I Love to Create: Chandelier Make-over

Ever feel like cool, home decor pieces that won’t bust the family budget all strive to oppress your individuality?  I know I do.  That’s why when we went looking for a funky lighting fixture for our daughter-to-be’s room, I decided to put the kabash on conformity and take things into my own hands.  With just a few supplies and about a day’s worth of time, I was able to turn an otherwise boring light fixture into a (dare I say) whimsical delight.  Here’s how you can, too!

Step 1:  Score an Affordable Chandelier

A metal fixture like this one can be bought for less than $80 at one of the big box, home improvement stores.    Look for plain and inexpensive–since you’ll be painting it, there’s no need to spend the extra cash and go fancy.
An even better alternative if you have the time to do a little searching though, is to revamp an old chandelier.    Thrift stores and 2nd hand home stores usually have an abundance of garish, ceiling lights for the taking–and often for less than $20!    Don’t be afraid to nab one of those ugly, 1970’s apartment lights either–you know the ones, the hideously tacky, faux gold-plated, candelabra looking numbers– those gems usually have a decent shape to them and just need a little make over.  It happens to the best of us.

Step 2:  Prep for Painting
Remove crystals and other sparkly accouterments.  
Apply an even coat of a primer of your choice (either a spray or brush-on version) to the surface area of the chandelier.  Let dry.
Note:  Wrap up any cords or wires in paper, to keep the paint away from them.

Steps 3 & 4:  Paint & Varnish  (aka Transformation Time!)
Ok, this is the exciting part (at least it was for me!)  After a quick confab with my friend Kathy Cano-Murillo, I discovered that if you use a primer first almost any type of paint will work for projects like this that aren’t going to be put through a lot of wear and tear.  Since that’s the case with this light, I decided to put this newfound crafty knowledge to the test!
If you live in a patio-less apartment, are preggers like me, or just can’t stand the fumes of spray paints–skip the aerosol mess and opt for less stress!  For about $3-$5 (depending on the size of the fixture you’re covering), a non-toxic fabric paint (that’s right, I said fabric paint) like Tulip’s Soft version will get the job done!  Now I know what you’re thinking, “Jeez though, how many of those teeny bottles would it take?  Wouldn’t another option be more practical?”  Well crafties, the answer is 1 to 2.  To give my light a double coat and touch-ups, I barely had to dip in to bottle #2.  *pausing for oohs and ahhs* 😉
The other bonus to using craft paints is that there are often more color choices than you’ll find from their spray sisters.   This leaves the creative doors open for you to decide whether you want to go white for a Shabby Chic look; silver for a more modern feel; or with a bold color for an urban eclectic vibe.  Once you’ve made a life decision about color, it’s time to get started with the painting magic!

Using a sponge brush, paint  as many coats as necessary (let dry between applications) to completely cover the chandelier’s  exterior and hardware.  

Use an artist’s brush to touch-up any nooks and crannies that might’ve alluded the paint party so far.  Let dry.
For extra gleam-y protection, apply a clear coat of something like Crafty Chica’s Glossy Gloss Varnish.
Step 5:  Finishing Touches
Once fixture is completely dry, reattach crystals.
Hang chandelier and bask in the light of your own creativity!

That’s all there is too it.  Quick, easy, inexpensive and unique–just how I like ’em!
Happy crafting!,

3 Responses to “I Love to Create: Chandelier Make-over”

  1. diane

    I like it here you have very good things here thank you to let us see them take care