Ok, so this is kind of my first DIY hack… I found this amazingly awesome lamp shade that I LERVE at Lowes on Saturday. I had been looking to replace my 10 year old, extremely juvenile, multi-color multi-armed lamp circa my college days, which finally took the midnight train to Splitsville a few weeks ago. Since then, I have been changing and putting away clothes in my closet room for a week by flashlight. (It’s always an adventure at my house!) I thought it was probably time to accept the loss and make a new purchase.
The only problem with this amazingly awesome lamp shade was that it was for a standard lamp. The shade has the three metal arms which connect to the top of the shade and then bend down almost to the bottom of the shade where they meet a big ring. You sit this ring around the top of your lamp and then screw the bulb in through the ring, and the bulb keeps the shade in place. Which after doing some research, I found out was called a “Slip UNO Fitter”. What I really needed for this light kit was a “Spider Fitter”. Silly me!
This normally would not be a big deal, but I had been dreaming of putting a pendant light in there with an amazing drum shade. Drum shades are kind of a big thing right now, and normally I don’t follow the “in” crowd, but I really REALLY liked this shade! Chevrons are so dreamy!
So to make a long story short… this lamp shade was not meant to be used as a pendant lamp. Sadness.
But Travis, being the hacker that he usually is, thought he could find a way to make it work. But alas, when we arrived home… his only idea did not pan out. So that’s where my big ol’ brains came in! And it didn’t even involve duct tape OR zip ties!
Get yourself the following:
- A Slip UNO Fitter lamp shade you wish to use for a pendant light
- A pendant light kit (available just about everywhere lamps are sold)
- Some thin, twistable yet durable wire (garden wire worked out just dandy!)
- A washer that fits on the swag light kit
- Some wire cutters or anything that will cut through the wire you’ve chosen
So this is where it get’s tricky for me to explain, even though it’s SUPER easy to do and took me less than 3 minutes to do. I’m just new to this whole DIY, step by step instructions, explaining thing!
- Cut three pieces of wire the exact same length. (If your lamp has four arms inside the shade, use four wires. If it only has two, only use two wires etc!)
I cut mine to be about 12 inches. This is what is going to hang your shade from the pendant kit.
- Using about 1-2 inches of your wire, wrap each piece of wire around the washer once or twice and then twist it so it will not come off the washer.
(Like how you use a twist tie on a bread bag!) But make sure your wires are all the still the same length! You may have to unwrap and re-wrap a time or two, but make sure your wires are the same length, so the shade hangs evenly in the end.
- At the other end of the wires, the part that’s not attached to the washer, measure one inch, then bend the wire to mark that point. Do this with each of the wires.
- Now “twist tie” these ends of the wires to the “arms” inside the lamp shade. One wire for each “arm”.
- Unscrew the “cap” on the pendant kit, slide the washer with the wires attached to it onto the threaded piece and then screw the cap back on.
At this point, you’re pretty much finished! You can hang your light as is. I thought about cutting off the extra lamp ring and the excess length of arms on the inside of the lamp, but eventually I plan to use that to affix something to the bottom to serve as a “diffuser” shade so you wouldn’t be able to see up into the shade where the light bulb is. It gives it more of a “finished” look. But at this point, I was just eager to get some light in my closet room, so I hung mine up and will put the shade in later.