Archives For lamps

I apologize for the light programing last week. I got food poisoning which morphed itself into a miserable cold, but I’m finally on the mend!

I bought my Buddha lamp at a vintage outdoor market over a year ago. In the time since, it’s moved around a bit but mostly it’s been on my nightstand. I really like the lamp but I like it even more for being only $10! When I bought it I had plans for painting it and changing the shade but you know, time passes and things don’t get done. Until this weekend that is!

Little House Design: Lamp makeover with gold spray paint Little House Design: Lamp makeover with gold spray paint I decided to spray it gold! It’s bold and crazy, but I think I really like it.

One of the main reasons this makeover got delayed is because I have been looking for the right lampshade for a year. Here’s something that I didn’t learn in Kindergarten: Lampshades are stupid expensive. I mean seriously, it is nearly impossible to find a white drum shaped lampshade for under $20. You can find used lampshades for pretty cheap but they are all horribly shaped like the ‘before’ version of this lamp. I wanted a simple straight up and down circular white lampshade without pleats for under $15, is that too much to ask for?? Apparently, yes, it is.

Finally I caved and bought one for $25 and it hurt. I also bought a $4 can of gold spray paint.

Little House Design: Lamp makeover with gold spray paint All in all the makeover cost $29 plus the original $10 lamp which makes it a $39 lamp. Still a great price for a lamp, but more than I wanted to pay for it, sigh.

Little House Design: Lamp makeover with gold spray paint My only reservation about my new gold lamp is that it is just so… so gold. That was my intention obviously, but it’s pretty shiny even for me. I think what it is missing is the dimension it had before. Maybe at some point I’ll go over it with black paint and add dimension in the shadowed areas. Check back in a year to see if I’ve gotten around to that, ha!


Photographs of my Bedroom

October 24, 2013 — 1 Comment

This is my bedroom as of September 2013, enjoy!

Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser Little House Design: Bedroom with bold blue walls and campaign dresser

All photos are courtesy of Ashley a. Photography, thanks Ashley!

This weekend I knocked two things off of my final ‘to-do’ list for the second bedroom. The first is that I bought a $25 used box spring to raise the bed up to a normal height. Are you grossed out that I bought a used box spring? Well, don’t worry your pretty little head I checked it for bugs… ugh, now I’m grossed out.

The other project I did required more skill. In fact it required the ultimate skill: PATIENCE. Have I mentioned I’m impatient? Ugh. I can’t even talk about it stress me out.

The set of lamps (here) that I bought for $26 had seen better days so I decided to give them a face lift. The lamp bases aren’t bad, but the lampshades really needed some work. They are a good shape but a gross texture and color. So I weighed my options… I’ve painted a lampshade before and it turned out fine, but this time I decided to cover them in fabric.
I’ve seen a hundred tutorials on Pinterest so I read through a few and then just winged it. I decided to use a hot glue gun (some tutorials used spray adhesive and others used tacky glue). Amazingly I don’t own a glue gun even though I am relatively crafty so I had to buy one. It was $2.49! The glue sticks were more expensive at $2.99 but still cheap.
Choosing fabric turned out to be quite a task. There are so many patterns to choose from! Plus I had to consider how it would look with light filtering through it. After a solid 20 minutes of browsing (I went to Jo Ann Fabrics) I narrowed it down to these three:
I ultimately went with the middle one. The geometric flower was awesome but I wasn’t sure if I would like it long term and the pale grey chevron was a little too light for my bold taste. In this pictures it looks like the middle fabric is black and white but it is actually cream and navy blue. Chevron is trending down but I still like it so I went for it. It was $4.99 a yard plus 30% off which comes out to like $3.73 a yard after tax, not bad at all! The bolt was almost empty so I only got 2 and 3/4 yards and I crossed my fingers that it would be enough.
I won’t go into much detail on how I did the project because you’d be better off following another tutorial (like this one or this one) but the basic process was this:
1) I rolled out the fabric and sort of measured how much I would need. I did this at a friend’s house and I was distracted because we were talking so I didn’t do a very good job of measuring. C’est la vie. Side note: Don’t try to measure and cut fabric on carpet.
2) Once I had my piece cut out I started glueing it on. I only glued at the seam and around the edges, not the whole body of the shade. I also didn’t take pictures because I only have two hands.
3) It started to look bad so I just make stuff up.
4) I get it home and turn on the lights and I see this:
Don’t ever let me cut your hair because apparently I have no sense of what is straight. And I wasn’t even drunk! Geez.
After a little trimming all was well in the world.
That is as long as you don’t turn it around! Yep, seams be crazy. I’m a mess, I need help with my crafts. I am too impatient to do things right. I just get too excited and I don’t think things through. Lame. Wow, that looks so bad, I’m embarrassed to even post that… don’t judge me too harshly. That is actually the worst seam, the other lamp looks much better.
But everything looks good from this side!
The second one turned out much better.
Overall, I am happy with how they turned out. I’m a little annoyed that I didn’t do a better job on the seams, but oh well. After the fabric update each lamps still only cost $17! You seriously can not get a lamp that cheap anywhere so I’m very happy with two big lamps for only $34.
Have you tried fabric wrapping lampshades before? It seems like it should be easy, but it definitely took more skill and patience than I expected. Thankfully, the ‘bad’ lamp is an a corner and hopefully no one will turn it around and judge me.

