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Bathroom Lighting Transformed (and the Incredible Power of Paint!!)

Last Updated on February 12, 2019 by Kristi Linauer

Happy Monday to you all! I hope all of you mothers had a wonderfully blessed Mother’s Day yesterday.

If you’ll remember, on Friday I shared with you the chandelier that I modified with a bit of stain and paint for Gwen’s bathroom. This weekend, I finished up the rest of the lighting. This is such an easy process, and really allows you to use very inexpensive lighting, and transform it into something that looks much more expensive and special.

Of course, for many of us, a nice brushed nickel finish would be just fine. However, for Gwen’s bathroom, brushed nickel simply wouldn’t work. Again, you can read more about that here.

So the goal…to turn a plain brushed nickel light fixture into an antiqued gold and silver light fixture.

Here’s what I started with:

First, I taped off all of the areas that I wanted to stay silver.

And then I painted the remaining exposed metal with gold spray paint. Scary, I know!!!

After that dried, I used a paint brush and applied stain to all of the gold areas.

I left the stain on for just two or three minutes (not long at all), and then used a rag to blot the stain. You can see the difference in this picture. The left side of the bar has been blotted, but the right side hasn’t yet been blotted.

After all of the gold was covered with stain and blotted, I removed the tape from the silver parts. I then lightly brushed some stain on the silver, and then rubbed it with my rag to create a softer effect than that on the gold parts. I wanted it to be much lighter on the silver, and also to settle in some of the crevices.

The last step in the aging/antiquing process is to use a toothbrush (preferably not the one you use on your teeth) 😀 and some black paint, and lightly splatter the light with small specks of black paint. If some larger drops got on the light, I simply used my rag and blotted them away.

After the light was dry, I gave it a quick spray with clear matte spray, and it was done!

I’m really incredibly pleased with how these turned out, and I think they’ll look great in Gwen’s bathroom!! They’ll be the “link” between the chrome/brass bathroom fixtures, and the aged fixtures that we’re adding to the bedroom.

Here’s another look at the difference that the aging/antiquing process makes. The top light is antiqued, while the bottom one has the spray painted gold finish and the original brushed nickel finish.

And another comparison of the paint alone vs. the antiquing.

And yet another…

I really love that last picture. You can really see how the stain settled in the crevices on the silver finial and gives it such a subtle and beautiful patina.

Isn’t it amazing what a little stain and paint can do?

These will be installed on Wednesday, and then this project will start winding down. I love it when a plan comes together so beautifully! And I’m anxious to share the full “before” and “after” of this project with you.

But before that can happen, I have some draperies, two valances, and a shower curtain to make! Yikes!!

I hope you have a wonderful day!

I’m linking this post to:

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Scientific Housewife
    May 10, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Great job! That is really neat 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 10, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    oh myh goodness…. you are sooo creative… so you do all the soft fabrication yourself too???

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 10, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    I think the lighting turned out beautifully! I am in awe of the creative part of you that came up with this idea as a solution to bringing together the chrome/brass bathroom and the antique finish in the bedroom, also, figuring out which parts to paint and which part to leave silver, then unifying it all with stain and spatter–just amazing–you are fearless, girl ! Blessings,

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating
    May 10, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Kim, in the past, I've done the soft furnishing that I can get to, but if I got behind, or had huge orders, then I have a local workroom that would do them for me.

    But I'm in the process of changing my business plan and the way that I handle clients' projects. With this new plan, I'm going to do everything for the room all by my little self. 🙂 I plan to share more about this business change in the next couple of weeks.

    Sindy, yes, we DIYers HAVE to be fearless!!! 😀 You're absolutely right…I'm not afraid to jump right in and try something. I just live with the idea that if I make a mistake, it can always be redone. That's how we learn! And trust me, I've made my share of mistakes.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Laurie - Little Blue Chairs
    May 10, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    looks great.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kristi's mom
    May 11, 2010 at 1:24 am

    Beautiful!!! You were busy while I was gone. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Allison @ House of Hepworths
    May 11, 2010 at 3:05 am

    Oh my gosh, I didn't even realize you could do that to a light fixture. I'm so super impressed. You did a fab job!!

    I'd love for you to share this at my party this Thursday!


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 11, 2010 at 3:11 am

    Stunning – who would've thought!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jan @ bobbypins boardwalk
    May 11, 2010 at 6:58 am

    Kristi, I was going through some older posts and saw that you had commented on several of my projects when I first started blogging. I wanted to check on you and find out more about you. This is the first time I've visited your blog. I would like to sign up to follow you, but don't see where to do that, so I'm going to follow in my reader through subscribing. I invite you to follow me, as well. It's nice to see your wonderful projects. This one is particularly striking. I also have a party every Wednesday, and invite you to participate anytime you have the opportunity to do so. It's called the Boardwalk Bragfest. It's nice to see that you're doing so well on your blog!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 20, 2010 at 10:03 pm

    You should do mine next! I enjoyed your photos. You took great shots especially up close of the details. I'm sure this was done with patience and precision. Nice entry!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa S.
    October 27, 2010 at 2:39 am

    What a great idea. Can you share the color of stain you used? I have a light fixture waiting! Thanks!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating
    October 27, 2010 at 3:23 am

    Lisa, I used Minwax stain in English Chestnut. I think you could use just about any dark stain. Special Walnut would also be nice.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    March 12, 2011 at 10:07 am

    The results a re very beautiful. Finishing for me is kinda hard. Well, I think all we ever need to come up with a result as beautiful as this is patience.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Shower Doors
    March 16, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Wow. Outrageous and really the hard work.
    And the dotted designs look like chocolate. Really amazing.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kristi's mom
    April 10, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Beautiful!!! You were busy while I was gone. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    April 12, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    I prefer the antique look personally…

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rk Oberoi
    April 18, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    grt post…thanks for sharing. I was looking the switched on lights at the end.

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 19, 2011 at 10:03 am

    Very nice blog with a lot of beautiful pictures.
    I love that Thank you. I need the same think for mine.
    Thank you


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    lighting styles
    June 10, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    yeah. bathroom lightings are the best to use in the bathrooms. if you dont have good lights in bathrooms then you cant find relaxation in your bath. i think bath is for relaxation of your body.. 🙂
    you can search on more on this website for bathing lights..

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jason Brown
    February 25, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    The design and color is great. Looks vintage. Hope to see the actual lighting from that fixture on how it looks like.