Wooden floor lamp – Ikea lamp facelift
A long long time ago, I bought a simple lamp from Ikea, that consisted of a metal base and rod and a paper lampshade, so in this post I will show you how I transformed it into a wooden floor lamp. During this time (about 5 years), our lamp from Ikea was extremely useful. Although it was used almost continuous, it still works very well. The paper of the lamp shade was broken here and there, but the main reason we started to rebuild the lamp was the fact that we were kind of bored of it.
The base of the new wooden floor lamp
First of all, I changed the base, using an oak panel of 28 cm by 28 cm. The stainless steel lamp base was 25 cm by 25 cm, but that new base had to be slightly larger because I made the stand out of oak wood. I glued a border of 2.5 cm on the bottom sides of the panel, so they have enough space underneath and there wouldn’t be any risk to damage the cable.
1. I took a scrap oak wood panel.
2. I took four oak wood strips for the square frame. I cut the ends at 45 degree and I tested the corner joint.
3. I glued the square frame using a lot of small F clamps.
This is the oak wood base after the glue dried. There were a lot of differences that needed to be sanded.
The splice (at the corner) was ok.
4. We first sanded the edges by using 60 grit sandpaper in order to save some time.
5. We then sanded the edges by using 120 grit sandpaper.
6. We sanded the face of the base with 120 grit sandpaper.
7. We sanded the oak wood strip by using 120 grit sandpaper, on the back of the base.
8. Last thing we done was to beveled the sharp edges and to drill two holes: one in the middle of the floor lamp base and one on the one side of the base, for the electric cable.
This is the way the base of the wooden floor lamp looks like after all these steps:
The leg of the wooden floor lamp
For the leg of the floor lamp I used some scrap wood:
1. I took a few planks of different thicknesses and widths, leftovers from other projects, and I planed them on all sides. Then I cut them to obtain lots of cubes to form the leg of our lamp. The boards have different thicknesses, between 5 cm and 2 cm. Thus, at the end, I could choose the cubes so that the overall height of the leg to be 104 cm (the size of the metal rod I wanted to cover in wood completely).
2. As usual, the longest part of the work was sanding the wood parts. Each cube has been sanded with sandpaper on all the sides that had been cut, to remove marks left by the circular saw’s blade.
3. We first started with 60 grit sandpaper and we ended by using 120 grit sandpaper.
4. I marked, by intersecting diagonals, the middle of each cube.
5. Then I drilled a hole of 15 mm for the stainless steel rod.
6. We sanded the edges of the drilled holes.
After I finished sanding all the oak pieces used to form our new lamp, I finished them with acrylic primer and I have varnished them with water-based varnish.
Assembling all the pieces of the new lamp
In the next step, I had to be an electrician for a little while: I took apart all the lamp’s pieces, until I was able to remove the wire from the bulb socket, so I could mount all the new wood pieces on the metal rod. Just because it’s dangerous to play with electricity, we took care to unplug the lamp, before anything else.
I struggled to pass the cable through the two holes of the new wooden base and then I cried again. That’s because I forgot to put on the cable nut and the washer that hold together the metal rod and the base. I tightened the base, metal rod and started to strung all the wood pieces, starting with the large and heavy ones at the bottom up to the smallest ones at the top. Each wood block was secured with a 5 cm length nail using a pneumatic nail gun.
Although it already looks interesting, I could not use the original paper shade, because it was broken at the corners and it was a little clogged. Plus, as I wrote in the beginning, I was really bored of the lamp. I cut a piece from a jute bag to sew it with a thin piece of rope. Then I sewed it on the metal frame of the lampshade.
The lamp is ready to continue its mission to bring us light many years from now on.