Thursday, May 8, 2014

Antique Piano Lamp {Makeover Edition}

I love old things. I love their history, their character, their uniqueness. However, I don't always love their appearances. I often buy a piece because it has "good bones" and transform it into something beautiful. Today I present to you one of my favorite transformations - and all it took was a little paint and sealant.

Today's Offering:

Antique Lamp Makeover

I found this lovely antique piano lamp on ebay for under $20. Needless to say, I bought it.

Antique lamp makeover

The structure, the lines of the lamp were gorgeous! From the detailed foot base, to the gracefully curved crossing goosenecks, to the fine herringbone ribbed tulip glass shades, it was beautiful.

I was in love.

It was just as pretty in person. But something wasn't quite right. Actually, make that two somethings.

First of all, the brass was very brassy. It was a shiny gold-tone with built up dust in-between the detailing. Cleaning it only made it worse. It became an even brighter brassy color.

Also, the fine detailing on the lamp shades was difficult to see unless you got up close to the lamp, and how many people go around examining other people's lamps? Unless you're an appraiser, you probably would miss this subtle feature.

So as always, I took matters into my own hands with my paintbrush. I used this wonderful paint to tone down the brass and give the metal more of a champagne tint.
DecoArt Elegant Finish Metallic Paint in Champagne Gold

I love this paint. It is so easy to work with, and I've used it very successfully when painting a variety of surfaces including metal, wood, and glass. I applied it pretty liberally to the metal parts of the lamp, allowed it to set, and sealed it with a sealant.

The result was much more subdued, which was exactly as I had hoped. However, the shades still looked less than spectacular. They had a pretty shape, but in my mind's eye, I could tell that an opalescent sheen would really make the detailing pop. Since I had my DecoArt metallic paint already out, I thought I'd just try it.

I applied a thin layer of the paint to the outside of the shades, and while they were still wet, I carefully wiped any excess out of the grooves with a lint free rag. The result was stunning!

The lamp now sits proudly in my family room near the fireplace. It fills the entire room with a warm glow when lit.

The herringbone petals are finally noticeable from a distance.

And the shades sparkle and shine when the sunlight dances upon them!

The entire transformation was done with one simple paint job with DecoArt Elegant Finish Metallic Paint in Champagne Gold. It's available here.


  1. That is a beautiful lamp, and it is even more gorgeous after you treated it!

  2. The art of "the subltle change" makes a big difference. Lovely job.

  3. Wow that is an amazing transformation. So elegant!

  4. Wow... I love your end result! I also want to be able to do these things and just don't always know where to start. :)

  5. Very, very pretty! I need to learn to use different paints! I am too scared though!

  6. Excellent makeover! ...this is exactly the result I would like to see!

  7. You did an awesome job. I love it!

  8. Hi there, I love what you did with the lamp. I'm just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris

  9. Now that's a classy looking lamp! I think you did a very nice job and you have a new follower! :) Have a lovely day!