My 3 Monsters: DIY Chandelier Makeover

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3.03.2014

DIY Chandelier Makeover

From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com
When we bought our house it had a boring builder's grade pendant light over the dining room table.  There was nothing really wrong with it.  In fact, I liked it a lot better than the brass and glass "circus tent" lights you see in a lot of houses like ours, but I wanted a proper chandelier.  Nothing dripping in crystals -- just a nice, Pottery Barn-esque chandelier over my dining room table.  Rather than shell out hundreds of dollars for a new light fixture, I decided to give our perfectly good light fixture a little makeover.  I made a matching one for our kitchen while I was at it!


From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com

Even if you don't already have this pendant, you can still create this stylish chandelier for wayyyy less than you might think.  The fixture is available at several home improvement stores for about $60, but I bought the matching one for our kitchen on Craig's List for $10.  It comes in several different colors -- white, brushed nickle, brass, and a rusty-brown.  If you can't find one in the color you want {I had one white and one rusty-brown} just give it a coat of paint.  I chose to paint mine both matte white, but oil-rubbed bronze or a bright accent color would be beautiful, too.

What's great about this fixture is that the arms are screwed into the base rather than being welded on, so you can twist them to point upward instead of down.  That instantly made it look more modern!  The next thing I did was remove the  frosted glass shades.  It was super easy to unscrew the metal ring that was holding it in place and slide them right off.  Then I replaced the light bulbs with candelabra bulbs, which added to the chandelier effect.


From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com

With the glass shades removed, the light was a little glare-y, so that was the next problem to solve.  I always loved these woven seagrass shades from Ballard design, but $18 each was a little bit out of my price range.  I found a bunch of plain white clip-on chandelier shades at Goodwill one day for 50¢ each, so I used those to replace the glass ones.  To give them the same natural, beachy feel of the seagrass shades, I bought a big roll of 1/4-inch sisal rope at the home improvement store and carefully hot-glued it around each shade.


From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com
The rope is really rough and poke-y.  After making the first shade and getting pretty sore little fingertips, I ended up wearing gloves while gluing the rest of the shades.  Just start at the top and keep wrapping the rope and gluing, little by little, until you reach the bottom.  Try to get the layers of rope as close together as you can.  I found it helpful to put a short line of glue onto the shade, then lay the rope a little below the glue and slide it up against the previous row through the glue.  That way the rows of rope are not only stuck to the shade, but they are also stuck to each other for added reinforcement.  

At this point I thought I would be finished, but I hated how you could see the threaded base where the light bulb screws in:


From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com
To disguise that {and add some pattern and interest to the light fixture} I made little "candle covers" by cutting strips of paper and making small round cuffs that would slide over the light bulb and rest in the base, covering that ugly part.  I checked before putting them on and realized it gets slightly warm on that part.  To avoid a fire hazard, I just made my candle covers bigger so they fit loosely around it and don't actually touch the warm part at all.


From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com
I am absolutely thrilled with the way it turned out!  I love the beachy, nautical vibe it has with the black candle covers and sisal shades -- like you'd expect to see it in a cute little beach cottage or something.  It will be fun to change out the candle covers with the seasons and change the whole feel of the fixture. 

From builder-grade boring to beach cottage beautiful -- $9 DIY Chandelier Makeover at my3monsters.com
For only $9 {OK, $28 if you include the matching kitchen fixture} I have EXACTLY the look I wanted to begin with. With all that money I saved I can plank and paint the walls in there! {Right, honey?}


Have a great day, everyone!

Amy

I'll be linking this project up here:

1 comment:

  1. This is so pretty! That is awesome you were able to save your chandy and give it new life! I have a couple that I know I won't be able to do anything with I have racked my brain and sadly they will have to be replaced. :( I love how yours turned out!

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