Upcycled Whatchamacallit Lamp, diy



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If you’ve been keeping up with my posts, you’ll notice that I have a somewhat abnormal obsession with lamps.  Not just any lamps, but lamps made from junk.

It all started rather innocently enough, I was looking for a pair of lamps to put into my living room.  I couldn’t find anything that would fit my kind of eclectic, kind of vintagy, kind  of unique , kind of strange style…until one day, I stumbled upon an old wooden post sitting all alone in an antique store. It was perfect, a little chippy paint, kind of rotten on one end ( really wouldn’t call that part perfect), fat enough to make a sturdy base, tall enough that I could make two lamps… and so my first lamps were born.  Since then, I’ve made lamps out of a rusty car spring, a rusty pipe and old house shutters.

And so it should come as no big surprise that when I spied this rusty iron thingy laying in the woods, in what used to be a dump, my first thought was, this could be a lamp!

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It was kind of short and squatty, but it had  one characteristic that I look for in a lamp, it had a hole already through the middle. Since I have no idea what this thingy was used for in it’s previous life, it is definitely a whatchamacallit.

First problem was, how to get this future lamp base with potential, a little height.  Back to my woodpile, where I still had remnants of a Bradford Pear tree that had come down a couple of years ago. While Bradford Pear stinks as a long lasting tree, it makes a darn good lamp.

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The bark was easily knocked off since the log had been sitting around for a couple of years.

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The log was sawed in half so that one half could sit above my rusty iron thingy and the other half below.  The log was sanded, stained and varnished.  That all sounds so easy, but it did take a couple days of wrestling with my log.

Upcycled lamp, unique lighting, recycled lamp, handmade lamp, diy lamp, rust and wood lamp

Now back to my watchamacallit.  Since my iron was extremely rusty, even for me, I decided to use a copper patina paint technique on it.  The worst that could happen would be that I didn’t like it I would have to sand it back down to it’s beautiful rusty exterior.  Painted the entire piece in a bronze paint.  Then, with a combination of black, brown, bronze and teal used a stencil brush to just dab paint onto my iron thingy.

Upcycled lamp, unique lighting, recycled lamp, handmade lamp, diy lamp, rust and wood lamp

Upcycled lamp, unique lighting, recycled lamp, handmade lamp, diy lamp, rust and wood lamp

Sanded the entire piece allowing  for some of the natural rust as well as  a little of the metal to shine through.

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Time to make this thingy into a lamp. Drilled a hole through each side of my Bradford Pear log.

Upcycled lamp, unique lighting, recycled lamp, handmade lamp, diy lamp, rust and wood lamp

Checked for levelness and began to wire my lamp.  Full instructions for wiring a lamp can be found here.

Not knowing how to drill through the iron, the pieces were attached with builders adhesive.

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Upcycling at its finest, even a watchamacallit can become a lamp. 

Shared at Metamorphosis Monday , Show and Share, Wow us Wednesdays

Handmade Hangout Party , Catch as Catch Can , Funky Junk Party Junk

Sunday Showcase, Show me Saturday , DIY Showoff,

and Vintage Inspiration Party

5 Comments

  • technicolor says:

    A great place to start when wanting aged metal is using flat metal base spray paint. Available in gray or rust in spray paint department. I love the base paint to create from there. You did a great job, I’d love to have your lamp.. Time for me to try your idea out.

    • Joan says:

      I had the rust going big time, what I need is copper patina in a can. Have fun building your lamp. Once you get started it’s hard to stop.

  • Betsy says:

    I like your way of thinking!! What a perfect upcycled lamp and real one of a kind. Great job! Thanks so much for sharing at Vintage Inspiration Party.

  • I love how you added color to the metal pieces. Cool lamp!

    Thanks so much for the inspiration and for sharing on Show Me Saturday!
    ~ Ashley