Transforming Vintage Lamps

This is The Tale of Two Uglies Who Turned into Babes! Once Upon a Time, we stumbled up a pair of blue darlings at the Antique Mall and thought, “Great bones. Bad hair day!” They looked so pitiful, but we knew there was potential, so here’s what we did!

Too often people default to the white lampshade, but for lamps like these, white does zilch to make them amazing. It washes them out, and they somehow end up looking like the cliche sixty something men who try to dress like they’re still 35. No bueno.

But by adding flat black shades and killer, unexpected lime green finials, these lamps go from zero to hero! BaBOOM!

Remember that when choosing your harp, you want to make sure the base of the shade falls low enough to cover the lamp’s “guts” but not so low that it covers any fun details! *Notice where ours stops; it’s well below the socket and just barely covers the top wire detail. Also a drum shade is usually about 1.5 times bigger than the wides part of the base – so our shade is 13″ in diameter and the widest part of the lamp base is 8″.

Finials are the jewelry of your lamp so choose the best you can afford and make them big enough to be noticed. Think diamonds: Why settle for a carat when you could have a rock that hurts your joints? These are chartreuse, raw-edge stone darlings that are distinct enough to stack up to the base without competing!

If you don’t have time to go on a physical search in an antiques mall or flea market, check out some of our favorite online resources for vintage pieces. We love looking through Chairish, Etsy and Ebay for great steals.

After a quick search, we found two additional pairs of lamps that we thought were makeover worthy.  See what a black shade and a fabulous finial can do to quickly make them red carpet ready! We have provided two finial options for each lamp because we just couldn’t pick a favorite. (PS – the yellow lamps are $200 for the pair, umm, yes please!!)

vintage lampsOrange Lamps | Lampshade | Light Blue Finial | Royal Blue Finial

Yellow Lamp Story Montage

Yellow Lamps | Lampshade | Purple Finial | Pink Finial

All in, my blue lamps ended up costing about $125 each. What the WHAT?! Yeah, that’s a nutty great deal, and it goes to show that Ugly Ducklings can always turn into Swans. Fairy Tales do come true!




Buying Guide