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Roses, Teal and Brass: How to Personalize A Lamp

Roses, Teal and Brass: How to Personalize A Lamp

Anthropology, eat your heart out.  You would sell the shade for $98. It cost me $2 to make. You would sell the base for, let’s say, a reasonable $118. It cost me $6 at a rummage sale. And, with my lamp shade, I get the pleasure of knowing that I made it.

Roses, Teal and Brass Lamp

This was one of those projects that I didn’t exactly plan out. I was bored one night, trying to figure out a good craft project that I could do while watching a movie. When you spend all day reading and doing econ homework, sometimes (often?) you just need something to watch and  a project that makes you remember that you can use your hands for things other than taking notes and punching dumb numbers into a scientific calculator.

Teal, aqua and white: the three little bears of color.

I find making things with my hands so unbelievably therapeutic. And, there are two benefits from making things with your hands: 1. The therapy part makes you feel better. And 2. You get the cutest little lamp to grace your bedside table for less than $10.

This brings me to my apology for the posting hiatus – school has been crazy busy lately. I managed to find the time to do the project, but not the time to post it. And I am still having broken camera drama. Sigh.

Anyway, Here’s how I did it:

I started with a boring plain lampshade that I got at a rummage sale for $2. It was just sitting in my craft room, waiting for me to fabulousize it. Yes, fabulousize is a word. Because I just made it one. Deal with it.

Boring before.

I had some white curtains that had stains on them, which I had gotten for free from craigslist. I tore 2 inch strips of that fabric to make the roses. Each rose strip was about 16″ long. Exact length doesn’t really matter, but generally, the longer the strip, the bigger the rose.

First thing I did (well, actually, it’s the first thing I should have done, but didn’t think about immediately, so had to go back and do it, which made it difficult) is to hot glue a strip of fabric around the top and bottom rim, so that the off-white fabric from the lamp didn’t show. I used the trim from the curtain, and the fabric covered both the inner and outer rim.

Glue the fabric around the rim, onto the inside. My gluing would have been smoother, but I kept burning the holy crap out of myself.

Next step, make the roses by rolling up the strips of fabric. I would roll five or six, securing them with pins. Then I would put the hot glue onto the lamp, remove the pins and carefully glue the flower down. NO SEWING INVOLVED.

Individual fabric rose, the back is secured with pins that I remove just before gluing.

Once all the roses had been glued on, I went through the piece with the glue gun looking for loose spots. I glued fabric layers to each other, in addition to just gluing the fabric to the lamp, to ensure that the roses would not lose their shape. And that’s how I made the lamp shade.

Onto the base: This is what the base looked like before:

Wood and brass lamp base.

It is made out of wood. I love the shape of the stacked balls. It’s so interesting, and I feel like it makes my lamp look dainty. The whole finished lamp actually reminds me of a topiary, with the bunch of roses at the top, and one single, but strong, trunk. It’s so Alice in the Wonderland or something. (In case you cannot tell, I am in L-O-V-E with this lamp).

Anyway, love confessions aside, I taped off the brass parts of the lamp base. I lightly sanded the wood because it was so smooth that I thought the paint wouldn’t stick. To ensure stickage, I primed her with Killz spray paint primer. This stuff is AWESOME and will make paint stick to pretty much anything.

Then I painted her Lagoon from Rustoleum, a color that I already had from a previous project. The color is lovely, but unfortunately, Rustoleum doesn’t have the great spray-tip technology that Krylon has, so their spray paint tends to drip. But I did a few very light coats, and had minimal drippage (there was a little drippage, but maybe that’s because I am impatient). Anyway, I LOVE how the brass and teal look together.

Teal and brass lamp base. Swoon.

Here is what she looks like all lit up:

And here’s another picture because she knows how to work it for the camera:

I get to look at her every night before I go to bed!

And one more shot, just because:

The aqua/teal on the bedstand goes perfectly with my aqua/teal bedding combo. I planned that.

That’s all for now folks. Let me know if you like her. Also, let me know what you like to do to blow off stress?


5 responses »

  1. Okay.. so I’m in love with your lamp 🙂 It’s so wonderful and you have inspired me sooo much now to get my own DIY on 😉

    I already like doing stuff myself, and I’ve thought about getting a new lamp for my room but haven’t found anything I liked. I now realize – I can just Make it into something I like!

    Was just surfin wordpress and didn’t expect to find anything special, but I did – thank you! 😀

    Have an awesome day,

  2. I absolutely LOVE this!!! I can’t wait to make one myself!!!


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