Thursday, July 19, 2012

Cupcake Liner Orb Light

Here's another DIY light fixture I recently made.  We haven't hung it yet, but I'll post updated pics as soon as we get it placed in the room.  Our "music" room has a really dinky, teeny-tiny baby fan in it that I am chomping at the bits to say goodbye to...I wanted something fun and funky in there because I'm going for an eclectic, colorful vibe.  Definitely not a little-girl-fan situation.

This was another idea I found on Pinterest, and it was really easy to make.  All you need is a paper lantern (I bought mine at Pier 1 for around $6 a long time ago), a pendant light kit, a hot glue gun, and a few packs of cupcake liners. I used jumbo white and regular sized brown ones for this project, but they come in all different colors and designs.  They even have these super cute ones that look like flowers that would be adorable in a little girl's room... but I digress...

Anyway, you simply start with your paper lantern and cupcake liners and hot glue them side by side, starting from the top and working your way around the lantern till you have it completely covered.  Pretty straight-forward and simple.

You can put them as close or as far apart as you like.  I put mine pretty close together and kind of squished them together as I went to give it a more organic feel.  Here it is after the first layer was all glued on.  I set it on top of my table lamp in the living room so you get the whole 'lit-up' effect.  Pretty, huh?

I really liked the solid white (I'm thinking I may do another all-white one in the kitchen) but the room where I'm hanging this has more yellowy beige earth tones in it, and I don't think bright white would look right in there, so I added these little brownish-tan mini cupcake liners to warm the color up a bit.  You just do the same thing with these, gluing them inside the larger cupcake liners.

Once I got all of these glued on, I put it over my table lamp and decided that, while it looked kinda cool, it wasn't exactly what I was going for.  I think the mini cupcake liners were a little too mini.  It sort of ended up looking like cells dividing under a microscope.

 Back to the drawing board... I pulled all the mini liners out (I wouldn't advise this... it was pretty time consuming and annoying).

I found some larger, regular sized plain brown cupcake liners at Wal-Mart and bought a couple packs.  Then I glued these on just like the mini ones.  I like this size inside the jumbo liners... they fit a lot better than the mini ones.

Ahhh... mucho more better-o.

I was pretty excited over my DIY light (as you can see from the gazillion-and-one pictures I took of it).  I can't wait to install it in my music room!  I'll do an updated post when I have it all put together so you can see the full dramatic effect.  Until next time....

Monday, July 16, 2012

Clothespin Light Fixture

Sorry for the long lapse in blog entries... we've been really busy getting unpacked and cleaning after the move.  It's still a mess, but we're getting there, slowly but surely.

Anyway, I wanted to post about the new clothespin light fixture I made for the laundry room.  I'm so excited about it!  My first ever DIY Pinterest copy/challenge!  I did not come up with this idea on my own (I rarely have original ideas) I have to give credit where credit is due...I shamelessly copied this idea from one of my favorite blogs,  Anyway, here's what I did:

I started by purchasing hardware cloth, 22 gauge wire, and 6 packs of 100 count clothespins.  You'll also need some kind of wire cutters to cut the hardware cloth and 22 gauge wire to your desired size...I used a pair of tin snips.

Next, I eyeballed the size of the fixture I wanted (There was a boob light in the laundry area and I decided to just take off the globe and use the existing wiring and light bulbs to save me having to buy a new light kit).  I wanted it to be approximately the same/slightly larger diameter as the existing light fixture.


Bye-bye, boob light! 
(And yes, that IS the technical term for this kind of light fixture.)

Next, I cut my wire to the desired diameter and length.  This was actually the hardest part for me.  Your hand gets kinda tired after cutting all those wires and trying to wrangle the roll of hardware cloth into a cutting position.  If you have an extra pair of hands to help you hold it down while you cut, it would make it a lot easier.  Once the hardware cloth was cut, I took my 22 gauge wire and just wrapped it around the ends to hold it together and make a complete circle.  

TIP: For this clothespin configuration, make sure you have an EVEN number of squares or your design won't come out right.  Mine had 88 squares all the way around.

Then, I just started clipping on the clothespins!  This went really fast and was the easiest part of this project.  Start from the bottom so you don't get tangled up, and simply alternate your rows, skipping a row in between each layer.

Once my part was finished, I handed it off to Daniel to figure out how to hang it.  I'll have to have him blog about the contraption he made to hang it with, because I'm not exactly sure how he made it.  All I know is it looks like a metal cross that screws into the existing light fixture and then has wires that hook onto the hardware cloth.  You can also wire it and hang the fixture from the wire by hooks screwed into the ceiling.  (That's how they did it at  You would need pretty heavy duty hooks and wire though, because it's actually fairly heavy.


I love the soft glow it gives off through the clothespins, and the design it makes on the ceiling and walls!

I used approximately 576 clothespins for this project.  Now, every time I walk through the laundry room, I just stare at the ceiling, grinning like an idiot, and turn the light on and off just to admire my handiwork!  :o)