My herringbone table lamps are finished!
If you missed it, you can click here for Part 1 of this project, where I showed how I made the boxes for the lamp bases, and then how I made the herringbone pattern out of watercolor paper painted with acrylic paints to coordinate with my room.
When I left you on Monday, I had two sides of one lamp base finished, and it looked like this…
So I finished up the herringbone design on the other two sides, and then did all four sides of the second lamp base.
And because inquiring minds wanted to know, I timed myself, and applying the herringbone design took about 40 minutes per side. That doesn’t include the time it took to cut all of the pieces.
That time could have been easily cut in half if I could find an adhesive that doesn’t require constant watching and pressing down until it’s pretty much dry. Mod Podge causes the paper to initially curl, so I’d put on a couple of pieces, and then go back to all of the pieces I already attached, and press them down. This was such a time wasting activity. If any of you know of an adhesive that works well with thick paper that sticks immediately and doesn’t require this constant attention until it’s dry, I’d love to know about it!!
When the Mod Podge was completely dry, I sprayed the bases with Triple Thick Glaze from Rust-Oleum.
This stuff is amazing!!! The finish was very hard to photograph, but in person they have a really shiny, glossy finish. You can kind of see the shine here…
When they were dry, I was ready to wire them and turn these boxes into actual lamps. For this, I purchased one 3-way socket kit, a package of 1/8-IP nuts and washers, and a package of two 3-inch 1/8-IP threaded nipples.
I started by drilling a 3/8-inch hole right in the center of the top of the base.
Next I threaded a nut and washer onto a threaded nipple. (Note: The nut isn’t threaded down far enough in this picture. It needs to be about 1.25 inches down.)
Then I turned the lamp base over so that I could reach inside the base, and threaded the nipple up through the hole as far as I could until the washer was resting on the inside of top of the lamp base.
And on top, I added the pieces from the lamp kit — nut, neck, harp base, and light socket cap. All of those pieces just screwed together.
Then I had to choose which side of my lamp base would be the front, and which would be the back. On the back, I drilled a 1/4-inch hole in the center about 1/2-inch from the bottom. Then I ran the cord through the hole to the inside of the lamp base.
And then I ran the wire up through the nipple, and through all of the pieces on the top of the base. Once the wire was threaded all the way out the top, I tied an underwriter’s knot in the wire.
I removed the metal cover from the socket to expose the two screws. Then I attached the ribbed wire to the silver screw, and the smooth wire to the gold screw, and tightened both screws so that the wires were secure.
And finally, I slid the metal cover over the socket…
…and snapped it into place on the socket base.
Then it was ready for a harp, light bulb, and lamp shade!
I bought the shades at Lowe’s for about $25 each. It was more than I had intended to spend on lamp shades, but rectangular shades are harder to find, and cost more than plain round shades.
I really love how they turned out, and Matt says that these lamps are his favorite things I’ve ever made. He just kept looking at them yesterday and saying, “Wow! I can’t believe you made those.”
I placed one of the lamps on the green credenza to snap the photos above, just because the console table wall in the entryway is still so incomplete and ugly. The bland paint on the walls, along with the lack of baseboards, is very distracting.
But because I know at least a couple of you will ask, here’s a peek of what they look like on the console table.
The table is 64 inches wide (four inches wider than I am tall :-D) so it’s definitely wide enough to accommodate two lamps. Now I just need to find or make something really spectacular to fill that big expanse of wall above the table. I have some ideas rolling around in my head, but I haven’t settled on one particular idea just yet.
Of course, first I need to paint and install baseboards. I’ve kind of gotten ahead of myself here.
Here’s how the cost breaks down for these two lamps:
- MDF: on hand (scraps from the console table)
- Watercolor paper: on hand
- Acrylic paints: $10
- Lamp kits: $24 ($12 each)
- Lamp shades: $50 ($25 each)
- Extra lamp parts: $6
- TOTAL: $90 for two lamps
Not too bad, right? Especially considering that the lamp I used as my inspiration for this project was $345.00!