Thursday, January 6, 2011

One Man's Trash...

So I've never really considered myself particularly crafty or handy. But lately I've been reading lots of house decorating/renovating/updating blogs, and I think I've been bitten by the DIY bug. I've got a whole slew of ideas that I'm ready to try out. Armed with my paintbrush, I've got big plans. Here's why I think it might be time for me to embrace my supressed inner DIY diva:

1. I'm moving to a town where I know a whopping total of 2 people. I'm gonna need a hobby.

2. Once we move, I will no longer be "working." (Aside from that whole homeschooling/parenting gig). Again, I might need a hobby.

3. I'm moving into an ugly house. It's a great house, but it's ugly. This has to be remedied as soon as possible.

4. In order to continue living up to my reputation for being (as my mother-in-law so graciously put it) a tightwad, I'm going to need to learn to do a few things for myself. Why pay someone $300 to do something I can figure out for $30? I've got lots of projects coming. I need to pinch some pennies!

So I decided I should start small, and see if I could successfully repurpose some old junk into new treasure.

I'm a garage sale addict, and am going through a bit of withdrawal during these cold months where I don't have access to garage sales. I decided I should start poking around our local Savlation Army and Goodwill stores. They're constantly getting new "treasures," and I need some more stuff for our next house (yeah right).

A few weeks ago, I noticed a nasty old lamp, and had a good laugh over how unbelievably ugly the shade was. It reminded me of a horrible 80's prom dress, all ruffles and lace and way too much going on. Yikes.

But, the lamp was a measly 5 bucks, and I though the base had potential.

On a side note, I bought this lamp shortly before Christmas. Since I only wanted it for the base, I decided to wrap up the shade and "gift" it to someone at a White Elephant Christmas party. The horrified look on my friend Mike's face when he opened it was worth way more than $5! I even got awarded the best gift award at the party!

So to start my DIY project, I bought myself a can of this:

This lamp was kind of a trial run for me on the paint, because I have plans to use this stuff A LOT in the new house. All the light fixtures in the new house are gold/brass. Eew. But replacing light fixtures is not cheap, so I'm hoping I can get away with spray painting them. But before I ruin a functioning fixture, I thought I should test it out.

I took some before pictures of the lamp, but apparently my camera ate them, because they are nowhere to be found. To give you an idea of what I started with, picture a lamp with a brass and dark wood base, and a shade that looked a little something like this:

Classy, right? Only picture it with a few random stains and smelling faintly of body odor and cigaretts. (The friend who received the shade at the party threw it in the trash immediately!)

But, like I said, the base had potential. Today, I decided to see if I could turn it into a keeper.

So, after about five minutes in my garage with a can of spraypaint, and a quick trip to Target for a shade, it ended up looking like this (please ignore the icky lighting and flash in these pictures):

Not bad, if I do say so myself.

Here's hoping the light fixtures turn out as well as the lamp did!


Angela said...

Looks great! DIY sounds like a funny hobby!

Janel said...

Love it! I can't wait to see all your projects, maybe that will inspire me to create a few projects of my own!

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