What a Bright Idea – a brass lamp makeover

Most of my married life, I’ve had attic decor – Sean and I both brought some things in to our marriage home. And for the most part, we’ve had what we needed. Other than that, we’ve either purchased a needed item (like a couch), made it (like a side table and entertainment center [I’m lucky to be married to a crafty man]) or reworked something that we already had or that we were given.

One such item was these lamps.

I remember when my mom bought them, my dad encouraged her to buy some for the entire house, since she like them so much. So glad she didn’t listen to that logic.

Otherwise I would have spent all day fixing these suckers up.

Don’t get me wrong – it was an super easy process. Sandpaper, Textured Spray paint (the kind for metal) and newspaper were all it took.

But one can only have so many attractive lamps around their home before running out of room. Or something like that.

So sanding and wiping down two lamps was entirely manageable.

I swear, I’m not giving anyone the finger. Apparently, I have some inner British to channel.

Or maybe I just have sandpaper dust issues that make me avoid touching it too much.


Once I sanded (very lightly sanded… nothing major; just to hold the paint better) and wiped, I got to spray. It took me two cans to do these lamps, though I would have preferred a third to touch up some of the thinner spots.

But even with the thin spots, they are a vast improvement over the polished brass from before.

But I’m screwed if polish brass comes back in style.

Finish it off with a lover-ly tassel from The Nester, and it’s a beauty to behold.


  1. Great job! I *do* like your square lampshades, too…

    Have a wonderful week ahead

  2. Those lamps look great..the tassle makes it perfect!
    -sandy toe

  3. T with Honey says

    What do you mean the polished brass lamps I inherited when my grandparents died are not in style? No way! It’s not possible. How could something I inherited 13 years ago be out of fashion?

    Yours look so pretty that I’m tempted to add yet another item to the home improvements list. Only tempted though cause that list is LONG.

  4. Good job girl and I love those shades!

  5. I did the same thing to my lamps, but I didn’t sand them beforehand – just sprayed away with my Rustoleum hammered brown spray paint. That was more than 4 years ago, and they still look great!

  6. Angela Musk says

    They look so great! Don’t you just LOVE taking something old, something that holds meaning for you, and making it look new again?! LOVE IT!

  7. Do you realize, however, that you have missed a golden opportunity to get shades that were painted with a Genii emerging from the top of the polished bottle? Bygones.

    In all seriousness, the redecoration of them is extremely classy. Nicely done.

  8. Antique Mommy says

    I love design on a dime ideas. A can of spray paint can fix a myriad of design woes. Sometimes I add a little clearance bin beaded fringe to my lamp shades with some fabric glue or hang a pretty tassle from the neck of the lamp. They look great!

  9. I’m a total design on a dime babe. Love the new look for the lamps. I did something similar to some my mom gave me that were all “Antique gold”…you know that really pukey color? blech. Mine are black to match my decor – but I LOVE how the brown with speckles turned out – might have to look at doing that! :)

    And I love your tassel from Nester. :)

  10. Those turned out great! And pretty shades too! I would love to get new lamps. This inspires me to grab some at the thrift shop and do the same!

  11. BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) says

    Those look lovely! We have a serious case of attic decor with a touch of hand me downs from my mom. ;)

  12. The Nester says

    I LOVE these lamps! And people, I got to see them in person and they look just as good in real life! You have convinced me to try some of that spray paint!

    Miss you girl!

  13. Yay! I love updating lamps with that metallic spray paint!

    They look fantastic!


  14. Kimba @ A Soft Place to Land says

    Gah! That last comment was me.

  15. Gray Matters says

    They turned out great – now I’m on the hunt for something brassy and shiny!

  16. look at you go ;-)

  17. you just turned my computer screen into HGTV…incredibly creative

  18. spaaroundtheworld says

    Don’t you just love lamps, can never have too many, they make your room look so cozy. Thanks for the inspiration, I once tried to paint some sunglasses worthy shiny brass lamps, but couldn’t get it to stick. Now I know how. Awesome job, Candace

  19. Be-oo-tee-ful!!!!

  20. Way to channel Martha. I can’t believe that transformation!! Inspired now!!

  21. I did this with a brass lamp, too, and now I enjoy it so much. Easy, peasy (I didn’t sand…just sprayed).

  22. So cool! They turned out great.

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