before and after

before & after: industrial sconce makeover

by Kate Pruitt

Lately, we’ve been really into metals here at D*S, but there are a few instances where metals can go wrong, and no metal walks that thin line between beautiful and tacky quite like brass. I’m sure we’ve all seen examples of good brass and bad brass. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what throws off the look, although we think super shiny brass looks best when contrasted with darker colors like charcoals, black or navy.

In the case of this wall sconce, we fully support Kristine’s decision to paint over the brass and swap out the shade; what’s more, we’re very impressed with the rusting job she’s done on the simple lamp cage. The result is a lovely, sophisticated, industrial sconce — a total transformation from the original, which was suffering from a bit of “granny style” (no offense, grannies!). The best part? This beautiful new look cost less than $40! Great job, Kristine! — Kate

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More before and after images after the jump . . .

Time: about 1 hour (plus paint drying time)

Cost: $20 (excluding the cost of Edison bulbs): $16 for the lamp guard cage and $4 worth of paint

Basic Steps

1. Paint sconce arm with iron paint. Allow to dry.

2. Paint plastic cage with iron paint. Allow to dry (30 minutes).

3. Paint plastic cage with second coat of iron paint. Allow to dry (1 hour).

4. Spray rust activator on cage using an atomizer in one fine coat. Allow to dry.

5. Assemble light and insert bulb.

6. Flip the switch and enjoy your awesome new industrial-style light!

If you don’t have a sconce, you could easily re-create this look with any standard ceiling pendant. The iron paint and rust activator is quite pricey, though you only need a tiny bit to give great coverage. Edison bulbs are not essential though do help complete the vintage industrial look. — Kristine

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