DIY Pendant Light from A Vase

Alrighty.  There are only two more things to write about in our “new” kitchen and then I’m done talking about it.  Promise!  I’m ready to move on to the next room too!  Today though?  Lighting.  Specifically, the ceiling fan and the new pendant over the sink.

Here’s a shot of the kitchen sink area with the header still up, hiding the simple, little light fixture behind:IMG_7312
Once we took that header down, even though I didn’t really mind the existing light, it wasn’t substantial enough to fill in that space.IMG_7348

So, we bought this pendant light kit* in antique brass and used a thrifted vase to make a new pendant.

It’s hard to see it with the light from the window invading (such a good invasion!), but you can hopefully see how much better it fills the space and adds a little more class than that old fixture.IMG_8944pix
Well, I’ve had this light kit on an Amazon list of mine for a couple of years for no reason other than to not forget it existed because I knew there would come a day when we would want one.  As far as pendant lights go, this Westinghouse pendant is the cheapest you can find that looks good and quality-wise, is great.  We used a brushed nickle one* in our old kitchen with a glass pendant we bought at Lowe’s.  That day came during the One Room Challenge a few weeks ago but I waited until the last minute to buy it because I wanted to see how low the price would go.  I am ALWAYS hunting for those Warehouse deals too so my eyes were peeled and peeled good.  And let me tell you, God loves me, this I know because the week before the ORC ended, I scored our pendant light in “very good” condition for $6.99!  I’m telling you, Amazon Warehouse is where it’s at!

The globe is actually a round vase I found at a thrift store long ago for $1.  Most craft stores sell vases like this too and for under $5.  To turn the vase into a pendant light globe, we had to drill a hole into the bottom.  I bought these drill bits* that are made specifically for glass to drill that hole.  My friend Jesse is a pro at drilling holes into glass so, after I got done trying to wish her down here from Nashville to do the job for me, I filled a big plastic tupperware tub with water (enough to just cover the entire vase once it was set inside), laid an old hand towel in it, set the vase on top of the hand towel (so the vase didn’t slide all over the place), and started drilling.  The initial drill to get the hole started was a little crazy – the drill kept sliding around and off the vase.  Frustration got ahold of me and so I let Anthony take over.  Hehe.   IMG_7874
The little ‘donut hole’ was kind of cool.  :)IMG_7875
To cover up the light bulb base of the pendant (that would’ve been an eyesore through the clear glass), I (re)spray painted the top half of the vase my favorite gold, Rust Oleum Metallic Gold*.IMG_7907

Not to start a tangent but I write resprayed because right after I bought this vase, I spray painted the bottom gold and used it in the girls’ room to house a little peace lily.  It looked great forever but then I set it outside one day and just never brought it back in and between being outside in the elements and being haphazardly stowed away in the moves, the paint got a little roughed up.  I started scraping it off for the pendant project but then I realized that, since I was just going to paint right over it, it would disappear and I was wasting my time.  So I just left the rest.  To keep paint from spraying into the inside of the vase, I taped off the hole.IMG_7906
(And just an FYI, I wasn’t thinking about how the scratched paint would show from inside the globe once on the pendant.  Oops.  It does and you really can’t see it unless you’re almost directly under the pendant but if I could travel back in time and scrape that old paint off, I would.)

I wanted the paint to have the same ombre effect I had sprayed it with last time, only a little farther down the glass so I didn’t tape anything off, which would’ve created a harsh line (and still could’ve look cool…just not the look I was going for).  I just sprayed the top of the vase from directly above, being careful to not move my hand down the side of the vase while spraying.  The curve of the vase blocked any paint from getting past that halfway point.IMG_7908

(There are water droplets inside the vase in the above pic because I washed it right before.  I didn’t dry the inside well enough, apparently.)

Pendant light:  done. 


But, ruh roh, while we were hanging the pendant, a tiny screw that holds the wire in place at the base of the globe fell out and would not go back in due to the fact that it was stripped.  I doubt Amazon knew the light had this issue (it also has a teeny-tiny dent in the canopy which is probably why it was in the Marketplace) but sadly, it did.  I emailed Westinghouse (the makers of this pendant) and asked if I could buy another small screw.  I figured it would set me back no more than a buck, right?  Well after a few seemingly critical questions from them, they just up and sent us a whole new pendant light!  They said they didn’t sell the parts separately.  Not wanting to uninstall the old to install the new, I just took the screw from the new and put it in the old.  And later I’ll hunt down that screw online or something for the extra pendant light we now have.  It’s really a win win.  :D  I’m grateful for the customer service from Westinghouse!  They’ve gained a couple of loyal customers in us!

On to the ceiling fan and its new lamp shade. 

Here’s what the fan looked like pre-shade:


And the much better, post-shade:IMG_8096
One of my favorite ways to update a ceiling fan is to add a lamp shade over the light source (see here, here, and here).  It’s pretty easy, especially if the ceiling fan has one light bulb like the one in our kitchen does.  You can see just how simple it is here.  So, one of the very first things I did when we moved in was swap out the glass shade with a fabric shade I had bought at Dirt Cheap months ago for uno dollar.  It just changes the whole space, making it look halfway decent even when it was half finished. 

I feel like a ceiling fan in the kitchen is kind of awkward to begin with so I’m happy that I could make this little switcheroo to help it fit in a little more.  :)

I got the shade for a dollar because it had a few dents and a crack on one side.  That didn’t bother me though because I figured I’d eventually strip and recover it, which I planned on doing within the kitchen makeover.  But then I couldn’t decide on a fabric, la da da, and so I just ended up semi-fixing the dent and adding some trim.

To “fix” the dents/crack, I held my blow dryer over the incriminating spots until the plastic softened enough to be pushed back into place. 
Heating it didn’t completely correct the blemishes but it certainly helped and made them far less noticeable, especially to someone who doesn’t know they exist.  IMG_7878
My glass-drilling friend, Jesse, gave me the mustard-colored, tassel trim a couple of years ago and I’ve just been hanging onto it, waiting for the day to teach myself how to adorn pillow covers with it.  :)IMG_7880
Well, I snipped a few feet off, ran a line of Elmer’s along the bottom edge of my shade, stuck the trim to the glue, and held it there with a few laundry pins while the glue dried.

I used Elmer’s instead of a craft glue because I wasn’t certain if the trim would give the shade an unwanted 70’s vibe or not and, in case it did, at least I could just take off the trim and wash off that washable glue, getting me back to the blank slate shade I started with. 

Ceiling fan update:  done.IMG_8954pix
I have plans to squeeze in a post about the spice rack over the range before next Wednesday so check back for that!  NEXT WEDNESDAY I’m throwing away my contacts and glasses forEVER in favor of organic sight via eye surgery…PRK.  I’m 90% excited and 10% nervous because I’ve been told the recovery is a little rough.  Eep.  I don’t know when I’ll get back to gazing at my computer writing a blog post…hopefully not too long, but in case it’s a few weeks, you know where I am…probably horizontal somewhere in my casa.  ;)  A prayer or two tossed up for my eyeballs will be relished!

Thanks friend!

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add a shade to a fan


  1. New to your blog and I love your creatiivity! I had RK on one eye a few years ago, I opted for mono vision. I realize only one eye was done but I other than a feeling of sand in my eye and a little discomfort, that was it. I will keep you in my prayers and you will be so happy with the outcome! I would do it again in a heartbeat...

    1. Hey!! Thanks! I just realized I haven't been getting comment notifications so I'm sorry I'm late but I wish I would've read this before the PRK! It might've calmed my nerves a tad. Haha! But, it wasn't bad at all and I'm so grateful! I appreciate you sharing!!