The Little Lamp that Was

Prior to moving into our loft in Dallas, I found a gorgeous lampshade at a flea market.  Now, I use the word "lampshade" loosely because the "shade" part was missing.  It was actually raw metal in the shape of a lampshade, with some hanging fringe.

I seem to have this habit of purchasing items that are shells of their former life (see The Almost Chair post).  I couldn't resist this wire shade.  It had the sweetest curves and trim.

It was dainty looking, quaint if you will, but large in size.  And that fringe!  What girl can resist fringe??!

I knew from the moment I saw it that I wanted to make this into a hanging light, but wasn't quite sure where to start (went to the hubby for answers) or where I was going to hang it.  It definitely did not fit with the style of our house.  So, it sat in the closet staring at me for a few weeks.

Then, we decided to sell our house and move into downtown Dallas to be closer to our office.  Enter the loft -- with an industrial feel.  This would be the perfect place to hang this beautiful wire shade. I don't think the hubby was too thrilled that we were actually going to get this project off the ground, literally.  :-)

Fortunately, the loft had 3 horrible pendant lights over the bar area.  The loft begged me to take those pendant lights down and replace them with something much better. Unfortunately, I only had one super cool wire shade.  What to do?  Solution: purchase two matching lampshades at Walmart, rip the shade off to the wire, tea stain the trim to match the super cool wire shade and hang them all up.  Which is exactly what we did.

My husband has some electrician abilities or we would have never attempted this on our own.  The lights were going to have to be be hard-wired into the fixtures of the previous lights.

We started by going to Lowes to purchase porcelain fixture sockets to fit into the shades.

We used heavy duty wire, which wasn't beautiful but worked in the loft, to hang the lights.  You can find much nicer wire at Sundial Wire.  They have a cotton cloth-covered wire that would add that perfect vintage touch.

My husband risked life and limb by placing his ladder on top of the bar area (did I mention the ceilings were over 13 feet tall?) to hang these for me.  I don't know about you, but we were quite pleased with how these turned out.

I hate that we are unable to hang them in our current home due to it being a rental, but we are looking forward to hanging them again when we find our permanent home.

Please remember, if you have a beautiful shade you want to turn into a lamp, seek professional help.  I mean an electrician!


  1. Benita, that is so clever and creative! Your place is lovely!
    I would love for you to stop by my blog and join our Something to Talk About Link party!
    Have a great day and hope to see you there!

    1. Thank you so very much Karen! I appreciate it and thank you for the invitation. Hopefully all of my links are working properly on your page! Have a great evening!

  2. Robin, thank you so much! I appreciate being able to link! My husband enjoys little projects like this and is so kind to help me when I bring strays home! :-)

  3. Great project - it looks amazing!
    Ann -

    1. Thank you so much! We haven’t been able to use them in this house rental, but as soon as we find our home, they are going back up! Have a great day!

  4. I never saw this, amazing. You have a great eye. I need an old lampshade now. Seriously.

    1. Thank you ma’am. Just head on over to the thrift store or Goodwill and find a cute one to rip up. I try to keep an eye out because I love old lampshades and want to use them in different rooms…the fringe just adds a little texture. Unfortunately, they are sitting in a closet until we buy a house – the owners of this house won’t let me change the pendant lights out. Yes, I’m pouting about it…LOL


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