DIY Table Lamp Ideas That Won’t Cost You a Fortune

Sanding ceramic lamp base before painting.

  • Spray Paint Table Lamp Base

    Here is the link to show you how to add a standard dimming socket to a lamp:

    brushing on concrete patch mixed with black paint to a lamp base.

  • Add White Chalk Paint Layer

    When decorating a room, the right type of lighting – from table lamps, floor lamps to a single pendant light can make or break your decorating efforts. The right lighting fixture adds drama, creates a focal point and establishes a cohesive look.

    As soon as you apply the white chalk paint, use a sponge to remove most of it to create a chalky look over the black color.

    For my foyer table, I wanted the look of black plaster or rustic stone based table lamps I see in decorating catalogs, but not the $300 and up price tag. Hence my need to use my creativity to DIY these styles of decorator lamps on my own.

    • Mix Concrete Patch and Paint

      Let dry.

      To create more depth to the finish, dab a rag into a can of dark wax and then rub it over the lamp base in a few areas.

      Most of the lamp rewiring kits come with a new socket, cord, rod and harp.

      Consider Adding a Dimming Socket

      I liked the shape, but the swashes of orange and brown as well as the modern look of the design were not my style… but, I am sure anyone who likes vintage or modern decor may think this lamp is perfect just the way it is.

      Mixing black chalk paint and concrete patch in two plastic containers.

    • Apply Mixture to Lamp Base

      If you like the way the painted base looks, then you are done.

      Use a clean lint-free rag to remove any excess. Let dry.

      Once you like what you see, you will have more confidence doing the technique on a lamp base.

      More DIY Table Lamp Ideas:

      Fast and Easy DIY Table Lamp Ideas and makeovers.

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    • Sponging over white chalk paint on lamp base makeover.

    • Optional: Add a Layer of Dark Wax

      If you have an old shade that fits your lamp, but don’t like the style, consider making a cover for the shade that will coordinate with your DIY project lamp,

      With the success of these DIY lamp projects, along with faux stone finishes I added to a planter and a large bowl I made. Completing each gave me the confidence to try updating this thrift store table lamp I found into something designer worthy.

      How to Makeover a Thrift Store Table Lamp Tutorial

      I chose to use a 100 watt soft white bulb in my lamp and added a socket dimmer so when we don’t need to have bright light in the room, we can easily dim the light right from the socket to add a warmer moody feel.

      Textured paint being added to a table lamp base.

    • Create Horizontal Lines

      Many stores only sell shades with a lamp, but I have found the best places to buy affordable lamp shades sold separately in all sizes is at Target, Lowes and Walmart.

      How to Make a Lamp Shade Cover

      Table of Contents

    Foyer table lamp DIY on a table with fall decor.

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    A dimming socket is nice to have in a living room when watching TV or in a dining room to add mood lighting when entertaining. Adding one can easily be added to a table or floor lamp or even a pendant lamp if it has a standard size socket.

    Let dry.

    Sand lamp base with 100 grit sandpaper to rough up the surface, then clean off all sanding grit and any dirt on the surface.

    Whitewashing over textured black painted lamp base.

  • Dab Off White Chalk Paint

    As I mentioned above, consider using a dimming socket instead of a regular light bulb socket.

    Add more black chalk paint as needed.

    Of all the DIY Lamp Ideas I have shared, this one was the easiest to do. It took about 30 minutes to complete and 24 hours to dry completely.

    artifact table lamp base

    Try to get around the lamp base in one long swipe. Once you get around the top section, move down on the base and repeat the process until you reach the bottom.

    If you find the perfect table lamp at a thrift store or own one that no longer works, you can purchase a lamp kit to rewire a lamp base. Having a kit makes it is easy to do. You have probably seen these kits used to make a mason jar or bottle lamps at crafts fairs and on Pinterest.

    If you are inspired to make over an old lamp, but are afraid to give it a try, start by experimenting with texture compounds and paints on a piece of scrap wood until you get a feel for the technique and colors that you like.

    supplies needed:

    • Thrift store lamp
    • 3 cups Ready-Mix Concrete Patch – home improvement store
    • Black spray paint + primer in one
    • 1 cup black chalk paint
    • 1 cup white chalk paint
    • 3 cups water
    • Dark wax and rag
    • 2 mixing containers
    • 3″ wide chip style paint brush
    • Stirring stick
    • Sponge

    Here are a few easy ways to add height to a table lamp:

    1. Stack a few hardcover books under the lamp.
    2. Purchase a “decorative riser.” Or make one using pre-cut wood rounds and wood balls found at the craft store.
    3. Place the lamp on a few slices of a tree trunk.
    4. Look around your house for something to stack, like cutting boards or baskets. Place what you find under the lamp to see if it complements the lamp.

    Where to Buy Inexpensive Lamp Shades

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  • Foyer table lamp DIY makeover of a thrift store lamp.

    I was happy with one layer of the dark wax, but don’t be afraid to try to use more or even use another color of wax or watered down paint over the black textured finish.

    Water down white chalk paint: 1 part chalk paint to 6 parts water. Mix well. Brush this mixture over the dried black concrete patch layer.

    Using a paint stirring stick, apply the concrete patch and black chalk paint mixture over the base of the lamp as if you were icing a cake.

    If you are looking for DIY table lamp ideas, I have shared a few and recently made over another table lamp from the thrift store.

    I haven’t made any DIY lamps from scratch, but have previously upcycled another thrift store table lamp and even a chandelier to give each a new look using texture paint or craft paint. You can find these and more DIY table lamp ideas as you scroll to the end of this post.

    I like upcycling table lamps as they are an inexpensive way to update home decor at a fraction of the cost of buying a trendy new table lamp from a furniture store or home decorating catalog.