Our bedside lamp situation has gradually deteriorated over the past few years. First we had two comically mismatched lamps (neither of which provided good reading light), then somehow we were down to one (my desk lamp from college), and then the bulb in that one burned out. Well, I never got around to buying a new bulb. It required a strange size of bulb, the specifics of which I can never remember when I find myself at the hardware store.
Months passed with no bedside lamp, which meant one of us always had to get out of our nice comfy bed when bedtime reading time was over to turn off the overhead light. Not fun.
Eventually I decided to forget the light bulb altogether and started trolling the thrift stores.
I discovered that matching lamps are about as rare as unicorns, but several weeks into my search I did eventually find a set. Behold, my Grown Up Person Lamps:
I guess they must have looked ok from a distance? But close up, it was a whole 'nother story. Folks, these lamps were gross. Besides the ugly brass bases, the shades were dirty, stained, and possessing of an odor that I didn't care to get close enough to properly identify. Seriously, I didn't even want them in the car with me. At $4 each, I think I overpaid. I stashed them in the basement as soon as I got home until I had time to spruce them up a bit.
Step 1: Ditch the shades. I briefly considered trying to clean them, then I took a second look at them and decided TO HECK WITH ALL THAT.
Step 2: Lightly sanded the bases so the paint would have something to stick to, then put the electrical cords in baggies and sealed them shut with painters' tape. Ditto for the light socket and on/off switch.
Step 3: Put on a couple coats of Rustoleum Universal Metallic Aged Copper spray paint.
I wanted to pretty them up with some stenciling, but I didn't have any stencils. Obviously I had to make some real quick because I was on a roll and didn't want to break my stride. I used this for inspiration:
That's my bathroom ceiling. It's the only pretty thing in there.The stenciling thing turned out to be kind of a pain in the tush so I ended up free-handing a lot of it.
The end result:
They don't scald my eyes with ugliness, they both work, and the light quality is perfect for bedtime reading. I pronounce them a success.
And that's how I finally got my Grown Up Person Matching Bedside Lamps. The End.