Focal Potential: A DIY Light Fixture Project

Necessity and sticker shock is the mother of all DIY projects.  If I search for an item and either can’t locate it or can’t bring myself to shell out $$$$ in order to make it mine a DIY light fixture project is in the making.  At times I succeed with the project, other times I exceed all expectations, and plenty of times it fails miserably. I’m rolling the dice on this one.

DIY light fixture project

Italian scroll chandeliers cause inspiration to tug at the creative part of my brain. The fixture style is lovely and wildly popular, but the sticker shock gives pause. Ouch!  Truth be told, the drops and the finial are the true eye catchers of the piece. A quick search landed me in a more affordable neighborhood. Gorgeous hand painted chandelier drops from Aidan Gray and a Tara Shaw Italian gilded tassel finial from Layla Grayce will be added to the shopping cart if this “eye”dea of mine falls flat. Here’s what I’m thinking~

Williamsburg chandelier

The crystal chandelier is pretty much pristine sans burned out bulb.  I found the fixture on eBay six years ago thinking it would be perfect for a client. When it arrived I immediately knew it was staying out of inventory.  It’s moving to the dining room.

foyer light fixture

The 12 light Williamsburg chandelier is an inherited left over from the original dining room design.  I added the shades last year with pleasing decorative success, but talk about further darkening the room. Personally I love it, but my camera and aging eyes hate the thing. I’ve studied and studied the fixture with a modifying intent. Paint it?  No. Lose the shades?  No.  Move it to the foyer?  Yes! That’s a start, but I want more for this chandelier.

decorative wood finial

We measured the clearance in the foyer noting the links would have to be removed to eliminate any head to fixture contact.  Hurdle #1 cleared. I’ve Googled till I can Google no more with very limited success in locating wooden carved chandelier drops. I asked Dave the Builder if he could channel his inner MacGyver to come up with an idea for the chandelier drops and decorative finial. How about…

chandelier parts

Dave found these craft finials at Lowe’s.  The mixed Oak craft finial (top left) is $2.98 and the Early American table leg (bottom right) is $1.48.

Okay, the upfront cost is minimal.

The plan is to create drops out of the table legs by removing the screws with vise-grip pliers, replacing with cup holder hooks, and staining with an umber or antique bronze to create the desired finish.  A distressed effect is also under consideration.  The craft finial will replace the center ring.  We will retrofit it with a new screw to match the opening size of the chandelier, screw it in, and hope it fulfills my decorative dreams.

It’s well worth the try.

Show & Tell

2 thoughts on “Focal Potential: A DIY Light Fixture Project”

  1. So how did it come out???? I have been trying to find the same finials for years now. Please publish pics or send to me.

  2. Well, Leslie, the vision was far more superior than the outcome. I tried diligently to make the larger finial of the two choices come out to resemble the chandelier drops associated with Italian chandeliers but it was an epic DIY fail (or at least I thought so). I did find a set of 12 in gray 5.5 inches high x .5 inches wide x .5 inches deep on Amazon and a set of 6 at Aidan Gray Home. Thinking it might be best to order.

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