I got these lamps forever ago, as in over a year ago, and have just been sitting on them waiting for just the right idea. Sometimes inspiration comes in the most unlikely places.
As in, Parents magazine, at Easter time. This is typically the magazine that I read to try to be a good parent, not for crafty inspiration, but sometimes you get a bit of both. For some reason, I looked at that string-wrapped-looking egg and thought not of eggs but, "I must do that to those lamps!"
I will admit that my first attempt at these babies turned out to be a big fail, because in my excitement over finally having a direction to go with this project, I neglected to first dull the glossy surface of the lamps before painting them. Don't do this. A few days later you will end up with a very sad situation on your hands.
The second time around, I dulled the surface of the lamps with a fine sandpaper, covered the sockets and cords with plastic bags and tape, and then spray painted them with a white primer.
When the primer was completely dry, I got some raffia, wet it slightly and wrung it out well because I wanted it to lay completely flat against the surface of the lamp, and started wrapping. I wanted a crisscrossing kind of look, so I alternated between wrapping it just around the middle, and wrapping it around the top and then under the bottom of the lamp. When I got to the end of the raffia, I carefully tucked it under one of the first strands that was pulled tightly so that the whole thing wouldn't unravel.
I then pulled out my trusty Mediterranean spray paint (by Valspar), and got to work. I got down level with the lamp (meaning on the ground, but if you could elevate your lamp it will make this part easier), because I wanted to spray straight onto the raffia, as opposed to spraying from a top angle where the paint might run down underneath the raffia a bit.
I did 2 light coats, mostly because I was still nervous about the paint running. But it turns out that this was just enough.
When the paint was dry, I carefully peeled off the raffia strands, and held my breath. Luckily, dulling the surface this time worked! No little maroon spots were glaring up at me, just a fun blue and white pattern.
I love the texture that this approach provided! I followed up with a satin polyurethane for protection.
What do you think? Aren't they fun?
I don't have a lampshade "before" picture, but it was a basic shade that was yellowed with age and had a few stains. I covered it with some white burlap, which more than covered the stains, still gave me the light glow that I was looking for, and added just a bit more texture to the mix.
I'm pretty pleased with the results. This is my first venture into anything to do with lamps, so now going to start looking at the other lamps around my house and to see how I can change them to give that space a little boost.