How to Paint a Lampshade

November 19, 2012 — Leave a comment

About a year ago I decided to paint a lampshade. The shade had a big dent in it and I was about to replace it when I had an idea. What if I painted a design on it to distract from the dent? (This was after I had gone to the store and found out that lampshades are like $20-30.) I figured it was the perfect lampshade to test the technique on since I wasn’t sure if it would work. Much to my surprise it did work! And even though it is dented on one side I’ve kept the lampshade because I love the way it turned out.

Since I did this project a year ago I don’t have any pictures of the process but all I did was use a pencil and painter’s tape to mark out the design I wanted. I used the blue painter’s tape and guess what happened?
Yep, there’s leakage. This is exactly why I only use green FrogTape now (more on that here).
Though it is far from perfect the overall affect is very cool and graphic. I chose to do two large stripes around the diameter but the options are wide open for this project. You could use a stencil, freehand a design, write words, etc. The lampshade I used is a sort of cotten-y material over plastic so paint worked great on it but I don’t think this would work on a polyester shade or anything with pleated/gathered fabric. It is a really great way to make a plain shade more interesting or to help distract the eye from blemishes.

So what do you think? Would you ever paint a lampshade?

IKEA Musings

August 5, 2012 — 3 Comments

Yesterday I got this in the mail:

Do you like IKEA? I, unashamedly, do. Getting this catalogue totally made my day. In my every day life I try to eat locally, but shopping locally is a lot harder. Groceries purchased at local grocers are more expensive, handcrafted furniture is more expensive, boutique clothing is more expensive, etc. And since my big bonus hasn’t arrived (it never will) I can’t afford to always shop locally. I say all of this because sometimes shopping at big box stores is the best option. Maybe some day I will be able to support local artisans in all my interior design purchases but for now I’m limited to a few small purchases here and there. But the point of this post is to celebrate IKEA. I’m some what of an IKEA newbie. My first time going was only four years ago. There isn’t an IKEA in Indianapolis so I never went growing up. When I moved to DC there was one a few miles away in Maryland so I went there a few times. I liked it a lot and bought a few things there but I was living in tiny apartments so I couldn’t buy much. When I moved back to Indianapolis last year I found out the closest one is two hours away in a suburb of Cincinnati, OH. I’ve been a few times since I’ve been back and when I first bought my house I bought a lot of furniture there. My best IKEA tip is this. Go on Wednesday morning at 10:00am. Why that specific time? Because every Wednesday the ‘As Is’ section is 50% off everything. That’s pretty much how cheap I am. I go to the cheapest furniture store in the world and I shop the clearance section. Go figure. Here are a few of my IKEA purchases:

This is my favorite IKEA purchase of all time. This is the STOCKHOLM RAND rug. It retails for $299 for the 5’x7′ and I got it for $50 in the ‘As Is’ section. Yes, that’s right, $50! Best. Purchase. Ever.

