Monday, April 4, 2011

Light Fixture Refurbish

My grandpa is an avid garage saler and known for bringing family members surprise "gifts" that he thinks we'll like.  Fortunately I LOVE this about him because I am a big fan of all things old and beat-up.  At the shower this weekend he dropped off this interesting salvage from my aunt's old house:

It was outdated, dusty, and a little more Indian themed then my taste prefers... but I saw some potential here.  Little did my grandpa know, I had been looking for an old light fixture that I could refurbish into a candle chandelier for our back porch.  The glass panels and open top meant this fixture would be perfect for just such a thing!

I started by taking the whole thing apart.  I needed to remove all the electrical components so I could replace the white tubes with candles!  I also took out the black glass panels since I wanted to replace them with clear glass.

Here's what I found inside the base of the fixture:

The wires ran up the white tubes to each bulb as well as up through the center of the fixture to the would-be ceiling wires.  A few snips with a pair of garden cutters (shears?) and it all pulled free.

This is how it looked laid out:

The little black cups towards the right used to hold the white tubes on the left.  I decided I would reused the black cups to hold candles just like they did the white tubes.

It turned out real candles were a little wobbly in the black cups so I needed to find something to help hold the candles securely.  I also needed some new bolts to reattach everything because the old ones weren't going to work.

Me: "Kevin?  You want to go with me to the hardware store?"

Kevin: Groan

So off to the hardware store we went :-)  Here's what I got:

Washers, bolts and some chair tips.

Turns out the chair tips fit PERFECTLY into the black cups:

So now that my candles were sure to be snug, I put everything back together.

And as soon as it got dark I decided to give it a try!

I didn't have the new glass in yet, so the flames blew out whenever a big gust of wind came.  But it sure provided a good amount of light when lit!

I can't decide whether I want to use it as a hanging light like I originally intended or as a table-top lantern...  What do you think?

The shadows it threw on the ground were very pretty.

Thanks Grandpa!

I'm linking up to the following:                                                                                           This post was featured on the following:

Since I'm trying to spread the word about my blog I've chosen to link up to a LOT of parties... I'm guessing in doing so I may have unintentionally made some errors in my links.  Let me know if you find any such errors or if I forgot to add your link altogether!


  1. I just found your blog and am your newest follower. This project is brilliant (yes, thanks to gramps!). Thanks for creating such a fab blog full of inspiration.

  2. Cool light fixture! Maybe you could hang it on a chain and hook, that way you could take it off and use it for a lantern when you want? Either way I think it's fabulous!

  3. Brandy: I'm so glad you enjoyed my post!

    Rachelle: Great idea! That will also make it easy to take the lamp down when I need to replace the candles :-)

  4. That's beautiful! (Just found your blog thru Linda J - my friend and the mother of my dear d-i-l Jori!)

    Gracie's Cottage

  5. Fantastic find by Grandpa and perfect re-purpose by you. What a great team! I bet he was happy with your happiness too.

  6. It looks great all lit up--love that your grandpa brings you goodies--so sweet. Thanks for linking to Share the Love Wednesday!

  7. It turned out great. Hanging or tabled top, it all works. It would sure be easier to change the candles if you left it down. Live with it down for a while until you're inspired to hang it.

  8. Hi! Saw your link at Fishtail Cottage. I love what you did to the lantern. I think I would like it on a table top. It looks beautiful.

  9. It's actually a very neat looking lantern. That style is quite popular today. I'm sure Grandpa got a big hug for that little present. ;)

    Thanks for linking to my party. I would love to have you join me each week.

    By the way, I just joined you as a follower.

    Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage

  10. That is a really cool light!

  11. Absolutely amazing what you did with that old light fixture. It is very pretty and looks so nice. I hate to say it, but dad was an avid "trash pile" visitor. But he would come home with some rather nice things at times.

  12. It turned out beautifully. Well done. ♥O

  13. Hi there! :) Thanks so much for linking up to my Treasures and Trinkets party, I'm so glad to have you! Your light fixture, turned candlier turned out amazing! It's just lovely!
    Thanks again for linking up!

  14. Hi, I just found you at Mary's Share The Love Wednesday..I wish I still had my Grandpa..I bet yours is so happy you truly loved his gift. A treasure from him forever...Tell him we all think he ROCKS!!!
    Happy Spring...

  15. So beautiful! I have an old lantern I want to try that--thank you for sharing.

  16. Wow..Look how pretty that turned out!

  17. So beautiful! Looks so turkish, I love it.
    And I really love your blog. The whole layout and pictures are great.
    Stopped over from FTLOB :)

  18. What a lovely result Cool Grandpa! Hoping your weekend is a happy one. Hugs, Katherine

  19. So fun, I really love the romance of it! Thanks so much to linking up to Beyond The Picket Fence.

  20. Hi there~ Wow this is a great project! I love the light to begin with, but how creative of you to make it into a candle lamp. It's really charming! Way to go Grandpa!!! Thanks for coming by and sharing at FNF! :)

  21. Wow!! wow!! this is a gorgeous project.. I love how the lamp looks.. so pretty!! wow!

    You've got a lovely blog.. Hope to see you at Colours Dekor sometimes.. :-)

  22. Wonderful job..and you used your head to come up with that idea! Thanks so much for joining me for Pearls and Lace Thursday. I love your blog!
    Blessings, Doni

  23. What an impressive light revamp! Thanks for stopping by and linking up with So Sweet Sundays! I'm your newest follower and hope you'll stop back and become a follower, as well! :)

  24. Very pretty! It looks lovely!
    Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!

  25. Wow what an incredible fixture! I just love what you did with it. The candles are always a perfect touch. Romantic and soft... I love them. I would love to see this linked up to my VIP party tonight if you have time. Otherwise it runs every Friday through the weekend =) Hope to see you there!

  26. Wow, you are amazing! That light is so pretty! Thanks for sharing your talent at Fantastic Friday.

  27. Seriously? SOOOOO cool! I'm totally inspired tofind a few old lights! Thanks for linking-

  28. wow, you did it all by yourself, you have done a fabulous job, it means i can redo my old lights and make them look as good!!

    Affordable Swiss Hotels

  29. Table top lantern! This is so cool!

    Thanks for linking to Creative Juice! Hope to see you back this week

  30. Wow. thisa is gorgeous. great job. Thanks so much for sharing and linking up to the handmade hog

    xoxo Hanna

  31. Hi! I just wanted to let you know I've featured your light at my party this week! Please stop by to grab a button when you get a chance =)

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