Upcycling an Antique Floor Lamp with Small Solar Lights

Upcycling an Antique Floor Lamp with Small Solar Lights

While perusing an estate sale on half-price day, I came across this antique floor lamp that was positively gorgeous. The wiring was shot but it was otherwise in well-loved but decent shape. I didn’t care about the electrical issues, though – as I knew right away it would become backyard decor! All I needed to do was clean it up and outfit it with small solar lights / solar lanterns.

Antique Floor Lamp at thrift store for upcycling idea that uses solar lanterns for junk garden decor by Sadie Seasongoods

I went to the hardware store and purchased three solar path lights or solar driveway lights. And this is what I planned on doing with them:

Upcycling ideas for antique floor lamp and small solar lights to make some backyard decor by Sadie Seasongoods

But, before I can outfit the antique floor lamp with solar lights, there was some clean up and de-wiring that needed to happen first. This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience.

Upcycling an Antique Lamp in to Backyard Decor

First, I needed to remove the old wiring, which was no easy feat given the curvy lamp frame.

Taking apart an antique floor lamp and removing the wiring for upcycling idea by Sadie Seasongoods

But, with some tools and determination, I was able to pull all the wiring and sockets out without damaging the lamp.

As for those pretty socket cups, well…this is what several decades of NOT dusting looks like.

Removing the dust from an antique floor lamp using compressed air or canned air by Sadie Seasongoods

It was like a dust-sweater in there!

Canned air to the rescue- it blew the dusty chunks out in no time. When everything was said and done, everything but the main lamp base had been taken apart and/or removed.

Parts from an antique floor lamp that will become backyard decor with small solar lights by Sadie Seasongoods

I wiped everything down- and the lamp was suddenly far more green than grey! In the end, though, the only original electrical parts I kept were the metal socket shells.

Why? Because those small solar lights were a perfect fit inside them.

Reassembling the sockets from a vintage floor lamp that will be outfitted with solar lanterns by Sadie Seasongoods

Speaking of those small solar lights…

Color-Matching Small Solar Lights / Solar Driveway Lights

Because I wasn’t going to paint the lamp, I wanted my brown-toned solar lights to blend in. I also didn’t need the stakes that they were screwed into.

Solar driveway lights or solar lanterns to use with an antique floor lamp by Sadie Seasongoods

So, I found a pretty close match and spray painted them- after carefully covering the solar cells with painter’s tape!

Spray painting the small solar lights or solar driveway lights to color match a vintage floor lamp by Sadie Seasongoods

After the paint dried, I re-assembled the solar driveway lights / solar path lights so that I could add them to my antique floor lamp!

Color matching some solar path lights to add them to an antique floor lamp for backyard decor by Sadie Seasongoods

Backyard Decor with an Antique Floor Lamp and Solar Lanterns

And that was it! I just needed to allow the solar lights to charge in the daylight so that I could see it work at night.

Antique Floor lamp or vintage floor lamp with small solar lights to use as junk garden decor by Sadie Seasongoods

And my spray painted solar lights look like they were ALWAYS meant to go with this antique floor lamp, don’t they?

Upcycling some solar driveway lights or small solar lights with a vintage floor lamp for backyard decor by Sadie Seasongoods

Let me tell you, it was EXCRUCIATING to wait for night to arrive! All I wanted to do was see my antique floor lamp solar light in action.

Thankfully, though, it was worth the wait.

Vintage floor lamp that has been upcycled into backyard decor with small solar lights or solar lanterns by Sadie Seasongoods

Like A Midsummer’s Night Dream come to life in my backyard. Or a street light in a fairy world. It was…sublime

How to upcycle an antique floor lamp using small solar lights or solar driveway lights for backyard decor by Sadie Seasongoods

And since the solar lights aren’t attached permanently to the lamp, I could still re-wire it if the desire strikes. But I don’t know…I’m pretty taken by these solar lights. Once the weather cools down and the mosquitoes die off…there will be wine drinking and moon-gazing to do under the glow…

If you enjoyed this upcycling idea for backyard decor, then you might LOVE my mosaic stepping stone with secret key hider project, as well!

Upcycling a cake pan to make a mosaic stepping stone with secret key hider by Sadie Seasongoods

Craft on!

S

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Comments

  1. Love this … I think I have an old pole lamp I have been saving that I can give new life to with solar power.

  2. wow, wow and WOW! Thanks so much for linking to me Sarah! I love, I mean WANT this lamp! It’s gorgeous. I’ve never seen one quite like it before.

    super job blending the colors of the new with the old. PINNING!

    gail

    • It’s a pretty spectacular piece, isn’t it? I couldn’t resist…and now I’m so glad I brought it home! And thank you so much for sharing on FB…you know that means the world to me!! 😀

  3. Love it! What a great idea! I have other solar lights I have made, but never a floor lamp! Pinning!

  4. What a great idea and it looks so nice too! Good Job!

  5. Love this so much! What a great find. And knowing you can rewire in the future when you are ready makes it even better 🙂

  6. What a clever idea! I see old floor lamps at yard sales all the time, can’t wait to find another one. Thanks for sharing this idea at Vintage Inspiration Party.

  7. Oh my gosh, this is so genius! I would love to have a few of these on my deck near the pool. I am going to stalk the ReStore until I find something comparable. Thanks so much for sharing at Inspiration Thursday!

  8. This is such an amazing upcycling project!

  9. Fantastic idea! I’m curious if it is heavy enough to stand up to some wind though, and/or how to weight it down?

    • Luckily I plan on keeping this on our screened-in back porch. But, I’m sure you could add some quikcrete to the underside of the base…I just don’t want to do that since we do plan on re-wiring it at some point. 🙂

  10. What a fantastic idea! It looks amazing! I’m sure you will enjoy it 🙂 Fiona x

  11. You’re a genius really – the things you come up with !!!
    This is just fabulous !

  12. I hopped over from A Tray of Bliss’s Five Star Frugal #17. This solar lamp is brilliant! The base you used reminds me of a (long gone) floor lamp my parents owned when I was a child. Now I must start checking the thrift stores for my own base.

