February 20, 2012

One of My Bright Ideas

I've seen a lot of examples lately of old junk re-purposed into lighting, and have been wanting to try it out. Allow me to let you in on a little secret...it's not hard to do. You don't need to be an electrician to turn just about anything into a lamp or chandelier. You just need some tools, a lighting kit and, most importantly...a creative vision. I definitely have the tools, and lighting kits are pretty readily available both on the interwebs and in the big box stores like Lowe's and Home Depot. The creative vision? That's debatable. My friend-in-junk Heather dropped off this bad boy not too long ago, saying I could have it because she had no idea what to do with it. And, honestly, neither did I...at first. Then the light bulb came on (I couldn't resist...) and thought this could be a great pendant light hanging over a breakfast table, kitchen sink, bathroom vanity or what-have-you.

Do something with me, I dare you.
I love pieces like this, made back in the day when things were built for design AND function. After apocalypse, this thing will be left standing with the cockroaches, Keith Richards and Joan Rivers. It was a rusty top for something at one point (maybe an old wood stove?). Either way, it was getting an extreme lighting makeover, whether it wanted one or not. "MOVE. THAT. (very small) BUS!"

Mason jars...not just for iced tea and moonshine

Here it is, in all its rusty glory, complete with a mason jar bulb cover, because this is the South, after all, and the Duke boys would be proud of an homage to "white lightning." Hooch. Tennessee White Whiskey. Mountain Dew. C'mon people, it's moonshine. I'll cut you a break on not knowing nicknames for moonshine, but if you don't know who the Duke boys are, then we cannot be friends.

On the surface, this seems pretty easy to make, and if you thought that, you would be wrong. The concept is easy, but there was a little redneck engineering that went into connecting the dots. I'll spare you the details, but it involved some "retrofitting" to get the light socket and mason jar to attach to the center of the piece so it would hang correctly. The lighting kit was just under $15 at Home Depot, and comes with everything you need to shed a little light onto your project. You thought I was done with the lighting puns, didn't you?


  1. Do you think this would be easy to do with a metal colander?

  2. Absolutely, Edie! You have one in mind?

  3. Not really, but someone pinned one on Pinterest, but by the time I got to the link, the sale on Zuilily had ended. When I did a Google search, the ones I found were $100+. I'm going to keep my eyes peeled for a cool one. I may have to commission a project if I do!

  4. This is wonderful. If you suddenly find yours missing I confess it was me....I've been looking for the perfect piece to make a new kitchen light out of. This would be - except I need two.

  5. I LOVE this! I would absolutely be thrilled to have one like it in my mud or laundry room. Great job!!!

    1. P.S. Newest follower #25!! Am I a big ticket winner?! LOL