Wednesday, July 11, 2012

DIY: $40 bedroom chandelier

As promised, I'm writing out the step-by-step instructions for my most recent, and FIRST diy project!  I've done TONS of paper projects, but the whole home improvement and decorating DIY is new to me.  As I explained in my previous post, I fell in love with the gray/black/yellow bedroom look.  Modern, fresh, clean, and funky!  Totally the opposite of my normal personality and preferences.  The first thing I decided to work on was the hanging chandelier for the bedroom.


  • an old chandelier
  • black spray paint :: I used the cheap $.96 bottle from Walmart, glossy black
  • clear or black beads
  • 24 gauge wire
  • hot glue gun
  • mini lamp shades
  • center punch + hammer
  • hand held drill with small bit
I searched on Craigslist, and found an old gold chandelier for sale, for $10.  It was hideous, and the perfect start to the project.

Step 1: Remove the existing light bulbs, and any covers over the wire/bulb bracket

Step 2: cover the wire/bulb brackets (paper towel, paper, etc).  I used sheets of paper, folded and taped around the brackets

Step 3: Cautiously using the spray paint, begin painting.  Keep the can about 4-6" away from the chandelier, as much as possible to avoid paint build-up and runs. Allow to dry overnight or more.  You can do a second coat of paint if you feel it's necessary.  I painted all the way up the chain, and the top ceiling dome cover also.

Step 4:  Prepare the bling!  I bought dropsy beads from Hobby Lobby, on sale for $.75 each.  Since there were 5 lamps on my chandelier, I decided to do 1 long dangle, and 2 short dangles on each lamp.  Using 24 gauge wire, I strung it through the clasp of my dropsy bead, and strung a yellow bead, and 2 clear beads onto each strand for the long dangles, and created the short dangles with just 2 clear beads.

I left about 1" wire strung past the bead dangles, to stick up through the lamp cups in the next step.

Step 5: Using a center punch (or sharp screw driver), hammer a divot in the lamp cups - I created 3 divots per cup, for the 3 dangles to hang from.  Using a 1/16" drill bit and hand-held drill, carefully drill a hole at each divot.  Keep your drill bit straight up and down, otherwise you may break a bit in half (which is what we did!).

Step 6:  Slide the 1" wire of your dangles up through the small holes in the lamp cups.  Bend the wire over to temporarily secure each dangle.  Using a hoe glue gun, glue the wires into the cups with a small dot of glue.

Step 7: Install new lightbulbs, if applicable.  Install lamp shades.

P R I C E  B R E A K D O W N :

  • chandelier: $10
  • lamp shades: 5 @ $2.55 each, Hobby Lobby 40% off coupons = $12.75
  • dangle beads: $8, Hobby Lobby 50% off sale
  • glossy black spray paint: $.96, Walmart
  • light bulbs: 5 @ $1.25 each = $6.25
  • 24 gauge wire: used existing
TOTAL = $37.96

And viola! ENJOY!

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