Once upon a time, there lived the ugliest lamp on the face of the planet.
|I'm an ugly lamp.|
I purchased this little beauty from MCC one day, one of my favorite shopping locals.
"How much for this lamp, good fellow?" asked I to the lovely man in his late 70's in his permanent position behind a workbench in a back corner of the store.
"10 bucks for the both of them," he replied with little emotion.
Oh joy! There were two!
I was shocked at what little passion he felt about the fantastic deal he was extending to me. Before he could realize his mistake and snatch my new prized possessions away from me, I rushed to the front counter, handed over my bill and raced from the store.
A little black spray paint, purchased from your friend and mine, ICI paints, for a decent employee discount, and a new shade from my place of temptation, Home Sense, and I had 2 beautiful new lamps.
|I am truly lovely.|
How do I do this? you ask. Have no fear. I am here.
Step 1) Develop The Eye
It's hard to see the beauty in the midst of horror.
Instead of looking at something for what it is, look at it for what it could be.
Ignore the details and look at the SHAPE.
These bases had lovely curves. Sure they were brass and wood and some foreign gold metal, but they were rounded and had the filigree design I was looking for. Colour can be changed, shape can not. Well, can not without the help of some hefty tools I do not currently have in my possession. Once you've found your perfectly shaped item, you're halfway there!
Step 2) Stripping (Please keep your clothes on)
Strip your item down to the bare essentials, remove all the clutter! In this case, those Kentucky Derby meets Gone With the Wind shades immediately found themselves in the nearest dumpster. Any other bauble was removed and I was left with the one solid piece.
Step 3) Prepare to Meet Your Fumes
Find a spray paint with the finish you are looking for (flat, satin, semi-gloss, or gloss are your options). In this case I went for a pure black gloss. Oil (Enamel or Direct to Metal) paints will require no priming but are harder to remove if a spray-happy accident were to occur. This requires clean up with thinner.
If you buy a latex, PLEASE PRIME! You will not be happy if you don't and I will not show you any sympathy.
In this case, since I was spraying over metal, I opted for the oil option. If ever in doubt, ask me. As my friends in the hood say, I can hook you up. (P.S. I grew up in Hepburn, SK. I don't know anyone in the hood. But I'd sure like to!)
Spray in a well-ventilated (badly ventilated if you'd like to opt to experience hallucinations) area. Set the item on some old cardboard and have at 'er! Follow the instructions on the can with how far away to hold the nozzle, etc. Let it dry, and do a second coat if needed.
Step 4) Have Patience, Have Patience, Don't Be in Such a Hurry
Now comes the hard part, finding the shades to match perfectly. Please never be fooled into thinking projects like these just materialize. Many hours are spent on the hunt for the perfect fit!
If you find something, take it home and try it. If it's horrid, return it and try again. Repeat process.
Step 5) Enjoy
Lamp bases: $10
Spray paint: $4.00
Total cost of purchase (for 2 lamps): $44.00
Average price for table lamp: $80
Total monies saved: $58
And that, my friends, is how its done.