  13. What a great idea…makes me look at light fixtures in a whole new way…thanks for sharing!

  14. Totally gorgeous!

    You have done a fantastic job with this lamp and the solar lights are a brilliant idea!

    I came by from A Tray of Bliss.

    xTania

  15. I love the way this turned out! What a delightful lamp and of course I love the color. Green is my favorite. Have a great weekend. Dianne

  16. Absolutely gorgeous!

  17. So cute Sarah! I would love to find something similar for out under my pergola. Thanks for sharing with SYC.
    hugs,
    Jann

  18. karionforward says

    That is so creative. I love the vintage street like look! And it is eco-friendly. Love this repurposed idea. Sharinfg!

  19. Hi Sarah, this was indeed sublime.. and a half! 🙂

    Love at first light, truly. Now you need to find a few more of these on sale and have yourself a fully illuminated backyard, one worthy of hosting a royal family event or two 😀

    I admire your dedication and persistence in the (re)making of the floor lamp. It came out excellent due to sterling work and bright vision (pun intended) 🙂

    Just think of all the possibilities if you actually had several of those, although not necessarily of the exact same type.

    I only fear those might not hold the candle (oops, I did it again) in the rain. But either way, great find and awesome crafting skills!

    Best regards,
    Christabel Benoit

  20. Oh I love the lamp! Great find and such a clever idea! Thank you so much for linking up to Merry Monday this week! I am sharing your post tomorrow on my FB page. We hope to see you next week for another great party! Have a great week!
    Best,
    Kim

  21. This is absolutely beautiful and brilliant too, I might add. I so love this! Thank you for sharing at Inspire Me Wednesday. Featuring you in this week’s issue and on Instagram tomorrow.

    • Thank you so much!!!

    • Catherine says

      Just saw this!!! I have an antique floor lamp that will NOT rewire, lol! It has paper cup holders. (Sorry-newbie, don’t know the correct term). My question is, since I do not have a back porch, this will be exposed to downpours. (When I’m not home), I will move or put bag over in rain. But what else can be done to protect it? Super idea!!

  22. What a wonderful transformation – I love it. Now I will have to find a floor lamp to transform for our outdoor area. Thank you so much for sharing at Share It One More Time. Cathy

  23. Wow you did a great job with the transformation of this lamp.
    Thanks for sharing it at Cooking and Crafting with J & J.
    Enjoy the week.
    Julie xo

  24. I LOVE lamps of all kinds! This turned out great!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  25. Love this! Sharing on my facebook page!

  26. You are so creative!!! Such a great idea!!! Thanks again for linking up to Welcome Home Wednesday!

  27. Totally AWESOME!!! What a terrific transformation and thanks so much for sharing and inspiring. Now I’ll be on the lookout for a floor lamp to convert. Best ~ Mickie

  28. Stephanie @ Casa Watkins says

    Great project!! I adore a good upcycle and this is a great one! Pinning and Sharing. Thanks for sharing at the Your Home Decor and More Party!!

  29. Thanks for stopping by to share and linking on http://ohmyheartsiegirl.com/heartsie-girls-wordless-wednesday-43/

  30. I want one for my deck. So now I’m looking for an old floor lamp to transform. Well at least I have a few months until Spring. Thank you for sharing your genius idea at Vintage Charm.

  31. Great save on that lamp and I have to say I NEVER thought to use canned air like that! I’ve only used it on keyboards. When I get home, guess what is getting sprayed out…only every lamp and sconce in my house!!

    Thanks for linking up with us on Throwback Thursday – we appreciate it, and are always looking forward to next week’s posts, too!! 🙂 Be sure to follow our pinterest board, too! 🙂

    Mollie

  32. This is interesting! Pls do Link UP at the Practical Mom Link Up! I’d love to see you there 🙂

  33. Such a wonderful idea! I always look for ways to reuse the things that don’t work anymore and this always turn to something good. I love creative solutions and this is really a nice one. Using the solar lamps for fixing this floor lamp is great! Thumbs up and thanks for sharing! 🙂

  34. You are so darn crafty and creative! This is a great project! Thanks for sharing over at Celebrate Your Story! I have pinned this one for future reference!

  35. You have opened up a world of possibilities for outdoor lighting, thank you!

  36. Robin~AllThingsHeartandHome says

    Thank you for sharing your magical light…xo

  37. How do you secure the base of the solar light to the lamp Since the light would eventually need replacing?

    Thank you.

  38. natashalh says

    Very, very cool! We’ll be without reliable electricity for a while this summer. Last year we used some little solar string lights, but I totally never thought to use a “real” lamp to hold solar lights! And canned air for the win! I love that stuff for blasting out dust.

    • Sadie Seasongoods says

      Thank you so very much! It sounds like this will REALLY come in handy for you. 🙂

  39. Kathy A. says

    You did it again; you took something we couldn’t see much promise in and turned it into pretty, functional piece.Awesome!

  40. Now this is one of few posts of yours that I missed, Sarah. It caught my eye this morning at the Friday Favorites party and I had to pop over to take a closer look. Love it – pinned it!

  41. That is adorable! Reminds me of a miniature lantern, also love the fact that it’s with solar lights!

  42. Hi Sadie, I have to say this has got to be the best upscale, repurposed, recycled, project I’ve ever seen. Thank you for this great idea.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Floor Lamp Transformation to Charming Solar Lights […]

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