Updating an Old Lamp

After redoing my guest room, my lamp did not match the decor. Instead of purchasing a new one, I simply covered an existing one with fabric to match the room. This is a great way to recycle an outdated lamp.


Approximate Time Less than 30 minutes



  1. First, remove the shade from the lamp.
  2. Center lamp base on piece of fabric large enough to cover all sides of the base to just below the socket.
  3. Using a craft knife, cut a small "x" near the base where the cord is located. Thread the cord through the cut. (You can apply Fray Chek around the slit if fabric frays easily.)
  4. Gather fabric loosely around base. Arrange fabric so that the folds and gathers are evenly spaced around the lamp.
  5. Secure with a rubber band at the neck of the lamp just below the socket.
  6. Fold raw edges of fabric to the wrong side (in towards lamp, and tuck under the rubber band.
  7. Tie ribbon or cord around neck of lamp to cover the rubber band.
  8. Reattach the lamp shade.

By Momof1 from Wilkesboro, NC

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It's easy (and cheap) to give new life to a boring ceramic lamp. I purchased the ceramic lamp on sale for $4.99. I used a sponge (cut into a square and rectangle with a utility knife) and a foam stencil brush, some acrylic paint, and some spray gloss.

Decorated Ceramic Lamp

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August 27, 2005

Lamps are so expensive now, so reinventing an old lamp with a new look saves a lot of money.

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February 20, 2008

Let's bring life back to an old lamp. Spray entire lamp, the base and the shade. Let dry. Take ribbon and tie around the base or tie around the shade. Glue one flower or two onto the shade.

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

Can anyone give me suggestions on how to change the look of my bathroom vanity light without having to call in an electrician? It's an ugly ceiling mount over my sink. The lighting itself is good because it hangs down near the walls on each side. It is flush mounted lighting that is not good over a vanity because of the shadows it puts on your face.

Also all the ceiling fixtures I've seen are not for vanities. Have you seen any pretty fixtures that hang this way? I've checked the home improvement stores and looked online and haven't seen anything. Any way to change this look? I don't see how, but my ThriftyFun friends have came up with other solutions that I'd have never thought of.

By weinerdog41 from Ft. Worth,


February 28, 20140 found this helpful

Perhaps you could cover (wrap around) the chain with things such as garland, ribbons, bows, flowers, etc. That would hide the chain and make it look pretty. You could even do seasonal themes like Christmas, Valentines Day, etc. Good luck!

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January 4, 2010

I took a lamp I've had since the early 70's that was out of style color-wise, so this is what I did to reinvent a more fashionable lamp with a pearled finish.

Updating an Old Lamp

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