Lighting Upcycle: Painting an Old Lamp

I’ve been looking for a lamp to put in the girls’ room, but not too hard–I just figured I would eventually come across something. Unfortunately their dad came across something first.

ImageJesse brought this beauty home from a client of his who insisted he have it. He was super proud of his free find, and I let him be, even if my eyes were bleeding a little bit. My motto is that there usually isn’t anything a layer of paint can’t fix, so I got to work fixing it up.

Step 1: Wash It


After I washed it with a warm washcloth and dishsoap, I was able to make out the fine details of the face that will be haunting my children’s dreams. Honestly, I’m a huge fan of weird stuff, and I figure since they’re only a five-year-old and a one-year-old, they’re still impressionable enough to respect my opinion. So, I’ll be describing their lamp as “unique.”

Step 2: Paint It


I did one rather sloppy layer in a light pink shade that I got from the “free paint” table at work. I’m lucky to have a free paint table at my work, and if you don’t I’d suggest sticking with spray paint because it’s affordable and easy to maneuver. Also, even if you do have a free paint table at work, or free anything, you shouldn’t bring things home from it as often as I do if you live in an apartment. I’ve been waiting to use this paint since May. I chose the sponge paint brush because it was the only thing I could find in my “random painting utensils” box. It ended up working well for the “unique” gargoyle creatures.

Step 3: Paint It Again


I did two more layers with about half an hour in between each. Usually I would recommend a longer wait, but it’s been pretty brisk outside so it was quick to dry.

Step 4: Buy a New Lampshade


I bought a new lampshade for $13 at Wal-Mart. I picked something smaller and patterned to give the lamp a more modern vibe. There are still some imperfections, but I’m pretty happy with the final product. I’ve never seen such a lady like gargoyle lamp.


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