to make a cut along the first line you drew. Press firmly and run it a couple times. It will not cut the tube, but it makes a nice guide groove for the box cutter. Repeat on the other line.

3. Use the box cutter to finish making the cut, slicing the tube down the length. You will have to press firmly and run it several times. Be patient, and exact! Repeat on the other side. Now you have two halves of a mailing tube.

4. Mark a line halfway across the length of each mailing tube half. Repeat steps 3 and 4, cutting the mailing tube halves in half again. Now you should have four curved pieces that measure about 12″ long.

5. Heat up your glue gun and position your curved pieces in a row. I chose to do only three because I don’t have room for more in my kitchen. Run a line of glue along the top outer rim of one of the curved pieces, and press the adjacent curved piece against it so the tip rims are flush. Do this on a table surface and press them down to the table to ensure your wine holder will sit flat. Repeat with the other pieces until all your curved pieces are connected.

6. Cut lengths of tape that match the length of the top edges of your wine holder (about 12″). Position them over the center of the top rim, fold them over the top rim and press them against the wides. For the front and back curves, cut a piece of tape to match the length of the curve, press it halfway onto the curve with half of the tape sticking off the surface. Make several slits in the extra overhanging tape with your exacto knife, then fold the under to the bottom side of the tube. Continue to put tape on all outer edges.

7. If you like the bare look of this wine holder, you are done! If you’d like to add the felt lining, cut the felt to the exact depth of the wine rack, and fold it down into the holder to see how much felt you need to cover the entire top.

8. Cut the felt down to size, coat the underside with a layer of spray adhesive, and adhere the felt to one side of the wine rack. Continue to pull the felt tight and press down into the rack’s curves, smoothing out any wrinkles with your fingers. This glue is pretty forgiving, so you can pull the felt up and try again if you are uneven. Use your exacto to trim any excess once the felt is in place. You can add extra tape or felt to the underside of the wine rack if you wish, or leave it uncovered.

note: I have attached a photo of the wine rack without the felt lining to show you what it looks like, in case you prefer the bare bones style.

Also, if you wish to size the wine rack up vertically, you can use two more mailing tubes. Simply cut the tubes in half without slicing the tube open. Decorate these tubes with matching tape and glue in a row. Then stack the open rack on top of cylindrical tube rack and glue this rack down to secure.

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