Carrara marble. Vintage lamps. Edison bulbs. Pretty wire stuff. These are a few of my favorite things. I brought them all together with this $6 vintage lamp project. When I saw this thing I drooled. It was vintage. It had awesome details. It was heavy. THERE WAS MARBLE. You heard me right…MARBLE. Carrara marble. On a lamp. I had to have it.
(please excuse my incredibly messy home…it’s the middle of an errand-running weekend and I haven’t gotten to the straightening up the house part!)
I debated whether or not to paint this lamp. It was fine as-is, but I can’t resist the siren call of chalk paint. I meticulously taped the marble (which needed a lot of cleaning to go from old dust color to brilliant white) and covered the lamp base with two coats of Craftsmart brand “Silver Gray” chalk paint which is another go-to color for me. The details didn’t stand out enough with just the paint so I roughed it up a bit with sandpaper. That still wasn’t enough. I was discouraged. My beautiful lamp looked BLAH. Then I bought a nice wax brush and very delicately brushed some dark antique wax along the details of my lamp. PERFECT.
I bought a basic neutral lamp shade for this lamp and HATED IT. It was awful. I spent a long time trying to figure out what to do. TwinDad ignored my rambling for the most part. Then it hit me. EDISON BULB. I love Edison bulbs because they have that steampunk/vintage vibe that I’m a sucker for. There are so many awesome pendant lights featuring Edision bulbs and wire shades…I could do the same for this lamp. So I thought.
The search for a pretty vintage wire lampshade proved more difficult than I expected. I considered buying a new shade and stripping the fabric, but after a quick inspection and noting all the glue used in covering shades I turned to Etsy. The options were endless. Unfortunately, all the pretty vintage wire shades are sold out of the Netherlands for some reason. Why the Netherlands has the monopoly on this market I don’t understand. I showed TwinDad probably 20 different shades. He had no opinion. I had too many opinions. They were all pretty but I had to narrow down my choices by size…and shipping cost.
(NOTE: when buying a lampshade from Europe, I learned, that it is important to also purchase a reducer ring since European lampshades don’t find our lamps properly. These can be found on eBay for a dollar or two.)
It took a long time for my pretty wire shade to come in the mail, but it’s the perfect final touch to my amazing lamp. It’s funky, it’s vintage, there’s marble, there’s an Edison bulb, and there’s a pretty wire shade. This is one of my favorite things.