Why a bespoke wine rack makes the perfect Christmas gift and keepsake

Devon Oke Design cricket bat wine rack

Danny Oke converts unused wood and cricket bats into beautiful, bespoke wine and bottle racks - Credit: Devon Oke Design

Looking for unique Christmas gift ideas for friends and family? 

Having trained as a joiner and worked as a carpenter for many years, Danny Oke converts unused wood and cricket bats into beautiful, bespoke wine racks that make perfect gifts and statement pieces for the home. 

We chat to Danny, director of Devon Oke Design based in Torrington, about his designs and what makes them so special for customers.  

Q: Where did you get the idea for making bespoke wine and bottle racks? 

A: I’ve been working with wood ever since I left school. I've built the benches for most of the National Trust properties in the UK, so if you’ve visited one recently, it’s likely that you’ve sat on one of my designs! 

Handmade stiletto wine rack by Devon Oke Design

The stiletto wine rack is one of Danny's most popular designs - Credit: Devon Oke Design

During the course of building benches and tables, I came up with a new idea for reusing discarded wood that people would just throw away more often than not. This morphed into the idea of taking people’s old cricket bats that they’d had for a long time, and turning them into a great keepsake or gift for someone. 

All of the wine racks that I make are constructed from reclaimed wood, so they are extremely eco-friendly and sustainable products.  

Q: What are some of the unique wine racks that you’ve built for customers? 

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A: A lot of the products I make incorporate the interests and passions of the person that I’m creating the piece for, whether it’s a cricket bat or stiletto wine rack. Those are two of my most popular bases, although I can create pretty much anything that the customer wants from reused wood. 

Danny Oke cricket bat wine rack design

Danny's personalised designs make great Christmas gifts and keepsakes - Credit: Devon Oke Design

For example, I’ve made football boot wine racks for football clubs and rugby ball racks for rugby clubs, which make for brilliant souvenirs. I can do small or large sizes, the smaller holding three bottles and the larger holding five.  

Each of my designs are unique, and I’ve made everything from a seagull shaped rack to a wine glass-shaped base with resin – so that it looks like there’s wine in the glass. They can be as creative and unique as the customer desires. 

Q: In terms of designs, can people choose the images that go on the wine rack? 

A: Absolutely, there’s so much opportunity for people to relive their old memories of playing cricket, favourite pets or anything else they can think of. I’ve painted on images of people playing a game of cricket, one of their cats chasing a mouse, and even Diego Maradona for a pub that requested one of my bespoke wine racks. 

There’s a huge amount of scope for people to commemorate the things that are important in their lives, whether that be a specific event or person, or anything that they can think of. All they need to do is send in a photograph of what they would like and we can discuss the size and shape of the final piece. 

Q: Can these designs serve as functional pieces as well as commemorative? 

A: Certainly, and for many establishments including restaurants, cricket clubs and pubs, the intricate and bespoke design can really add to their atmosphere. The items that I produce have already been patented, so that customers are guaranteed to receive a unique product from the get-go.  

By adding their own personalised images and designs, they can turn discarded wooden objects into useful, unique wine racks that they are proud to display.  

For more information on Danny’s bespoke products, visit devonokedesign.co.uk or call 07961 898492.