Quick and Easy Crafts

Marble Lamp

Mason Jar Marble Lamp

Remember those marbles I talked about yesterday? The one catch to me making John a marble tray was that I not use all of the marbles in case he ever wanted to play with them again. My solution to this was to make him a lamp out of a mason jar to display his marbles in a way that he could still get access to them if he wanted to.

This was really simple — Amazon sells kits for turning mason jars into lamps. So, I popped the top off of the jar, filled it with marbles, screwed on the kit and a put a light bulb in the lamp. Easy as pie.

The tricky part? Finding a darn lampshade that didn’t look ridiculous on the lamp. I think I tried five of them. I tried a shade from le Target — way too big. I tried three different shades from Home Depot… way too small. The one in the photo used to be pink with flowers. Not too manly. Then I spray painted it ivory. That didn’t look so hot either. As a final attempt to use this shade, which was the best size and shape of any of the ones I tried, I painted it grayish blue and accented with silver paint.

Phew, this was way trickier of a project than I ever intended because of that darn shade.


It was all worth it because he really liked the lamp. It looks great in their antique room, too.


Have you ever turned something into a lamp? Next time I want to try it without using a pre-fab kit. What would you ill your mason jar with? I think shells would be neat, but our house isn’t too beachy. Still would be pretty though!

Craft Projects

Lampshade refab

My coworker had a cute lamp in her office that another coworker left behind when she left. She loved the shape of the lamp and the shade, but the colors didn’t match the rest of her office’s blue theme with small pops of red here and there. The shade (I have no Before picture, sorry!) was covered in a bright red, orange and yellow paisley fabric.

In an attempt to redo the shade, she tore off that fabric, leaving the white backing in tact. I offered to help her refinish it because I have a problem and can’t say “no” to craft projects. So I stole her unfinished shade and took it home to make something purdy.

Here’s what I started with. Pretty bare boned, huh?

I had lots of ideas on how to redo her lamp shade. I ultimately decided to recover it with fabric because I thought it would work best in her office that way.

I grabbed a neutral fabric out of my fabric stash and started recovering the shade. I chose to use a dark stitch because I thought it would be a cute accent. I started at the top of the frame, stitching the fabric right through the white backing. I went around the top twice with the chocolate thread.

I don’t have a picture of this next step because I needed both hands to do it. Once the top was sewn onto the frame, I stretched the fabric as taut as possible around the bottom of the lamp and stitched it. Since the shade is smaller at the top, I needed extra fabric for the bottom half — this left me with an overlap of fabric. I didn’t want the unsightly seam to ruin Amy’s shade, so I added five grayish-blue flower embellishments.

For each flower, I cut a circle out of my fabric. I then pinched it in the middle and sewed it to the shade, folding the flower to get more creases as I sewed. Once each flower was on the shade, I sewed a chocolate-brown button to the middle.

I’m very surprised with how well this turned out. I thought for sure I’d be delivering bad news to Amy that I killed her lamp shade, but it’s alive and well!

What do you think? I think it’s pretty stinking cute, and much better than the bare naked shade!

Craft Projects

Project 9: Rope Lamp

Today I beautified an old, ugly lamp. Well, I’m not sure how pretty it is… the hubby says it looks like a cat’s scratching post. He might be right. Either way, the idea is cool and certainly worth sharing.

Enter ugly lamp:

So, the lamp doesn’t look too terrible here… but believe me, it wasn’t pretty. The lamp was originally in my step dad’s aunt’s house and was a wood-tone color with a brass bass. Totally horrifying. SO, I spray painted it. But, as I’ve said before and will say again, I am not the best with spray paint. I am too impatient and I spray too much paint and it runs and runs and runs. that might be a hyperbole, but whatevs. Morale of the story: round one of beautifying the lamp didn’t go so well.

The hubby and I were strolling through Lowe’s today and I actually remembered to buy rope for this project. Once we got home, I propped down with some hot glue and scissors and began the transformation.

I started at the top of the lamp, but if you try your own version of this project, I’d start at the bottom — especially if the base of your lamp isn’t a circle. That gave me some trouble later on. Anyway, put some hot glue to secure your rope to the base.

Since the rope I used was a little heavy, I had to hold it in place along the way so it wouldn’t fall right back off. Once your rope is secured on, start wrapping. I wrapped the lamp base very tightly, which was the look I was going for.

As I traveled with the rope, I made sure to put hot glue beneath it all. I used a lot of glue. A lot a lot.

Many hot glue burns and an hour later, I reached the square base of the lamp.

I decided to keep wrapping the rope in a circle around the base until I couldn’t wrap it any more. Then, I cut strips of the rope to cover any part of the base that remained uncovered. It was at this point that I realized the bottom of my ugly lamp was reallllly ugly. So, I removed the bottom before proceeding.

Gross, right?

Once I finished covering the lamp with rope I glued a square piece of felt to the bottom to replace the nastiness that it was before. I didn’t want to leave it uncovered because the wires were all right there.

And, my lamp was finished.

So what do you think? Does it look like a scratching post? Eh, maybe. Either way, it’s way better than before.

And the best part… my shellac nails are still in tact, even after being covered in hot glue. Awesome.