Friday, September 25, 2015

DIY Custom Light Fixture

**NOTE: If you're going to tackle this project, please, please, PLEASE turn off the power source before doing so. And if this is your first time working with electricity, ASK FOR HELP! I am not a professional, Eric did all of the wire work, so in reality I have no idea how these things go. Be safe not sorry people!**
One of my all time favorite details from the bathroom makeover is hands down the light fixture. I had seen the tutorial floating around the interweb for some time, but never had a reason to execute it until now. From the quirky branch-like arms, to the multiple clear globe bulbs, there's just so much whimsy I HAD to make it my own.

I first saw this light on the blogs Rain On A Tin Roof and Little Green Notebook. Their versions are shown below, both provided easy to follow instructions, and were great jumping off points for my own lighting creation. 

For my own light, I wanted it to have a decent amount of visual weight. When I began painting the walls, I debated about painting the ceiling the same color. The original color was on the ceiling as well as the walls, and I thought it looked fine, maybe even helped the small space appear larger. But black is intense, and when I finished, there was a moment of panic where I thought I had made a HUGE mistake. Did I just turn my bathroom into a cave? A swift text to my BFF explaining the problem, and she calmly put my nerves at ease explaining that if my new light had some impact, it would easily balance out the black ceiling. Bestie to the rescue!

Let's backtrack to what I originally started with. 

A moment of silence for the death of yet another boob light.....ok that's enough. 
The materials I needed to make the light include the following:

2. Three lamp bulb socket splitter - this is how I planned to expand my light and make it bigger.
3. Light bulb socket splitters for standard bulbs - I ordered 20 of these splitters, but only used 17 of them. 
4. Ceiling Medallion - just for a nice flourish!
5. 25-watt clear globe light bulbs - after building my light shape, I needed 24 bulbs, but ended up only using 18. 
Now time for the fun part. Assembling this light is pretty much a giant puzzle. Somehow all of these pieces need to fit together, while looking balanced, but also leaving room for the light bulbs.
Once I created the basic shape, I stuffed paper towels into each socket to protect the electrical parts, grabbed my favorite gold spray paint, and headed outside. 
It took a few coats, but I focused on how it looked from the top...or bottom once it's hung, since that's what people will see when they look up. Speaking of hanging, when Eric removed the old light, he discovered there was a metal box holding all the wires that probably shouldn't be removed. This wasn't exactly what I was hoping for, but once spray painted the same gold, it looked like it was intended to be there all along. 
Aall-purpose construction adhesive was used to attach the medallion to the ceiling, and it was like icing on the cake. Such a beautiful addition for such a small cost. You'll also notice the final shape isn't exactly the same as when I finished connecting all the socket splitters. As Eric installed the light, he disassembled it, and then slowly reassembled, turning on and off the power every once in awhile to make sure we weren't going to blow a fuse. Better safe than sorry! 
Was it more work than simply buying a new light? Of course.
Is it a little crazy looking? Maybe. 
But it's better to be absolutely RIDICULOUS, than absolutely BORING! :) 

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