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Butter Churn Heirloom Turned Lamp


I'd never made my own lamp until this project, so I'm really excited to share this project with you today! The wiring has always intimidated me, but honestly, now I wonder why. Here, let me show you how it's done. I used materials that I had on hand and/or found for free.
My mother gave me this heirloom butter churn a couple summers ago when we were visiting her. She never had the metal churner, so I've been using it for a sunflower vase. It's heavy and sturdy, perfect for large flowers. 

One day while I was out searching for a lamp for my hall console table at TJ Maxx Home Goods, I saw one that was made out of a butter churn jar just like mine! I was thrilled and knew then that I had to learn how to make my own lamp.
The materials I used came from a lamp I found in a free pile at a yard sale I was at a week or so earlier. I picked it up thinking the wiring and hardware would come in handy to make into some hanging lamp or something one day. 
I broke off the ceramic base that was already cracked, and the rest proved to be simple to take apart. 
 I also purchased another lamp for the shade and hardware to hold it, at our local thrift store for $2.50 on half price day. 
My husband then instructed me on how to disconnect the wiring so that it could be modified to fit.
Ready to make one yourself? Here's how it's done:
1) mark the coordinating wire and screw. (These must be matched back up with reassembly.) 
2) Loosen screws to free wires. 
3) Thread wiring through lamp base (in this case the butter churn lid) and lampshade holder (not shown)
4) Tighten wires back into place and tighten base screw to secure bulb base. 
 5) Test lamp
6) Add shade, plug in and enjoy!
 *NOTE: in order to keep the lamp shade hardware secure, electrical tape was wrapped around the underside of the base threading to fit snuggly into the hole of the lid. The cord lifts up through the opening of the jar and helps secure the wooden base into place. This proved tight enough not to slide or tilt.
 I love how the cord is hidden through the spindles of my table. It was the perfect remedy for my decorating dilemma and it only cost me $4.50 in materials. 
Don't you love a great deal?!
 The best part about doing this project myself was that I didn't alter or ruin a family heirloom at all and the top can be lifted to display things in the bottom of the jar, if I desire.  

 If you have never tried wiring a lamp, I hope you will now that you see how easy it is to do. I thought it was quite a fun project, and hope my experience will help inspire you to do your own! 




4 comments:

  1. Great project and the lamp is so cute. Thanks for the info on how to do this.
    Kris

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Kris! It's so nice to get over my intimidations with some kinds of projects. Electrical definitely falls into this category. ;)

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  2. Michelle, I rewire a lot of lamps so I understand your enthusiasm when you created light! It is so easy, but I've had some stressful moments rewiring four-arm vintage floor lamps! You are going to hooked on this because the possibilities are endless. You may start collecting parts!

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    Replies
    1. Wow, how amazing!! I would love to see what you have done! ;)

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Can't wait to hear what you have to say, your comments always make my day!