Turning a Glass Vase Into a Lamp Tutorial

Turning a Glass Vase Into a Lamp Tutorial by Aaron

Hey y’all!  I’m Aaron and I blog at The Thrifty Abode.  I’m a wife, mother, and teacher and I blog about my attempts at creating a beautiful home on a small budget.  I’m pretty much a newbie blogger so I’m super excited to be guesting on such a popular and established blog!  Thanks for having me Cassity!

Turn a vase into a lamp #tutorial


I absolutely love finding a bargain or a knock-off that looks exactly like an item from Pottery Barn, West Elm, or ______________(fill in your favorite inspiring, but out of budget store here).   What’s even better is creating the item from things I already own and a couple things I found at a hardware store.

That’s exactly what I did with my glass jug and $18 I spent at Lowe’s.

I turned this:

 Into this:

I’d been working on refreshing my living room and looking for a cheaper version of one of these lamps.

In all of my searching I never found one.  I’d had the glass jug pictured above for years and I started wondering how difficult it could be to turn it into a lamp.  The only difference between my $15 jug and the $100 + lamps was a hole and some wiring.

I knew that bottle lamp kits were sold at Lowe’s so all I had to do was figure out how to put a hole in my jug.  With a little research I found out that I needed a ceramic cutting drill bit.  I made a trip to Lowe’s and picked up the kit and bit (I got the 5/16″) for $18.

I got my supplies home and got drilling!  I put some tape on the jug because I was nervous about it cracking.  Thank goodness it didn’t crack, but it did take about five minutes of drilling to make a hole big enough for the cord to fit.
After the hole was made, all I had to do was follow the instructions on the lamp kit packaging (it’s surprisingly easy).  I only had to make one adjustment.  The stoppers that are included in the kit were all too small for the opening of my jug, so I used a little hot glue to create a seal so the stopper would fit.  The hot glue worked great and you can’t even tell it’s there.
Here’s the finished product again:

And here’s what it cost me:

New money spent:

  • drill bit: $8
  • lamp kit:  $10

$18 is pretty good for a solid PB or West Elm knock-off.

Here’s what it would cost if all the parts had to be bought new:

  • bit and kit:  $18
  • jug:  $10-$15  (The shelves of HomeGoods, T.J. Maxx, and Marshall’s are littered with glass jug thingies.  Mine was $15, but I’ve seen ones the same size for $10.)
  • drum shade:  $15 from Wal-Mart’s Canopy line
  • lamp harp and prongs:  $4 (you may need these depending on what kind of shade you have.  These are also sold at Lowe’s)

$47-$52 is still about half of what it would cost to buy the Pottery Barn Eva lamp.

I hope you’ll hop over to The Thrifty Abode and check out my other thrifty adventures in decorating.

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Cassity Kmetzsch started Remodelaholic after graduating from Utah State University with a degree in Interior Design. Remodelaholic is the place to share her love for knocking out walls, and building everything back up again to not only add function but beauty to her home. Together with her husband Justin, they have remodeled 6 homes and are working on a seventh. She is a mother of four amazing girls. Making a house a home is her favorite hobby.

We love hearing from fellow Remodelaholics, so let us know what you like about this and leave any questions below in the comments. If you've followed a tutorial or been inspired by something you've seen here, we'd love to see pictures! Submit pictures here or by messaging us over on Facebook.

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  1. Thank you, this is the best tutorial on turning a vase into a lamp that I could find!

    I know that unfortunately here in Switzerland the bit will be more expensive and I am not even sure I can find the kit here, but you sure made me want to try 🙂

  2. I fell I love with this lamp in a magazine, that was $109. We just bought a new house, new furniture etc, and I can’t spend that kind of money. Plus, I need two of them! So I, like you, took to the Google…and found this tutorial. I didn’t write down that you used a 5/16 drill bit. I should’ve because it probably would’ve saved me trouble. I had asked an employee to help me. He gave me a 3/8. I cracked my first vase, even though I used masking and duct tape. It looks like a bullet hole. I’m going to try again but I wanted to post this so that anyone reading would buy the bit that you did!