Industrial Pendant Light Almost for Free!

19 Materials
8 Hours

Tutorial team challenge : Recycle me!

WARNING : There is a good reason why I didn't show any electrical connection in this post, and just the makeover steps of the light. I am no expert and I won't tell you how to do electricity. Of course, we shot the power off. Of course, the wires are all covered with connectors and heat shrink tube, none are exposed. All the wires are perfectly attached. The box is fixed
industrial pendant light almost for free
Ok... I must admit it is my first attempt with electricity... For me, it was truly challenging because I have never touched anything electrical before... Needless to say I've never created something electrical neither! I am freaking scared of electricity, so I never tried anything with it... Never, except this one time! Fortunately enough, I have the best hubby  in the world, and the BEST electrical sales rep in the neighborhood!

When I couldn't do something, hubby did it for me (and showed me how!) and, when he couldn't help me, I went to see pros just around the block... they didn't just help me, the GAVE me what I needed to finish this project! Can you believe it? I walk through a store (place where they SELL things to make MONEY), asked for help and they gave me free stuff!!! Man, do I love my big city who acts like if it was a little village! Just to make sure you read well : They gave me free advice AND free stuff to achieve my project! Isn't nice? It helps me keep believing in humanity! Must be Xmas spirit!!
industrial pendant light almost for free
OK, so first, I dissemble everything and kept aside what could be useful for my new lamp :

  • Shades;
  • Lampholder;
  • Screws;
  • Electric covers.
industrial pendant light almost for free
With faux barn wood bought at Home Depot, I created a box. I fixed all the planks together using scrap wood blocks and cement glue.
industrial pendant light almost for free
I displayed the lamp shades on the plank used as a cover. I had 5 shades but decided to use only 4. I marked the holes to be drilled on the plank, for it to receive the electrical wires.
industrial pendant light almost for free
After marking the holes places on the wrong side of the wood, I used a small drill to make a tiny hole. I then turned the plank, cover the holes with masking tape (it helps to make nice holes without the wood crumbling). Then, I used a 3/8" drill to make a bigger hole, the same width as the small screw hoses shown on picture.
industrial pendant light almost for free
Once the holes were made, I inserted the small screw bushings to receive the electrical wires. I had to use a sledgehammer to insert them, since the holes and the hoses were at the same diameter.
industrial pendant light almost for free
Spray painting all the hardware : screw hoses, electric covers and shades.

I intended to spray paint all the shades in black... But I started with the interior part and all the outside smokey details were revealed and I really liked it, so I didn't paint the exterior part of the shades.
industrial pendant light almost for free
I then measured and cut the electrical wires with very precise measurements. I inserted them in the screw hoses, which I sealed with its own nut... Not sure it is the right term to be used!!!
industrial pendant light almost for free
After searching the beams to screw the box to the ceiling,.. I just screwed it there! :)
industrial pendant light almost for free
industrial pendant light almost for free
industrial pendant light almost for free
industrial pendant light almost for free
industrial pendant light almost for free
I am so, so, so very proud of what I achieve with this project... Especially because I knew nothing about electricity before this... And because I saved hundreds of dollars bcz I saw something else then what seems to be trash at first sight!

I truly hope this project will help you see that some of what you consider as garbage could become a real treasure if you dare to spend some time on it! :)

I really enjoy what I created from trash... It gives a real lounge groove to our dining room! :)
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page. More info

Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Gymdandee
    on Dec 23, 2017

    I've been in the electrical industry for over 40 years. I hope you made an Underwriter's Knot! at all the connections.
    It's a technique for tying lamp cord or appliance cord at the point where it joins the plug or socket to reduce strain on the screw terminal connections where the metal parts of the wires connect to the socket or plug and prevent the wires from pulling free. It should also be at the point that the wires go through the nipples in the wood. Did you also install a ground fault wire? that's the green or bare wire. If you did that's good! If not then google how to make the Underwriter's Knot and google ground fault wire.

    • Nikki K.
      on Dec 18, 2018

      Thanks for the reminders! I’m a retired house flipper, & even though we had professional E.E.’s do the majority of re-wiring & upgrade work, they were kind enough to teach me some of these tricks as they worked. I’m thinking of doing this over my breakfast bar, & after 10 years, I probably would have forgotten. Thanks for taking the time to post. Blessings!!!

  • Lui29866159
    on Dec 25, 2017

    Building codes i thought require a non combustible surface to come in contact with the ceiling electrical box. For instance, fiberglass layer or sheet metal covering that area being mentioned coming in contact?

    • Nikki K.
      on Dec 18, 2018

      I think you’re right, however, codes vary between counties. However, I know she got great advice from the local store, however, they should have mentioned that she needed to check her county codes, to be sure she’s complying. You save money and insure safety by doing so. Blessings!!!

  • Melissa Gandee
    on Jun 24, 2018

    Beautiful, I have Edison bulbs but lighting is not great, are yours higher wattage? Love making stuff with wood and metal and this is just so perfect

Join the conversation

2 of 173 comments
  • Val
    on Dec 29, 2018

    You should be very proud of yourself, you did a great job! You also did a smart job, electricity isn't something to mess around with. My dad was an electrical contractor, safety first!

  • Pager63
    31 minutes ago

    I think they are beautiful.

Your comment...