Oh sweet victory, this might be my favorite project to date. Seriously.

Do you ever start a project with grand hopes, and it turns out even better than you thought it would? Yeah, me neither. I mean, at least almost never. I’m lucky to come close to what I’m seeing in my head.

Try not to hate me for my $20 vintage tripod find. Picture me slow-mo running across the estate sale warehouse, reaching out for it screaming “OOOHHHHMMAAAAAHHGGGGAAAAWWWWDDD” and finally hoisting it above my head like it’s a piece of big game I’m feeding to my starving family.



Oh you know she was there. Across the room.

“I’m gonna make a LAMP out of this!”

{shakes tripod vigorously, legs flailing}

I do believe that if she wasn’t hoarding a boatload of cut glass and china in her hands she would have jumped for joy.

So flash forward to Home Depot, picking up these little joints:

Now this isn’t so much of a tutorial, per say, since all tripods are different and we had to adapt ours to the lamp kit in very specific way…but if you are dying for a tripod lamp don’t be intimidated by the “putting together” of it. It can be done!

Mine had two holes on the top, which I thought we could use to mount some sort of plate for the lamp kit.

Mike helped me out, because he’s got all kinds of spare parts and materials in the basement to rig something like this up. First we measured the distance between the holes. Mike happened to have a piece of scrap pvc sheet that he thought would work for the job, but we could have used wood also…just get creative!

He drilled 2 holes in the plate to match up with the holes on the tripod, and a hole in the middle for the lamp hardware. Two bolts with nuts went up through the holes to hold the plate in place.

Once we got it all wired up and attached it to the plate, it looked like this.

Now for the shade….ahhhhh…the pièce de résistance! I’ve actually had this sweet lampshade for over 6 months. It was on a crazy looking wood bucket storage lamp (yeah, the top of the lamp actually came off to reveal the bucket underneath). I remember it cost me $7 at Goodwill, which I thought was totally worth it for the shade alone.

I mean come on, check out some of the detail.

But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t find a lamp base that worked with it. It was like Goldi-shade, and sadly she was banished to the closet. I’m so glad I never gave up and tossed it out though. She was just waiting for the right fit.


What do you think?

13 Responses

  1. Jennifer Cheek-Payan

    I love this lamp!!! It is sooo cool! Thank so much for the tutorial ~ now to find a neat tri-pod!

  2. Claudia

    we too went to an estate sale….OMG I LOVE LOVE LOVE them! The most fun I’ve had in awhile.

  3. Renee Cook

    Amazing… I just love it..I have the tripod and I am searching for the perfest lamp sade…lol..funny how that works out…

  4. Janet

    I love what you did with the tripod! I could feel your excitement when you described finding it, I’ve been there too. :) It turned out so nice, great job!

  5. Carol

    Amazing! I’m obsessed with tripod lamps, but they’re so expensive. Your project is so inspiring!


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