DIY best of: lighting projects

Lighting has to be one of our all-time favorite topics — we’ve recently held crafting events in honor of lighting, picked out our favorite chandeliers in homes and even delved into the history of chandeliers. You might call it a little obsessive. But if you’re a renter, updating lighting — whether an overhead fixture or ambient lighting — is an easy way to make a dramatic change. Grace has been thinking about what kind of lighting to put in her new apartment, so I thought I’d go through our DIY files and pull out the best of our lighting projects. — Amy A.

Image above: All you need is wax paper, ribbon and a hanging-planter basket and you have a capiz-shell chandelier from Brenna’s paper capiz-shell chandelier project.

Image above: You could scour flea markets for a vintage version or just DIY your own cork lamp.

Image above: Filament light pendants

CLICK HERE for more DIY lighting projects!

Image above: Planter turned pendant lamp

Image above: Framed industrial lights

Image above: Lindsay Adelman’s industrial-style chandelier

Image above: Need a way to use your mason jar collection? These mason jar lights are one of my favorite lighting projects!

Image above: Knitted lampshade

Image above: Simple Ikea hack for sculptural pendant lamps

Image above: A simple update to a decorative light switch cover

Image above: Twinkle blackboard

Image above: Similar concept as the blackboard lights above but with a piece of wood (DIY twinkle panel).

Image above: Pendant lamp from a planter

Image above: Wood veneer lampshade

Image above: Update a box storage lamp with decoupage.

  1. Love them all! I’m trying to decide what light to put up over a table in my living room. I think I’m going to try DIYing a cage light.

  2. such a lovely selection of lighting…

  3. Amber Grace says:

    I am in love with that first chandelier… I might have to try that ASAP… I’ve got some really great scrapbooking punches I picked up at Liquidation World. They were $18.99 and I got them for (gasp) .49 cents each!! Can you believe it?? They were 90% off the lowest price. It blew my mind so I bought one of every one they had – some are rather large and really unique shapes… Can’t wait to play around. I wonder if you could make this out of vellum instead of wax paper for a sturdier material? Can’t wait to try it! :)

  4. Mandy says:

    I love the cork lamp!

  5. natalie says:

    I am smitten! I adore lamps and probably have too many for my home (hehe), but I love new ideas and these are fantastic!

  6. Rachel says:

    Just posted about an awesome ikea hack for lampshades. It cost a total of 15 buckaroos but looks more like something that was over 1,500! Its not my design so i can say that :)

    Anyway, i love the mason jars and the knitted lampshade – if only i could knit!!

  7. I love the (faux)capiz shell chandelier…it is so gorgeous…and lamp with a knitted shade…just the cutest thing for the bedside table!! it must give the most gorgeous muted light!! lovely post amy!! xx meenal

  8. Jenn says:

    OMG! The first lamp is PER-FECT for covering the awful, awful, totally fug dining room chandelier in our apartment. I’ve been trying to figure out a solution for that terrible thing for months. And so inexpensive! I’m going to run out and buy a circle punch today! :D

  9. hena tayeb says:

    I love the first chandelier.. thanks for the diy.

  10. Chris Moores says:

    Amazed by the creativity here. I was on a honey store once and they used old beehive boxes as light fixtures suspended in air with bulbs within them. It was so brilliant and unique I had to take a picture.

    1. grace says:


      was that the savannah bee company? they do that and i LOVE IT.

      grace :)

  11. Laura says:

    I’m so happy you posted this! I just spent the morning looking for DIY lamp projects. One of my favorite DIY lamps that I’ve seen was one made from an old flute…it’s a fun a idea but a bit pricy for me.

  12. Great picks – all are lovely!!

  13. Laura H says:

    Thank you for this post! I’ve been in a total DIY rut and this totally sparked the creativity. 4 mason jar lights done this afternoon :)

  14. cherade9 says:

    I really like the cage lamp shader and the remodded IKEA shades. So simple, yet affective!

    I have five lamps waiting to be rewired and have shades made. Two are matching West German ceramic table lamps and another one is a similar floor lamp. I’m trying to make fairly authentic reproductions of the original out of hessian and embroidery. The other two are odd vintage bases I pinched from my Mum’s. I have two crochet designs in mind for them!

  15. Great job! they are really inspiring. :)

  16. Jesse Lu says:

    I totally made my own versions of the sculptural felt lampshades. One of the most rewarding DIY projects ever!

  17. Love the the jar lights! My mom would love those!

  18. Chris Moores says:

    Grace, Yes it was. You know your stuff! ;-) It was an impressive store to begin with but what a touch.


  19. I love the first one! May just have to DIY that for my upcoming wedding… and it would be so easy to repurpose at home!

  20. Some great DIY lamps here, the pendant lamp is very nice!

    The light switch cover is pretty funky too.

  21. Sarah Jane says:

    Some great ideas! Definitely want to use some and can’t wait to share a few on my blog. Thanks!

  22. I love the industrial lights.


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