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October 12, 2015
I have wanted to make a wine bottle lamp for quite some time now. The reason I hadn't made one until now, though, is because I had no idea how to do it! Well, let me tell you, it's super easy with the help of the I Like That Lamp Bottle Lamp & Shade Kit. With this kit, all I needed was the bottle, some fabric, and of course some fun extras to make it custom!
For my lamp project, I decided to use what I call "the double bottle." Some wines are offered in larger bottles, this one being a 1.5 Liter bottle. The first thing I did to prep the bottle was let it soak in warm, soapy water to help clean the bottle and to make it easier to remove the labels. After about an hour or so, I removed the bottle from the soapy water and began to peel off as much of the label as I could get on my own. It's nearly impossible to get all of the residual adhesives off of the bottle, so I used some Goo Gone and a scrubbing pad to get the rest off. Once the adhesive was all gone and the bottle was spotless, I let it sit for a while to make sure the inside of the bottle could dry out.
After the bottle was clean came the fun part - playing with paint! I knew I wanted the bottle to have some color to it and while I love painting things, I didn't feel like painting the outside of the bottle was going to get me the look I was going for, so I decided to paint the inside of the bottle. To do this, I just squeezed an entire small bottle of craft paint into the bottle and swirled it around.
After lots of swirling, I had covered the entire inside of the bottle and had to get rid of the excess paint on the inside to help it dry faster. To get rid of the excess, I turned the bottle upside down and let it sit in a glass overnight to dry. To make sure the glass that was holding the bolding didn't end up covered in paint, I used a small paper cup inside the glass to catch the paint. In hindsight, I know now that I probably should've used the empty paint bottle to catch the excess paint so I didn't waste a ton of it. Oh well, lesson learned. :)
Another lesson I learned during the "paint drying" phase is that it will not dry overnight. In fact, it took nearly a week for my bottle to get dry enough for me to feel good about using it. I tried to use it after only 2 days and ended up in a big blue mess. The next time I try this I may try to figure out a way to let the bottle dry upside down without it being in a glass since the glass doesn't allow for any airflow to help the bottle dry. Like I said, lesson learned. :)
Once the bottle was finally dry, I was ready to start actually making the lamp. The kit includes all the materials I needed to actually construct a lamp out of the wine bottle. One thing I did slightly different than the instructions stated was to drill a hole in the bottle because I wanted the cord to go through the bottle instead of outside of it. To do this, I used an electric drill with a drill bit made for glass. If you don't have these supplies or don't want to take the time to drill a hole, the light socket has a cord exit hole that allows the cord to run behind the bottle instead of through it.
After the hole was drilled, I picked the right size adapter that would allow the lamp pieces to stay securely positioned on the bottle and followed the included directions to put the rest of the pieces together. In total, the part of the project of actually wiring lamp took maybe 5 minutes - probably less. It's so easy!
Now that the lamp itself was complete, it was time to move to the lampshade. As with the lamp pieces, everything I needed for the shade was in the kit. All I needed to do was to select what fabric I wanted to use to make it custom.
To prepare the fabric, I ironed it before I did anything else. This is super important to make sure all of the creases are out so they don't end up appearing on the lampshade. Then, I turned the fabric "upside down" so the pattern was on the floor. This allowed me to affix the styrene to it with the pattern being on the side that will be seen. The styrene that is included in the kit already has adhesive on one side, which means all I had to do was peel off the paper covering the adhesive and press it on the fabric! I then cut around the styrene according to the dimensions provided in the directions that came with the kit.
Because I was making this lamp as a gift for my friend to put in her new baby's room, I wanted to add a little something extra. I decided to add a monogram, but not so you would see it all the time. I wanted it to be a surprise, so when the light was turned on, you'd see his monogram. I cut the letters out of vinyl and adhered them to the inside of the lamp shade. I used a self-stick vinyl, so the trickiest part of this was just to remember to reverse the image since the letters would essentially be put on backward. One I had the monogram in place, it was time to move to the last part of the project.
With the fabric cut and adhered to the styrene, I was in the home stretch! I held the styrene together to form a circle while I placed the top ring in place and secured it to the styrene with the binder clips that are included in the kit. Then, I removed the binder clips one at a time and placed the glue on the fabric, then wrapped it around the top ring. Once I had made it all the way around the ring, I did the same for the bottom ring. At this point, I could hardly contain my excitement because it was done! :D
My very last touch that I couldn't resist was to add the baby's name on the outside of the bottle in coordinating colors. To do this, again, I used vinyl which will stay on without a problem.
And here it is, my DIY Wine Bottle Lamp! This really was a very easy project. My little "extras" are what really took the longest. If I had skipped the vinyl and the paint and the drilling, this project would've taken me probably between 20-30 minutes. It really is that easy!
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