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Friday, July 29, 2011

Garage Sale Lamp Makeover

I've been searching high and low for a pair of lamps to go in our master bedroom.  I wanted lamps that were tall enough to be effective reading lamps...so many are just too short!  And let's face it, I'm cheap, and I was not liking the prices on lamps that I wasn't even lukewarm about.  Thrift stores were giving me nothing, and so every night I'd be reading in poor light.
And then.  I picked up a pair of these at a recent garage sale for $2.50 each.
Nice classic shape, but ugly as sin.  It's all about vision though!  Not long after, the July Create With Me over at U Create was announced: Lamp Makeovers!  Perfect!
I knew exactly what I wanted to do with the bases.  Copper with that lovely greenish patina to them.  Something kinda shabby chic, rustic, almost a little beachy.  I wasn't sure what to do yet with the lampshades, so I just removed them and got to work.  I used Sophisticated Finishes products for this job.  First, the primer.
Then onto the copper.
One thing I wish I'd thought to do is this: give the lamps a couple coats of Krylon Metallic spray paint in Copper.  Then do the primer, and continue with the copper.  If I had done that, then my lamps wouldn't have looked like this after one coat:
It took seven coats of this kinda pricey product to get it to look like this:
(Ignore my messy garage.) Beautiful, though, right?  So onto the patina.
This was kinda tricky.  I tried applying it with both a foam brush and a regular paint brush.  I think it worked better with the foam (the paint brush left distinct brushstrokes of patina), but I think best of all would have been plain ole cotton balls.  Really.
I fell in love (along with most of the blogging world) with the burlap ruffle shade from Mama Says Sew, and so I replicated that.  It was exactly what I was looking for, only difference is my lampshade curve out, so I filled in the wider parts with some smaller pieces of burlap.  Oh, and let me just tell you, I burned my fingers with hot glue repeatedly doing this! (In fact, I kept yelling every time it happened, and my husband got sick of it after awhile...)
And now, the finished product:

I'm still kinda on the fence about the patina.  I haven't sealed it yet since I'm undecided (and it will apparently go more green once sealed), so I can still clean off the oxidation if I want.  What do you think?
And, as always, a recap:

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