In With the Old: Turning Columns into Floor Lamps
With white paint and punchy shades, Eddie Ross breathes new life into salvaged architectural relics.
What a Steal!
Eddie loves to transform castoffs into masterpieces. He spotted these 5-foot tall fluted columns, reminiscent of grand, old homes with wide, open porches. He loved the beaded detailing around the tops, but multiple lives had resulted in layers of cracked and peeling paint, so they were in dire need of an update. With fresh coats of paint and easy upgrades, they became beautiful floor lamps. Look for columns such as these at flea markets or salvage yards for around $100 and up.
- Eddie's flea market shopping tips.
- 2 hollow columns
- 2 lampshades
- handheld electric sander or sponge sanding block
- primer (shellac-based stain blocker)
- white paint
- cordless drill or screwdriver
- 2 electrical lamp kits
- 2 fence post caps
- 8 leg mounting kits
- 8 - 2.5” round bun furniture feet
- 16 -1” finishing nails
Step 1: Add Height
Step 2: Prep and Paint
Step 3: Wire for Electricity
Tip: Depending on the height of your column, you may need a longer length of cord than the one provided in the kit. To see how much cord you may need, measure the height of the column. Add the distance between the lamp and plug. Then give yourself two extra feet. For a pair of lamps, double the overall length. If you do need to purchase more cord, be sure to pick up two quick-connecting flat-cord plugs as well.
Step 4: Cap It Off
Step 5: Porch Perfect Shade
Since Eddie’s lamps are for the porch, he had a friend create custom, porch-appropriate shades using outdoor fabric, water-resistant adhesive, and vellum plastic frames. If your lamps are well protected from the elements, store bought shades will work just as well.
Tip: Eddie had his friend Susan Scheinder of Shandells railroad the fabric (apply it horizontally) to echo the column’s fluting.
Rug: St. John striped Indoor/Outdoor rug by Dash and Albert Woven furniture: Outdoor King Collection, all-weather wicker through Hayneedle
Column paint: Cincinnatian Hotel Hannaford (3007-10C) by Valspar through Lowes
Lampshade fabric: Alan Campbell’s Zig Zag in Jungle Green (AC302-32SUN) by Quadrille
Custom shades: fabricated by Shandell’s
Napkin pillow fabric (Napkins made into pillows): Las Palmas Napkins in Aqua/Green through World Market
Tray tables: for a similar look try, Tray top accent table from Target
Tray table paint: Jalapeno jelly (6005-6A) by Valspar through Lowes
Lantern: 14-inch Hex Iron Lantern (painted white) from Jamali Garden
Candles: Classic pillar from Creative Candles