Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Place mat lampshade

I just finished this today! We've had the lamp for awhile but I wanted to snazzy it up a bit.

It used to look like this. Nothing terribly wrong with it but also nothing really right. I knew I wanted to keep the base as is (because the dark wood works well with my Indian/Moroccan vibe).

Sorry about the blurry pics again, dark corner of the room... And I know it's easily fixed by moving the lamp to another part of the room. It's just that my laziness prevented that from happening since it would involve moving the whole entertainment bench out from the wall and crawling behind it in dust bunnies and who knows what else to unplug the lamp only to do it again in the reverse when done.

Anyway. I knew I wanted a drum shade for this lamp since all the main lamps in our living room have this shape and this little lamp was standing out like an odd-shaped thumb. Nothing presented itself on my thrift store runs and the shades in the "real" stores seemed too expensive. So in the end I picked this shade up at the thrift store for a few dollars, thinking I was going to alter it.

Not a proper before since I've already started ripping it apart. I ended up taking it apart completely.

The large circle, the original bottom of the shade, had the perfect circumference for making the size shade I had in mind. I saved the top circle as well so I'd have something to attach the shade to the harp with. Beside them you see one of the place mats that make up the actual shade.

You've seen them before here. They proved impossible to keep clean for any amount of time with these monkey kids we have, who apparently eat with the same "enthusiasm" as a pack of starved dingoes.

I did this in the wrong order so if you make your own I suggest you first connect the two circles together before you attach the place mat to the whole contraption (see below). Here's what I did instead (it worked too, but the other way should be easier).

The shade is made up of about 2 1/2 rectangular place mats wired together length-wise. I started with one first and used very thin wire to connect the large circle to the place mat, "hiding" the circle behind the band of threads holding the place mat together. Then I wired the next place mat to the first and kept attaching it to the circle, same with the next place mat.

The last place mat had to be cut short and the resulting loose thread ends were glued to the last stick of the place mat to keep holding it together.

It's hard to see here but no 1 points to where the place mats have been joined and no 2 to two places where the place mat has been attached to the large circle. When I was done I trimmed the wires a little and flattened them to the inside of the shade.

Time for the smaller circle. I used thicker wire to suspend it in the middle of the shade, pulling it taut as well as I could (pliers are helpful for that step).

A blurry close-up :) I just wrapped the wire around itself to secure.

If you want to you can add another circle at the bottom of the shade. I found that it's pretty sturdy as is because the place mats are rigid and hold the drum shape well without any further support.

So this is what it looked like at that point.

 Nice, but maybe lacking a little something?

The sea of wood and brown needed a contrast of some kind.

A trip to Michael's today yielded a plastic gold foil "ribbon" with a crocodile pattern. Yay for glitz and shimmer! $2 for a spool and one spool proved enough. I secured it with hot glue and then I was done!

For about $5 (I had some of the supplies on hand) I got my drum shade. An ethnic chic shade with that little extra glimmer that I like so much :) I may dab a little brown craft paint on that smaller white circle because I can see it when the shade is lit and if it's brown it would blend better. But for now I'm pretty happy with it.

I've also finished a few petty projects as well.

A purple velvet throw pillow I got at Pier 1 with my gift card looked a little plain.

A gold nylon ribbon and some hand stitching makes it resemble one of those designer pillows. (The pillow is still purple, it's just the bright sun that messed with me).

I also had to go and get myself some new shoes and couldn't leave well enough alone.
The one on the left is how it came, the one on the right is me adding some ribbon and bling.

I looped a narrow ribbon through the flower cut-outs to make a three petaled flower. Trimmed and secured on the back with E600 glue. The yellow plastic flower jewels were also glued on with E600. I had the accessories on hand so - blinged personalized shoes for the price of store-bought plain ones! Me happy!

Ps. Linking up with
Someday Crafts
The Thrifty Home
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Trying to keep my nose above water...

School is out for the summer and I'm desperately trying to keep my kids from tearing the house apart, and maybe even have fun somewhere in between :) So forgive me if my posts are slightly more spread out for awhile. I'm still working on projects but it's harder to do any kind of more involved stuff with the kids around all the time.

I thought my garden was coming along so nicely, but that was while the tornadoes were coming through on a regular basis bringing lots of rain with them. Now that we're in the 100's and no rain in the forecast things are dying left and right... I guess I'll actually have to start watering my garden in a more organized way but just thinking about it makes me tired. Somewhere around here is where I usually give up on my garden, we'll see. Not even drought tolerant plants can live on no water - who knew, right? :) Someone should invent plants that could.

The husband brought my camera with all my pics on it to work today so I have nothing of my own to show you. Hence the inspiration file parade :)

This is what my yard would look like if I knew what I was doing :) I've planted lavender seeds and have little seedlings that I don't seem to be watering often enough or something. I have only a handful left. Sigh.

Ooh, don't these stairs just make you happy?

These door pulls couldn't be very hard to DIY and would give a wonderful Asian flair to any armoire/cupboard.

I'll have one of these armoires, please! In this exact colorway. Oh, and a bigger house to put it in....

I love palm trees! This could be the new chic entrance to my bigger house :)

If I had enough rain to keep my garden alive but not so much as to ruin my carpets and cushions this might be something I'd go for.

 That same garden would house a small palace like this one, of course! 
Maybe that palace would have one moody room where you can escape the sun and the heat surrounded by pretty sheers? Stenciling pretty patterns on sheers should be a fun DIY, don't you think?

I hope you have a wonderful summer and I'll be back shortly with more projects!

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