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The Deal: Ingenious seltzer bottle accessories
on sale at Russell Johnson Imports through Thursday

March 30, 2010 |  7:55 am

Fifteen years ago, on a trip to Buenos Aires, Russell Johnson encountered vintage seltzer bottles unlike any he'd ever seen. "It had a decorative tin sleeve to keep it from exploding if the bottle fell off a table," explains Johnson.

His friends in Los Angeles wanted to put them to use for cocktail-making. "I was not going to be responsible for pressurizing a 1930s Argentine seltzer bottle," says Johnson, the owner of Russell Johnson Imports, "but I thought if I could give them a function, how cool would that be?"

In fact, he gave them many functions. His first creation was the Pendant Seltzer lamp, as shown in his own kitchen above. The lamps, available with clear, blue and green glass, normally cost $395 apiece. But through Thursday, he is offering L.A. at Home readers a 25% discount. That brings the price down to just over $295.

DSC_0003 Bud VaseAfter cutting off the bottom of the seltzer bottles for the lamps, Johnson turned the remaining piece into a small dish that has many uses but truly shines as a candle votive. A set of three, normally $120, will be $90. 

Cutting off the neck of some bottles, Johnson created a pop-in-the-freezer ice bucket and wine chiller, right, that also doubles as a utensil holder. "People with stainless steel appliances really go for them," says Johnson. Already reduced from $185 to $135, during the sale they will cost $101.25.

Making the wine chillers left the resourceful Johnson with the sawed-off bottle necks. His solution was to pair the tops with the bottoms left over from the pendant lights to create a tagine-shaped vessel, bottom, that can be used as an incense burner or a bud vase (with only a small amount of water in the bottom half). These are marked down from $75 to $56.35.

The online store, which also sells vintage apothecary jars, refurbished 1950s telephones, Argentine leather rugs and one-of-a-kind finds, lists regular retail prices.

To get the 25% discount on the seltzer bottle pieces -- or everything else on the site that is in stock -- enter the discount code "DAISY" at checkout.

-- David A. Keeps

Photo credits, from top: Russell Johnson, Keaton Johnson, Keaton Johnson.

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