Sunday, April 15, 2012

Aveda Bottle Cap Mural

I had the great pleasure of recently creating another bottle cap mural!
This time the mural was made for an Aveda store in Strongsville, Ohio.

Aveda is a beauty company that specializes in naturally derived ingredients.
They are committed to pursuing environmental sustainability and were
the first privately held company to sign the CERES Principles
(Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies).

Aveda is also the first beauty company that packages their products
in 100% post consumer polyethylene terephtalate (PET) plastic.

Aveda pioneered Aveda Caps Recycling when they found out that a
majority of plastic bottle caps aren't recycled, but instead end up in
landfills, rivers and oceans. Aveda collects caps from the public at
different store locations throughout the country. These caps are then
washed, ground up and formed into pellets that are molded into
new caps that are used on Aveda products. 

Each year, Aveda dedicates the month of April to raise money to
support clean water projects here in the U.S. and around the world.
Over the last five years, $16 million of funds have been raised.

To find out more about Aveda's Earth Month events, go to:

In an effort to support Aveda's Earth Month and to take part
in the Recycling Caps program, I created my latest mural.

I brought home boxes and boxes of caps from the Aveda store
in Strongsville and spent a few months collecting caps, taking
an hour or two at a time to sort and clean.

I knew I would need a lot of blue caps, so this is what I had the most of
when I began to assemble the actual mural.

Sometimes I feel like a little kid in a candy store when I sort and
organize my caps. I get so excited to find new colors and sizes,
especially really little caps. These discoveries tap into memories of playing
with my dollhouse as a child. I still love miniatures. You should hear me squeal!

Bottle caps sorted, cleaned and stored
in my little basement studio

Notice the wee-little cap on the left side, bottom row.
These caps come in so handy for tiny spaces that
need to be filled. I love them!
    Below is a photo of me sketching out the design on the board.
I came up with three designs for the mural. I knew I wanted
the design to depict water to represent Aveda's clean water projects.
 My first two sketches were a little too abstract (as seen below).
I decided on a more representational (although still abstract) design.

Me sketching out the design on the 2' x 8' board
Below is the mural in progress. I started off
hot-gluing the caps and then decided to skip
this step entirely and go right to screwing
the caps individually. I felt better knowing the
caps would stay intact while in transit.

Hot-gluing the caps
Screwing down the caps
Over 1,400 caps and screws were used to
create this mural. I include finishing
washers to maintain a sense of aesthetic.
I like the industrial look of the stainless steel.

Below is a photo of the finished mural on display at the
Aveda store in Strongsville, Ohio.


  1. This looks fantastic!! Are all the bottle caps from just what you've consumed/purchased? Did you have help collecting them?

    1. Hello Painting with Brains -

      Thanks for your feedback. I collected boxes and boxes of caps from the Aveda store where I installed the mural. This store is one of the Aveda locations in Ohio (1 out of 3) that participates in Aveda's Cap Recycling program.

      This part of creating the mural took the longest...stretched out over a few months of sorting caps for an hour or two at a time. Insane -but thoroughly enjoyable!

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you Sue! It is nice to hear from you!

  3. Beautiful! Good for Aveda and good for you! We miss you!

    1. Ahhh, thank you Paula - so nice to hear from you! This project was a lot of fun!

      I miss all of you too! We will be in your neck of the woods this summer - well - out west, that is. Maybe we should consider a side trip to Juneau? Wouldn't that be just plain awesome?!!

  4. This is just beautiful! What wonderful work! Congrats!

  5. Hey Paula -

    Thanks so much!! Glad you had a chance to take a look!! I just love doing this work! If you know of anyone that might be interested in obtaining a bottle cap mural, let me know! I am always searching for new venues...mostly commercial places. I have another mural hanging at the J. Glenn Smith Health Center in East Cleveland (check prior blog posts). I need to acquire another site to get working on the next one!

  6. Hello!
    This is fantastic. I work for EDF and also run a small non-profit organization,, in Queens, NY. I would love to display one of your murals at our upcoming outdoor event in park on the East River. As always , we'll be removing trash from the shoreline, and I'll be giving a workshop on "getting drastic with plastic - how to recycle what they won't pick up curbside" - and the Aveda caps program is one of the things I"ll highlight. Hope we can partner! Please contact me at

  7. Thanks Kathryn. I just sent you an e-mail at the address above. I hope we can partner too!


  8. Love it and happy to see that your creative spirit is thriving in Ohio. Happy Summer to you! ~ Lisa

  9. Oh, Lisa! How great to hear from you! Thanks for your support - truly appreciated! I am totally going to call you soon - good news to share!

  10. Thank you for documenting the progress. The mural is beautiful. The background to your blog is breathtakingly fresh, too.

  11. Rachel!! Hey - thanks for posting and joining my blog! I need to post again soon. The National Gallery of Art in D.C. was just so amazing and inspiring. I was in heaven! Pete and Joseph had to drag me out of there!! So - gorgeous works of art will most likely be the next blog post or two - or three!

  12. What a beautiful way to keep that nonbiodegradable plastic out of the environment!
    What did you use for the background board?
    Gail in Sarasota