Gold Dipped Lamp

Gold Dipped Lamp

Ever since we re-did our master bedroom last winter, I have been on the hunt for a different lamp for the bedside table. I am SO picky that I haven’t been able to find one that I like even though we have looked everywhere so I decided to just figure out how to make my own! After scouring the internet and reading a bunch of tutorials that only half explain what to do, didn’t explain things clear enough or had links to what you needed that led no where I was hesitant.   I talked to my dad to see if he had any advice and he said that the “kits” to make lamps sounded a little sketchy so I set off with my husband to the hardware store with the plan of just figuring it out. It took us a while but we finally got what we needed and we were able to transform a glass vase into the lamp about which I LOVE!! The vase was used for a wish tree at our wedding so I love that something that was a part of that day is now a piece in our bedroom. To give you an idea of how cool this DIY is, here’s what the lamp started out as:

Old Vase

Yes, that’s right, it was holding our spatulas next to the stove in our kitchen! You can literally turn anything into a lamp and I love that. The cool part about this one is it’s see through which is awesome with the gold wire and the gold leafing around the bottom is such a fun way to punch things up a bit. The lampshade was the biggest splurge of this project at $25, it cost more than the actual lamp part but isn’t that how it always goes? More details on everything you need and the lampshade coming in the DIY! You’ll also notice we have a new bedside table… a DIY on that coming soon too!

The first thing you’re going to need to do is pick a vase for your lamp vase. As I mentioned before, we already had this one which is from Joann’s {it’s 10″ tall and has a 6″ diameter}. You’ll need a hole in the base of the vase {which will now be the top of your lamp and a hole near the top of the vase {which will be the bottom of the lamp} for your wire to go through. If you use the same supplies we did, you’ll need a 3/8″ glass and tile drill bit to drill these two holes. You can find the one we used here.

The hole near the top of the vase is the one that can give you the most trouble {the glass is thinner there} so start with that one. Squirt some water onto the vase and start drilling a hole a couple inches from the top of the vase. Make sure that your drill is on low RPMs and that you go slow and don’t put too much pressure on the glass. It will take forever and the hole won’t be perfect, just keep it wet while you’re drilling and you’ll be fine! Once you’ve drilled that hole, drill a second hole in the middle of the base of your vase. Now it’s time to do the “gold dipped” part by gold flaking the top of the vase {which will be the bottom of the lamp}. Use painters tape to mark off the space you want to gold leaf, I used two pieces so that I could get a slight slanted look. To give the whole area a matte finish to work off of, I painted the whole area I was going to gold leaf with matte finished modge podge. I then used gold leaf flakes from Hobby Lobby {I can’t find them online}, to gold leaf the area. I painted a little section of more modge podge, carefully set a piece of the gold leafing on the wet glue and then used a soft-bristled paint brush to secure it flat. Once it was totally dry, I took a piece of silk cloth and rubbed it all over the gold leafing to knock off any loose gold flakes and shine up the surface. I then took the painters tape off and the base was all ready to go!

Prepping VaseNow you’re ready to start making your lamp. You’ll need a wire, we chose this gold one to match the gold leafing, and you’ll be putting the wire through the hole in the bottom of your lamp {from the outside, in}. Take the longest nipple in this set {they are silver in the picture but that product number was what we got and they were gold in color} and put it through the hole in the top of your lamp. Put one of these rubber o-rings on the nipple on the inside of the lamp and secure it with one of these couplers. Put another o-ring on the top of the nipple that’s sticking outside of the lamp and secure that with the other coupler. Screw on the bottom of the socket from this set. Thread the wire up through the nipple inside the lamp up through the socket bottom on the top. Follow the directions that come with the wire to make the little pretzel shape show in the picture below. Attach the ends of the wires to the corresponding screws in the socket set {follow the directions that come with it} and snap the socket top to the base. Set your lampshade on the socket {we got this Nate Berkus one because I loved the burlap outside and the gold inside} and add a lightbulb. This lampshade really blocks a lot of light, which we wanted as we use it as dim light for reading at night, but if you want more light I would suggest a different shade. You can see in the picture below what the lamp looks like lit up at night!

Building the Lamp

If you don’t feel like going through all the trouble of building your own lamp, buy this one and just gold leaf the bottom!

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