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Patriotic Summer DIY Ice Buckets

Have you wondered how-to make a DIY ice bucket? 4th of July and Summer parties are perfect for these patriotic wine and alcohol ice chillers!

iy ice buckets 4th of july red white and blue_on the front porch

How-to Make a DIY Patriotic Ice Bucket

To be honest, this was my first Pinterest FAIL! Wow, I tried so many versions to perfect the art of the ice bucket.  If you think I get it right the first time, well I don’t.  However, when I want to figure out how to do something = I get really stubborn 😉 Rest assured that what I’m sharing was after testing 5 different methods. So let’s review what NOT to do:

  • Don’t ever use glass anything when making a DIY ice bucket.  I tried that for the outer layer and if it didn’t break in the freezer it broken when I tried to remove it.
  • Don’t run water over the ice bucket, before it has time to melt a bit at room temperature. Ice cracks and breaks when an extreme temperature change happens.
  • Don’t force the ice bucket out of the plastic because it can break like glass.
  • Don’t try to cut away the outer bottle – it’s impossible and creates sharp edges.
  • Freeze the bottle of alcohol you will be using for your party because it may get frozen into the ice bucket.

Trust me I am saving you a lot of heartache by warning you before you get started!

Pin it for later!

Easy DIY Ice Bucket for the Summer and 4th of July

Supplies

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To keep this DIY project super cheap, find 1 and 2 liter bottles that are filled with the least expensive thing. I bought seltzer bottles.

  1. Peel off the label and clean the label glue residue.  I didn’t worry about removing it on the 2 liter, since it will be discarded.
  2. Cut about 3 to 4 inched off the top of each bottle.
  3. Cut and extra inch off of the 1 liter bottle to make it shorter than the 2 liter bottle.

instructions for how to make a diy ice bucket

Use a FULL bottle of alcohol that won’t freeze (like vodka) to weight down the 1 liter bottle. Fill with water to just below the 1 liter bottle inside the 2 liter bottle.

For the fruit and flower version:
  • Cut the stems of the daisies so you only have flower heads.
  • Push the fruit and flowers down between the walls of the liter bottles.
  • Make sure to keep the 1 liter bottle centered by pushing the fruit down on all sides.
  • Place a full bottle of alcohol to weight down the 1 liter bottle.
  • Fill with water to just below the 1 liter bottle inside the 2 liter bottle.

Note the level of Tito’s vodka in the first picture and the next.  This drove me to drink! Ha, ha, ha…really.

Daisies cranberries and blue berries in water

Freeze OVERNIGHT

freeze diy ice bucket overnight

Serving the DIY Ice Bucket

OK, this is where I had to perfect the art of removal! This part is EXTREMELY important. Do this the day or hours BEFORE your event or party.

  1. Remove the ice buckets from the freezer.
  2. Let them sit at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes.
  3. You want the outer layer of the ice bucket to go back to a liquid.
  4. Gently, pull the 2 liter bottle away from the ice and inner 1 liter bottle. This is a little messy 🙂
  5. Leave the 1 liter bottle inside to hold the structure and obviously the flag version is decorative, so you need it!
  6. Put BACK in the FREEZER immediately.

Let refreeze and pull out right before you are ready to use the ice bucket. I did find that the fruit version expanded so much that I couldn’t get the vodka bottle removed. SO make sure you freeze the alcohol you want to use for your party! I didn’t have this issue with the flag version.

  • Make sure to place on a plate or saucer, to catch the melting ice as it thaws during the party!
  • IF YOU WANT TO, you can always leave the outer bottle to catch the melting ice.  Just make sure to clean off the 2 liter bottle label really well.  You will lose a little color and dimension by keeping the bottle intact.

diy ice bucket_4th of july_red white and blue_fruit and flowers diy ice bucket_4th of july_patriotic_red white and blue_american flag

So there you have it! I hope I save you time, trouble, and effort so your first DIY ice bucket is perfect. It’s such a festive way to bring a theme or holiday to life.  Just make sure to use slices  or small pieces of fruit, but you can also use:

  • Greens
  • Flowers
  • Monograms
  • Patches

Anything that can stick to the bottle or push between the two bottles can be used to make a unique design!

diy ice bucket_american flag_4th of july_red white and blue

Happy 4th of July…I’ll be enjoying a cold beverage on the porch.

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Until next time…

Porch Daydreamer

Tracey

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6 Comments

  1. I think, for the outer vessel, I will look for some containers with flat bottoms, it will probably mean that I will have to eat my way thru a large cantainer of candy, like Twizzlers. Good thing I am willing to make the sacrifice, because I don’t have very good luck with these contoured bottle bottoms. Yours look fabulous and I will be stealing the flag idea. After the booze is gone you can drop a tea light in to float on the melted ice.

  2. Tracy, I’ve seen these before and they are so cute. Just wondering why you just can’t leave the outer 2-liter bottle on the outside. That way when the ice starts melting, it wouldn’t make a mess. What do you think?

    1. You could, but it looks SO much better without the cover. That’s why I tried a glass outer first to contain the mess. Inside, they stay decent for a while. Try and let me know 🙂

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