Champagne is For Drinking... & Making Adorable Mini-Chairs

What do you do with the completely absurd amount of corks you have saved from the wine-coated memories of your past? Pinterest has DIY projects for those retired corks- from picture frames to wedding table card holders and Christmas ornaments to actual cork boards. Suddenly, the little gems are so much more than a tally of the bottles you've consumed. 

But maybe a cork doormat just isn't your thing. We get it. What about a mini champagne chair made from the cork instead? We could get on board with that. 

Design Within Reach, a furniture store that "exists to make authentic modern design accessible," has jumped on the recycled cork DIY train with their annual 13-year-old Champagne Chair Contest

The 2017 contest boasted over 500 entries in two categories: Most Original and Best Likeness. Using only the foil, label, cage and cork from no more than two champagne bottles, contestants created everything from your grandmother's front porch rocking chair to Paul Frankl design lookalikes.  

How does one win the Champagne Chair Contest? The top 20 entries are set apart from the rest through a popular vote. From there, a panel of design experts chooses a first, second, and third place in the Most Original category and a first place for Best Likeness. Judges included PJ Mattan, of Studio Mattan in New York, Tucker Viemeister, head of Viemeister Industries in New York, and Elish Warlop, an architect and industrial designer. 

Using tools meant for life-sized chairs, winners Robert Metzger, Isabela Sá, John Reyno, and Erin Lew admit there were more challenges than expected when making the adorable chairs. Whether it was removing the foil of the label without tearing it or keeping the legs of the chair straight under the weight of the cork, the mini chairs proved to have mega challenges. But once completed, we're certain the chairs are straight from our tasting room dreams! 

#dwrchampagnechair Split chair

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My submission for the #dwrchampagnechair contest!! 🥂🍾 @wentworthinstitute @idatwit_ @designwithinreach

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#dwrchampagnechair #2017

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