Monday, January 28, 2013

How To Create A Lamp From Almost Anything

I have had several requests for a tutorial on creating a lamp.  You can create a lamp from cookie jars, mason jars, bird cages, teapots old books glued together and so many more things!

The latest lamp Mr. Comforts made for me was the old porch balustrade lamp for our master bedroom.

Here is what I started out with.

Here is how it was done.

You Will Need....
A Lamp Kit
Threaded Rod
Plastic Protectors
Lock Washer
Lock Nut
Drill Bit
Hack Saw
Painters Tape

Drill a 1 inch hole, 1/2 way through the base.  This creates an inset to be able to secure the rod with a lock nut and washer. (The four smaller holes are where the base was screwed and glued into  the balustrade.  Notice how they were counter sunk so the base will rest flatly on a surface.)

In the middle of that 1 inch hole, drill a hole all the way through the balustrade and base with a long 1/2 inch drill bit.  That hole is for the threaded 3/8 inch rod that you will be inserting.

Next, drill a hole in side of base to the center hole, for the cord.

Insert threaded rod into lamp, add washer, lock washer and nut to threaded rod at base, but do not tighten to much.  You will be cutting the threaded rod to height.  You need to measure where to cut.  To do this add spacer and base of socket to threaded rod.  Then add painters tape to mark the spot (see picture below).

Saw off excess threaded rod with a hack saw, file off burrs with metal file.  Tighten washer, lock washer and nut.

Thread cord through SIDE hole on base.

  Add a plastic protector to rod at base and another plastic spacer to rod at top of lamp.  This will protect the cord from fraying.

Slide the cord through the bottom of the rod until it comes out of the top of the rod.  Then add spacer.

Next add harp holder.

Next comes the base and socket.

Attach the wire to the socket following package instructions.  Pull any slack wire back through the bottom of the lamp base.  

Add socket cover and harp.

And you are finished!  What your lamp base is made of,  will determine the length and type of drill bit.  If you are drilling through  ceramic or glass you will need a diamond tip bit.

Now go make yourself a lamp!



  1. I just love your lamp and will give hubby the tutorial to turn a piece I want made into a lamp.

  2. I love your balustrade lamps, and this tutorial makes it look really easy. The fun part would be looking for great pieces to light up:>)

  3. Pinning this as a future project. This is a wonderful tutorial with each step so clear. Thank you, Mr. And Mrs. Comforts of Home!

  4. You make this seem so easy Penny. I might just get the courage to done one from scratch. I've rewired but never made a lamp from scratch. Thank your husband for me.

  5. A very nice tutorial! Love your assistant!

  6. Great tutorial. I like to use various objects for lamps, but have never done one myself. There is a shop here that does it. But perhaps I could talk my husband into making something in to a lamp. '-)

  7. Thank you for that tutorial! I love those teapot lamps. Maybe I'll try to make one...Mimi

  8. This is a great tutorial Penny. I love that lamp!

  9. Thanks for posting the tutorial Penny. I've often wondered how it is done. Not planning for any new lamps at the moment but you never know.


  10. Great tutorial, Penny! Thank your hubby for us! : ) These lamps look great. I can only imagine how much some place like Restoration Hardware would charge for something like this.

  11. I may just have to try that and your hubby make it look so easy!

  12. Goodness! Love that lamp! Thanks for the tutorial!

  13. Penny, you and I are so lucky. Rob is an engineer too, and just redid a lamp for me. I hate to think what all these great ideas I get would cost if I had to pay someone else for the labor to do them.

    I may be wrong, but I think Rob would tell you that the scariest words in the English language are, "Rob, I've been thinking ....!" :o)

    Love, Carol

  14. Thanks for the "how to"! Love the lamp.


  15. This is the BEST idea! I'm saving this to make... or should I say for Bobby to make!
    Please come by TUTORIALS TIPS AND TIDBITS.. and share it! It will be a great hit! Link goes live every Wednesday at 8:00 pm! Hope to see you and your wonderful tutorial!

  16. Beautiful job! I've always wondered how this was done!

  17. Thank you, I always wanted to know how people did this. You and your hubby make such a creative team.

  18. I have wanted to have one of these. I so need to borrow your hubby.

  19. Very clever - but ha! Way too complicated for me! Unfortunately, neither myself nor my husband are very handy. I'll just live vicariously through you. ;-)

  20. Wow! Amazing. Now I need my hubby to be more handy ;) Have a great week!

  21. Very interesting. I have a project of turning an enamel coffee pot into a lamp... I just can't find the right coffee pot at the right price! But I'm patient.

  22. Thanks for sharing this tutorial. I never knew the steps to make a lamp. I love that piece of wood that you used for your lamp!

  23. Beautiful lamp! I love lamps and make them myself so I always lke to see post like this! Have a lovely day, Jagoda

  24. That is a good looking lamp! Kudos to the handy man:)

  25. What a beautiful lamp and tutorial. So happy to have found you through Stone Gable and be following now...I'm from the Blue Ridge Mountains in NC too!

  26. What a GREAT tutorial, and I love the lamp! IF I needed a lampit would be fun to make one but I have too many lamps actually:) XO, Pinky

  27. Thank you for sharing such a nice tutorial. I could actually understand it.

  28. What a nice addition to your house this will be, Penny! I will need to purchase a really long drill bit for the piece I'm considering to make into a lamp. Not sure if they make them that length. LOL

  29. Found this via Pintrest. Love it! Where did you obtain your materials (including the balustrade)?