Sunday, January 18, 2015

Let's Build a Lamp!

As a collector of a lovely assortment of antiques, Marita owned and admired a large glass jug for many years. Two years ago, as the construction wound down and the decorating began, she donated the jug to the cause - suggesting that we create a lamp for the great room. It was a great idea, of course, but I wasn't about to drill a hole in a glass jug all by myself. So the jug was stored away until a certain someone was finally convinced that he and his power tools were the right fit for the project. Check out the results!
The jug is really pretty; green glass, textured panels, and marks highlighting each half-gallon of the 3-gallon capacity. I found the shade at Tuesday Morning back in July. It's been waiting patiently in storage, too.
First step:  drill the hole.
Scott used the same drill bit he uses for our porcelain tile. I helped out by spritzing the bit with water as it bore through the thick glass. This step is the main reason why this project was on hold for so long . . . no one ever thinks this will go well.
Then, less than 30 seconds later, a nice, clean hole was created. Scott used the shop vac (set to "blow" mode) to clear out the water leftover from a quick rinse.
I purchased the lamp parts on my own at Menard's several months ago. I thought I had everything figured out but Scott pointed out the need for a cap to cover the jar's opening and provide an attachment point for the socket. I wondered how much time we would have to spend at Home Depot, running around trying to find a lid for an antique jug. I suggested it would be worth checking all of the jars in the fridge and pantry; surely a jar of pickles or a bottle of salad dressing could sacrifice its top. As luck would have it, an unopened jar of capers had the perfect lid! Scott drilled a hole in the center, and we were good-to-go.
The threaded rod was another thing I didn't purchase. We took apart an unused lamp and found what we needed. Of course this raised the question, "why do we have so many unused lamps?"
Next, add the cord.
The new hole was just the right size to feed the cord through but Scott had to use a bent piece of wire to snag it and lift it through the top. He then fed the cord through the threaded rod and attached it to the socket.
The cap and socket assembly were screwed onto the jug, and then the harp was attached.
Then, unwrap the shade.
This is by far the worst step of the whole project. Why do they make this cellophane so hard to remove? It creates static electricity, too, which draws all manner of dust and dirt right onto the shade. Ugh!
Final step:  plug it in and enjoy!
Two years and one hour later, a lamp is born. That's right . . . after all that delay (not to mention the search for the cap and threaded rod,) the lamp was completed in just over an hour. It now has a new home in the great room. Thank you, Mama Marita, for sharing the jug and your great idea!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

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