Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Lamp Makeover

Here's a funny story.  A couple of weeks ago we picked up this lamp for free at a yard sale.

It was kind of a sad lamp, but I thought with a little sprucing up it could be a great addition to our porch.  And it was FREE.   It would be a quick and fun project.

We spent much of last Saturday and Sunday scrubbing the porch free of mildew in preparation for next weekend's staining.  It was not a rewarding process.  We started out on with an eco-friendly solution and after lots of elbow grease, felt like we weren't getting anywhere.  So, we switched to OxyClean, per directions from This Old House, and scrubbed and rinsed and scrubbed and rinsed, and wound up with less mildew and fewer stains, but some over-bleached spots and worn wood- a very wet and splotchy looking porch.  And our porch furniture, which spent the weekend on the lawn, had accumulated a few bird droppings, which means in addition to staining, I'm adding cleaning of the cushions to the porch to-do list. 

Most people would call it a weekend and make a martini, but first I had to do something SATISFYING.  So, I decided to give the lamp its makeover.

I used my trusty oil rubbed bronze spray paint on the base, and thought I'd try covering the old shade with some manila rope I picked up at Home Depot.  I used Gorilla Glue and some clamps to hold the rope in place while I slowly worked my way around, applying a thin layer of glue, adhering the rope. 
And then I let it dry overnight. 

Yesterday, I put all the pieces together to photograph the new and improved lamp for its big reveal.  It looks pretty good, if I do say so myself.

Not bad, right?  But there's one problem.  (Yep, you guessed it.)  I screwed in a lightbulb and plugged it in... expectantly.  It doesn't work.  How could I not have tested it before going to all that trouble??  The women at the yard sale said it worked and I took their word for it.  I can't really complain because it was free and all, but I have learned my lesson: Quit and have a martini even if you're not satisfied with a job not-so-well done.  Oh, and see if the lamp works before you give it a makeover.  I suppose I'm going to look into how much it costs to have the lamp rewired now that it looks nice, which was probably the safe thing to do in the first place.


Judith said...

Man, Karen, how disappointing. That the lamp didn't work and that you didn't choose the martini.

The lamp sure does look fabulous, though. I love what you did with the lamp shade. Where did you pick up that idea?

Really enjoying your blog, my friend!

Tortla Dot said...

Love the lamp upgrade. All you need is a bitty backlight under the shade.

Sue said...

The lamp looks really great. I could be wrong, but I do believe it's an easy and inexpensive diy project to rewire a lamp. Good luck.