Lamp Makeover (Another Dumpster Find!)

Lamp Makeover by

Last summer while I was at the beach, I found a lamp in a dumpster.  I liked its shape and size and knew that will a little effort I could give it a new life.  The makeover supplies were purchased early last fall and the lamp has patiently been waiting for it’s makeover.   A recent snowstorm gave me two precious days of freedom from work, enough time for the makeover.

Dumpster Lamp Before and After


The first thing I did was sand the brass parts of the lamp to remove the rust.  I sanded until the surface was smooth.  I then taped the painted glass middle of the lamp and painted the top and bottom pieces gold.

Lamp with middle tapedLamp with Gold Paint

I then put plastic bags over the top and bottom and sprayed the middle part of the lamp silver.  The harp on the lamp probably could have been spray painted and reused, but rather than do that, I purchased a new one.

New Harp


The lamp now has a new home in our family room beside Mr. SP’s chair.  This chair is about at the end of its life and he is hoping to get a new one for his birthday in May.  The framed sheet music to the left of Mr. SP’s chair is vintage and belonged to family.  I never get tired of these fun graphics.

Family Room Corner


I really am happy with the way this lamp turned out.  I got lucky and found the shade on sale at Lowe’s for about $10.  The framed maps are all historical.  The one to the left is of Lynchburg and the smaller ones are Civil War sites.

Lamp in Family Room


It’s amazing what a few coats of paint and a shade can do for a lamp.  I’m always on the lookout for lamps while thrifting and rarely see any that I like.  I’m glad that I found this one to save!

Dumpster Lamp Makeover


What projects have you been working on lately?  I’m super happy to mark this lamp makeover off of my list.

Sharing With:
Between Naps on the Porch, A Stroll Thru Life, The Everyday Home, Yesterday on Tuesday, Homework, Serenity Now, Just a Girl and Her Blog, Thrifty Decor Chick, Knick of Time


  1. What a great makeover! I love the way the silver and gold work together. I think lamps are the most expensive things to buy, I think in almost 24 years of marriage I’ve maybe only purchased 2 or 3 brand new off the shelf. I prefer to find them and make them over, too! Great post!

    • Making them over is way more fun, Michelle! I also haven’t purchased many lamps in my lifetime. Most of mine are inherited.

  2. Nice find! Nice makeover! You were so lucky the shade was in good shape and it coordinates so well with the new finish.

  3. Great lamp makeover – you’d never know it was a thrift store find! It caught my eye over at the Metamorphosis Monday Party!

  4. Love your dumpster diving find, Paula! 😉 What a keeper she is now with the gorgeous makeover you gave her. Well worth the wait! And the paisley shade is like the cherry on top!

  5. I love the two tone of the metallics! And the shade is beautiful!

  6. Creative Mind says:

    So Lovely!! wonderful idea 🙂 and beautiful makeover!!

  7. Beautiful Paula…a fantastic makeover!!…and love the shade!

  8. Love your new lamp and the redo is perfect. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  9. It looks so much better. I really love it! You did such a nice job on it. You can’t tell it’s a rescue. I’m currently making a shelf for my daughter’s room. I might have it done tomorrow. We shall see.

  10. Paula…I pinned a few days ago and again today and commenting now (although I thought I did that). Additionally i think i posted on fb and tweeted. 🙂

  11. BEAUTIFUL job! Love the softness ‘n tone of the gold and silver you used. Could you possible share the brand of the spray paint you used and the name of the colours for both, as wanting to transform some curtain rods. With appreciation if you can.

  12. OMG! You are a lucky lady finding that gorgeous lamp.
    Great transformation. Job well done.

    /CC girl

  13. Very nice, Paula!! I love your choices in color and shade! That paisley is lovely for $10! Your maps on the wall are so interesting what a nice wall hanging they make! Do I detect a bone of Sherman’s in a few of your pics? 🙂

  14. OH now that is a great find! I love what you did with it! …and the lamp shade is perfect!

  15. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful project on The Inspiration Board at homework. I featured you today! Have a wonderful weekend.
    carolyn ~ homework

  16. I love how you transformed this lamp, Paula! The entire room is so warm and inviting too!

  17. I love those dumpster finds. This looks so fresh with silver and gold, great work.

  18. Wow, what an amazing transformation! I really love the colors you used and the pattern on the shade.

    I’m always nervous painting glass- did you have to do any special prep?

  19. Paula, this makeover is stunning!! I’m not so good at seeing the potential when it comes to lamps, a problem you obviously don’t have! Thanks for sharing! XO

  20. Amazing transformation, Paula! So stunning! Thank you so much for sharing!

    ~Abby =)

  21. what paint did you use for the gold? Thanks!


  1. […] Repurposing project comes from dumpster diver extraordinaire Paula of Virginia Sweet Pea.  Paula is no stranger to turning trash into treasure.  Case in point this Old Lamp she has […]

  2. […] her blog Sweet Pea, Paula shares the story of a salvaged lamp.  She found this lamp in a dumpster…during a […]

  3. […] apart, sanded the base, and cleaned the white milk glass pieces.  I used gold paint leftover from this lamp makeover and flat white spray paint purchased at Lowe’s to refresh the lamp’s small […]

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