Next up in our holiday guest series is the very talented LZ, who took a basic “Hollywood style” light strip from her bathroom and turned it into a chic rustic chandelier pendant light!
Think how versatile this could be — just swap the mason jars for another style of glass shade!
Here’s LZ with the tutorial:
How to Upcycle a Vanity Light Strip into a Pendant Light or Chandelier
by LZ from The Summery Umbrella
Hello Remodelaholics! I’m LZ Cathcart and I’m the creative mind behind The Summery Umbrella. I enjoy sharing my adventures in DIY projects with my super talented husband, as well as my love for creating wall décor from reclaimed wood in my shop. You’ll find that I primarily focus my attention on what I call the 3 R’s. Rustic, Repurpose and Repaint. I like to keep it simple, but pretty and unique at the same time! To illustrate my design style and also some of my all-time favorite DIY projects check out these beauties: Upcycled Lamp Shade Pendant Light, Rustic & Industrial Bucket Light, and Reclaimed Wood Pumpkins.
Recently Mike (aka. super, talented husband) and I bought a new home in the middle of nowhere, and we are in a DIY heaven! Overall the house was in good condition, but it lacked A.) a lot of our own style and B.) lighting. Our mason jar pendant light project that I am sharing with you today was definitely needed in a terrible way, but wasn’t exactly high on our priority list at the time we came up with the idea. Even though we try to tackle only one DIY project at a time, it doesn’t always work that way in our house! We had just finished remodeling our spare bathroom, and had the leftover bathroom light vanity strip that I did not want to throw away. So, Mike and I began tossing around ideas for an original dining room light fixture to hang over our table. By combining my love for using reclaimed wood, repurposing old items, and my husband’s handy-man skills, this mason jar pendant light was born. Read on to see how you can have this beautiful light in your home as well. Enjoy!
Important note from LZ, June 2015:Mason jars are designed for boiling water (aka. canning foods) so the heat they are supposed to withstand is at the boiling point. With that being said, the heat from the bulbs will be significantly smaller than anything compared to boiling water. So, I can ensure you that the risk of these jars exploding is incredibly small. If you do have any issues whatsoever with your jars then the company who created them has a huge problem.
Materials and Tools We Used:
40” L x 8.5” W x 1” thick piece of reclaimed barn wood
1.) First, I painted the light fixture (remember to tape off the light sockets!). This item was repurposed from our guest bathroom DIY make-over so all it needed was a little paint. I used my all- time favorite color of spray paint: Rust-oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze.
2.) Next, drill a hole into the barn wood with a 2 1/8 inch drill bit for the electrical wires.
3.) Pull apart the light fixture so it can be attached to the barn wood. Drill four holes; one on each end and two in the middle to secure just the inside piece of your light strip to the piece of barn wood.
4.) Attach the exterior part of your light fixture (this particular one just clipped back into place).
5.) Drill holes into the Mason jar lids using 1 3/8 inch drill bit for the light socket opening. Use a 1/8 inch drill bit to pre-drill two holes into each lid so they
also can be securely fastened to the fixture.
6.) Place the Mason jar bands on first, then the lids and finally screw them in. You can also screw in the light bulbs and Mason jars at this point if you want to get a preview of
your new light.
7.) Using a ¾ inch drill bit, drill four holes (two on each end) of the wood to allow access for the rope that will hang your light fixture.
8.) Install a ceiling hook. As you can see we have slanted ceilings in our home which makes hanging this light a little more complicated. Also, our electrical outlet in the ceiling is too far over in this corner to be centered with our table (which drives me a little insane). So, we decided to install ours approximately 8 inches from the electrical outlet so it would be centered with our table, and also allowing me to sleep soundly at night!
9.) Measure from the ceiling down to approximately how high above your table you would like your light fixture to hang. The length of the rope and height of the light fixture will depend on where you are hanging it and the height of your ceiling.
*Note: If you don’t have your Mason jars attached to your light at this point make sure to account for their length when measuring for your rope.
10.) Cut your rope. You’ll be cutting four different strands. Two will be used for the sides of your fixture, and will go approximately three-fourths of the way up. The third will be to combine the first two, and then hang your entire fixture to the ceiling hook. The fourth is for decoration (I’ll get to this one in just one second!)
Use one strand on each side of the board and knot it underneath. Fold the third in half and use it to bring the two sides together; tie a knot at the top. Run the electrical wire from your fixture up the back of one side of the rope. Preferably use a strand that will not be facing out.
11.) Shorten the electrical cord if necessary, and then add a plastic electrical cap if you have an existing hole in your ceiling (like we did).
12.) Twist a smaller piece of rope around the main rope that is hanging the fixture all the way up to the ceiling
to hide the electrical wire.
13.) If you’re anything like me I’m sure that the little bit of black electrical cord on the ceiling is an eye sore. All you need to do is add some white paint, and you’ll be good to go!VOILA! You are finished!
Time and Cost Involved:
We absolutely LOVE how our Mason jar pendant light turned out, and it is definitely at the top of our list of favorite DIY projects in our new home. The cost of this project will ultimately depend on the materials you already have on hand.
The wood piece we used is from an old barn that my husband tore down, and it is made of Hemlock Pine.
Since we repurposed our former bathroom vanity light there was no cost here either, but you can find one similar to this on Amazon for $28.
We already had Mason jars, but you can find them for around $10 for six, and this particular spray paint is typically $6 a can.
The cost of rope varies depending on the material used, diameter, and length; prices range from $10-$40.
It’s hard to say how long this project took because we did it over a 2 day period, stopping to take breaks and then entertain our now 3 year old daughter. If you had all of the materials on hand and focused on this project alone, it would probably take 2-4 hours.
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