These shelves are EKBY JÄRPEN/ EKBY BJÄRNUM. They were $29.99 each. I wish I had gotten one more and made it three instead of two, so maybe I’ll do that soon. The only thing about these shelves is that they are only about 10″ deep so make sure you read the dimensions on these products before you buy them.

I’m not actually sure what this bookcase is. I’m guessing it’s a Billy bookcase with legs and glass doors. I got in ‘As Is’ for $120. It’s a great bookcase and I can not stress enough how much I love glass doors on bookcases. NO DUST. Enough said. The problem I’m having with this bookcase right now is that it’s black. I really like dark walls and so it is getting lost in the wall color (this picture was taken before I painted my bedroom walls dark blue). I’m thinking of painting it white, but that seems like a lot of work so I’m really debating whether or not to go for it.

This image has two IKEA items. The first is the large art print on canvas. I got it as a Christmas gift about three years ago from my mother. I’ve always been drawn to Gustav Klimt’s art and when I saw this close up large scale print of “The Three Ages of Woman: Mother and Child” I knew I had to have it. It costs $79.99. Sometimes I feel self-conscious about having it because I’m not a mother, but most of the time I really love it. The second item is the cabinet. I don’t have any idea what kind of cabinet it is. I got it in the ‘As Is’ section for about $70 I think. I don’t remember the exact amount. On IKEA’s website I tried to look up what kind it is, but no luck. My best guess is something in the BESTÅ family. I think it is intended to be a TV cabinet but I use it my dining room as a sideboard. During parties I use it as a bar cart.

When I first put it in the dining room I was using the cabinet part to store serving platters and other kitchen things, but then I realized that I had plenty of room in my kitchen for that stuff. Now I use it for my craft storage. It works great there because it’s right by the dining room table which is where I do most of my crafting anyway (excuse the blurry picture). IKEA Musings

This image shows two more IKEA items. The couch is IKEA’s KARLSTAD couch in Isunda Gray. I love this couch and I’m hoping to purchase a second one soon. I am a huge fan of the Karlstad line. It has the clean line of a classic Billy Baldwin couch without the huge price tag. The 6.5′ couch is only $599.00 and if you’ve ever shopped for a couch you know that’s a great price. The second item is the coffee table. It is the STRIND table which retails for $99. I got it for $30 in the ‘As Is’ section. It works really well in here for now but I have dreams of something a litte different in the future. It is a great starter coffee table. IKEA Musings

This is an old photo but I have still have both of these pieces (in different places now). The first is the LACK coffee table. This is an IKEA classic, most often seen in dorm rooms and tiny apartments, but it serves it’s purpose. I have another LACK table in birch on castors that is currently collecting dust on my unused front porch. They are so cheap it really doesn’t matter what you do with them. They white table was only $7.99…seriously. I think I got the one on castors for about $15 in ‘As Is.’ The lamp is the VÄTE lamp and it was $29.99. I got it four years ago and it has surprisingly survived countless moves. I’m honestly so impressed that it hasn’t ripped yet (knock on wood…er laminate, this is an IKEA post afterall).

This is the BÖJA lamp. I have two and they are about 20″ tall. Currently they are flanking my TV. I really like them. They give off good light. They retail for $39.99 and I got both for $30. Go me! IKEA Musings

This is a lamp I got on Craigslist. Yes, two of my very favorite things in one, IKEA and Craigslist. I bought it for $50. It retails for $59.99. It was brand new. Not my best Craigslist haggling but it saved my $9.99 and a four hour drive so it was worth it. I have so much more IKEA stuff in my house. Mostly kitchen stuff like dishes, wine glasses, and glass canisters. I also have have sheets and a duvet cover, a quilt, and lighting fixtures (which can be seen in other posts). It is a great place to spend the day. I love the little houses they create within the store. I love all the great storage solutions (even though I don’t have enough stuff to require all that storage). I always have a long list of things I want to buy there. What’s your favorite IKEA purchase?