It often seems like stylish light fixtures cost an arm and a leg, but this clever thrift hack proves that you can get a designer look on a budget. Using materials she had on hand, home influencer Brittany Smith took a pair of secondhand lamps and gave them a major glow up that reflects her modern farmhouse aesthetic and looks super sophisticated.
“I was inspired by other creators I saw transforming vases and lamps to achieve high-end looks for less,” Smith says of the plaster-like treatment. “I thought, ‘Hey, I can totally do that myself!’ Being able to breathe new life into something that looks like junk is so rewarding.”
Aside from the pair of lamps, which Smith scored on Facebook Marketplace for $30, all Smith needed to complete the project was some drywall spackle, a putty knife, gray chalk paint, and a bristle brush. Smith already had the supplies, but she estimates the total cost at $18, adding up to just $24 per lamp!
“I applied the spackle to the lamps with the putty knife, sort of like you would to ice a cake,” Smith explains. “Then I let it dry for 30 mins and smoothed over it with my hands. Once completely dry, I used the bristle brush and gray chalk paint and lightly brushed over it to give it more dimension — that’s it!”
Smith encourages others hoping to take on a similar project to pay close attention to lamp shape. “When looking for lamps for this project, I focused on the shape of the base rather than the color or texture,” she notes. “Metal and ceramic work well, but I would avoid wood, wicker, or anything porous. Also, if you don’t like the shade it comes with, you can always swap that out, too.”
Smith says that the project took her three hours in total, not including drying time. Still, though, she considers it to be an extremely easy DIY, regardless of one’s experience level. And she couldn’t be more thrilled with the end product. “I absolutely love the lamps,” she reflects. “They add so much character and style without breaking the bank!”