“When anybody asks, 'What are you writing about now?' if I try to reply, the book-in-the-works sounds so idiotic to me that I think, 'Why am I trying to write that puerile junk?' So now I give up; if I could talk about it, I wouldn't have to write it."
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet


Crocheted Lamp Transformation

Thursday, January 03, 2008

This year we decided to keep our Christmas gifts cheap inexpensive. We settled on approximately $10 per person. For the guys, there wasn't much we could do but search for a great deal at Wal-Mart. For the girls, however, I got a little creative. I went to the thrift shop and found a couple of "fix-up-able" objects for next to nothing and then...fixed them up. Here's one of them.

My sister-in-law's living room is navy blue and yellow. I haven't actually seen it put together since she lives in a city far away, but I did see her slipcover fabrics before she left, so I had an idea of what colors she would like.

I found a lamp, which I am sorry to say I did not take a picture of before I started. Before I got my hands on it, the base was dark green. I had decided on navy blue and white, so I spray painted the base white.
Isn't the swirly side thing cute? The spray paint covered perfectly. I just used what I had learned on Trading Spaces and swept from left to right, starting off (before) the surface of the lamp and ending off (past) it. The only thing I would have changed about this part is that I would have taped more than 4 inches of the cord. I ended up having to scrape a couple inches of paint off of it.

Next was the shade, which started out kind of a dirty white. I cleaned it up a bit and then started painting.
That acrylic paint in a bottle was only 50 cents, and the mini sponge roller worked great. Plus it's just darn cute!
As you can see, it took a few coats to really cover well, but it dried quickly so that wasn't a problem.

For the next few steps, I have less pictures than I would have liked. I got into crunch time and was completely focused on finishing rather than snapping photos.

At this point, I had been crocheting a cover out of white #10 cotton crochet thread. It took a little longer than I thought. I would have liked to pull out some parts and re-do them in order to get the shape just right, but I didn't have enough time.

When the crocheted cover was complete, I glued some navy blue satin ribbon around the top and bottom edges of the shade. Hot glue worked pretty well for this. The edges had paper tape over them, which if I had it to do over I think I would have removed. Also, I used 1/2 inch ribbon and I think I could have gone slightly wider to get better coverage over the metal frame.

Once that was done, all that was left was to fit the cover over the shade and glue it into place. Because I didn't take the time to really adjust as much as I should have, the cover got very tight toward the bottom. I started with fabric glue at the top, but once I got to the tight part, that was pretty useless since it didn't dry fast enough, and I'm not sure it would have been strong enough either. Hot glue, however, did the trick pretty nicely. I just glued around the bottom edge in 2-3 inch sections, and then stretched the cover into place and stuck it to the glue all around.

And here's the finished product.
The angle isn't perfect – I took this in a hurry – but you get the idea. For less than $10 and a little work, I was able to give my SIL a pretty cute little lamp for Christmas.

Next week, my Christmas project for my mother-in-law.

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