January 9, 2012

Ugly Lamp Gets A Make Over

I have always loved vintage/antique tea tins that have been converted into lamps. Since we are in the process of updating our den/kitchen, I thought it would be a good time to purchase one.  Every time I found one that sent my heart into high gear, the price would be WAY too high.  I  walked away from soooo many ‘perfect’ ones because of price!  

I wanted one like these beauties
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                Live Auctions                                        1st Dibs  (over $1000.00)

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Country Living                                                                                       French Accent

Okay, I had no choice – If I wanted a tea tin lamp I would have to make one myself – from scratch!   So, a cheap lamp with the ‘round tea canister’ shape was added to my list of things that I began looking for on my junking excursions.


It took several months, but at last I found one – 

I thought $8.00 was high for such an old ugly lamp,
but the shape was absolutely perfect for my tea canister lamp.
I took all of the wiring out and dismantled the lamp.  After giving it a background of black paint,  I made a stencil of a laurel wreath.  I use gold paint to stencil the wreath and also to add the numbers, using a purchased stencil.  The top and bottom bands are gold leaf.  When everything was dry, I gave it a protective coat of Annie Sloan’s dark wax which also helped to age the bright gold and give it the vintage look that I wanted.
I didn’t want to reuse the metal piece on the top of the original lamp,  so I had to replace some of the rod lengths and also find something simple to take the place of the original decorative piece.  After finally getting it put together and rewired, I set out to find a shade for it.  Luckily, a vendor at Old Bank Antiques (where my booths are) was having a 1/2 price sale on everything and they had a huge assortment.  I paid $9.00 for the shade.

- At last -
here is my faux vintage tea tin lamp
Lamp Redo 004
Close up of the design 
- I love gold on black -

Lamp Redo 014
This was a fun make-over

Lamp Redo 017
It looks great in the den and…

Lamp Redo 015
it only cost $17.00!

Follow me to these fun parties :
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Coastal Charm               Savvy Southern Style                            Ivy & Elephants                 From My Front Porch To Yours

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The Shabby Creek Cottage         No Minimalist Here                           2805                                  Common Ground


  1. Rhonda, that looks fantastic! Great job! Your patience definitely paid off in finding the lamp to transform. Love the wreath design.

  2. Rhonda- What a great looking makeover. I love it. It might have taken a while to find the perfect lamp but it was well worth the wait. LOVE IT~ xo Diana

  3. Very clever of you! I like your version every bit as much as the ones you showcased. Great job!

  4. Great job, Rhonda! I love lamps and yours turned out so nice. I struggle a little with the rewiring but have tackled some of it this Fall. It's tough to get them all put back together sometimes! $17 is a fabulous price for such a pretty lamp. Hope you're well and enjoying the new year.

  5. Such a beautiful lamp for only $17...you did a wonderful job on it and thanks for sharing it at my NTT party. Those tigers better get it GOING!!!


  6. Your lamp turned out beautiful! Great transformation! And you can't beat that price! :)

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  8. Rhonda, You did a wonderful job recreating a antique tea tin lamp. I love it! Thanks for linking to my party.

  9. You did a wonderful job & such a great project! It's such fun to see what other people do & the inspiration that give.

  10. I love those lamps, too and yes, they are pricey. I love what you did with yours. Looks great.

  11. I love it. I have a lamp with a similar shape in our foyer. It used to be an old cream can, and my mother tole painted it. Then a lamp maker transformed it into a lamp. Don't you love having things that no one else does?

  12. Does much justice and looks rather good. From the heart.


  13. Hi, Rhonda. I love these lamps too. I have the lamp on the lower left side with the "28" on it. Bought it from Pottery Barn, full price, since it was the cheapest I'd ever seen a lamp like this - even a reproduction. Your's is gorgeous and at an even better price! Great job.

  14. Rhonda, OMGosh! Your lamp is fabulous and I'm lovin' it. I know what you mean. I've seen them around and the price was astronomical. OK...now I'm going to be on the look out for one to re-do. :) Thanks for sharing how you transformed it. Very professional look.
    I'm a new follower.

  15. Wow! I love that lamp. What a great idea. Also I wanted to say that your dogs are just adorable!

  16. That is beyond awesome Rhonda!!!

  17. This is really a terrific makeover! Luv it! Thank you for sharing this creative post at Potpourri Friday!

  18. I love it! It really does pay to be patient and wait for just the right piece to come along. I happy to hear you held out and didn't pay those awful prices. Great job!

  19. That looks just fabulous, Rhonda. What you didn't want to spend $1,000 at 1stdibs? I think it's funny you thought $8 was too high--it's just perfect, now.

  20. Rhonda,

    Beautiful job! Your talent to turn other people's "trash" into treasures is unmatched. I have been searching for wooden lamps to redo like Pottery Barn's architectural salvage lamps. Unfortunately, when I did come across a pair at Good Will, Thomas was with me and didn't see my vision. I returned the next day without him, but they were gone.

    Your Friend,

  21. wow Rhonda, this is amazing, LOVE this, and the black with the laurel stencil makes it look so high end, great job!!! xoxo

  22. That looks GREAT Rhonda! You did an awesome job on that make-over!!!

  23. Fantastic job...I like yours better. Patience does pay. I'm now following you with the new awesome Linky tool, so follow back so we can connect, Lori

  24. I'm a new linky follower! Hope you will be too!

  25. I like what you did -- I've always said, if you can't afford what you want -- then replicate it yourself! I've been fortunate enough to find two -- a big one and a little one at very reasonable prices -- not real tea tins but rather made for lamps I'm sure. But like you I've always coveted one . . . I think they're timeless and not trendy at all!

  26. Hi Rhonda, love your blog! And what you did to the lamp is great, very inspired. I am your newest follower, until next time, Tammy


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