Asked on Jan 15, 2015

Copper Metal Spool repurposing? Help!

by Erica
Hi! I have been racking my brain trying to repurpose three copper metal spools that I have. The only ideas I have seem (to me) a bit lame. I have thought of sectioning each part with wood to create a small flower 'box' however there must be some people on here that might have better ideas than me just trying to sell them for 15$ each. They're quite industrial looking which is throwing me off as I'm more of a country farmhouse style person.
  47 answers
  • Karen Karen on Jan 15, 2015
    Maybe a wine rack?
  • Carole Carole on Jan 15, 2015
    Could they take a light fitting and bulb and be used as industrial looking lampshades? Might look good in a big warehouse type space? If they are too big for that - I have no idea what size these are - could you put a piece of MDF over the top and make into little seats or stools? You could always pad the MDF with foam and cover with fabric or paint the MDF? When you take a photo, if you include something else in the photo so we can get an idea of the size in comparison that helps to get some good answers or include the dimensions of the object in your post.
    • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Jan 15, 2015
      @Carole they would look pretty cool as is with edison bulbs. Love your lighting idea.
  • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Jan 15, 2015
    @Erica I came on to share my idea of a lighting fixture but @Carole beat me to it LOL. You could also do a blingy lamp by using a repurposed old lamp base and perhaps string glass beads along the frame - need a place where this would fit in though - perhaps easier to fit in as a hanger in a corner needing a little pizzazz.
  • Johanna Smith Johanna Smith on Jan 15, 2015
    How big are they?? I like the light fixture idea with Edison bulbs --- if they are big enough you could lay them on their side and make an occasional table/ coffee table or ottoman. Wall hanging to display knick knacks after you add some rough wood for shelves?? book shelf if they are big enough?? the possibilities are endless --- I would have fun with these :D
  • Erica Erica on Jan 15, 2015
    They're smaller unfortunately- about 10"-12" however the light fixture idea is fantastic! Thanks everyone!
  • Erica Erica on Jan 15, 2015
    And I really appreciate all the awesome suggestions. :)
  • I actually have one of these myself that my husband brought home for me because "it just looked like something I'd like" according to him (he knows me so I have been trying to figure out what to do with it for months now, so it's funny that as soon as I saw yours, a couple of ideas popped into my head. I make jewelry (among MANY other crafts) and have been looking for a way to DIY a "Clip It Up" storage carousel that's usually used for scrapbooking and use it instead for sorting strung beads and chain. I have been on the look out for the wire skeleton from an old lampshade to make one by attaching it to a center post and turntable and it just occurred to me that this would work just as well if not better because it would have two levels, one for shorter items on top/longer ones on the bottom. My other thought was to basically make the same thing to actually store/display your own jewelry - earrings/bracelets on the top and necklaces from the bottom. You could even simply place the center of the spool over the neck of a wine bottle and achieve the same effect and not have to break out any tools or hardware.....I also like the lighting Idea a lot....very steampunk-ish!
  • First thing I wanted to make with that beauty is an industrial light fixture. No shade just light.
  • Janiel Phillips Janiel Phillips on Jan 16, 2015
    My cooking utensils have hooks on the end, so I imagined this is a "country/farmhouse" kitchen attached flat to the ceiling with the fish slice, ladle, and soup ladle etc hanging from it.
  • Gabriella Olocco Gabriella Olocco on Jan 16, 2015
    I think you could use them to make a lamp. What do you you think of my idea?
  • 994568 994568 on Jan 16, 2015
    I have never been to this site... but an email popped up with 6 photos showing repurposed projects... and your photo. My jaw dropped & I wondered if it was me that wrote the question! About 4 years ago I too had 3 of those exact spools!! I held onto them for a couple years & sometime last year sent them away with the metals on the annual garbage pick up. Love the industrial light idea... without a shade would be can get the muted lights so they don't shine too brightly but these types usually look best with the old fashioned, bright white bulb! I'm picturing just a simple black cord hanging down from the ceiling! These would look great over a kitchen island, or at staggered heights in the middle of an airy guest room, in a sun room, game room, in a straight line over a pool table... I want mine back!! Have fun with these. :)
  • Car1123134 Car1123134 on Jan 16, 2015
    Wine glass chandelier?
  • Debbie Cable Debbie Cable on Jan 16, 2015
    They would look awesome stacked in a triangle as a wine rack. Also as a country farmhouse lamp shade for a floor lamp weaved with wicker.
  • Ramona Lundrigan Sturge Ramona Lundrigan Sturge on Jan 16, 2015
    hang it on wall and put rolled up towels in it for industrial style bathroom
    • Dee Dee on Jan 16, 2015
      @Ramona Lundrigan Sturge Very cool idea! This would be a great idea for old canning/processing racks,too.
  • Lisa O. Lisa O. on Jan 16, 2015
    You could attach wood legs and a top and make a side table or two.
  • Robin Miller Robin Miller on Jan 16, 2015
    They scream Steam Punk don't they?
  • Susan Ellwitz Susan Ellwitz on Jan 16, 2015
    They are screaming 'chandeliers'!
  • Cynthia M Cynthia M on Jan 16, 2015
    Hang on the wall and use to store rolled up towels in the bathroom or kitchen.
  • Jonny Appleseed Jonny Appleseed on Jan 16, 2015
    Put pole in middle and mount on pole out side by porch and hang plants on it!!
  • Sandra Walker Sandra Walker on Jan 16, 2015
    I'm like Susan Ellwitz. I would buy some Crystals and make me a beautiful Chandelier. I can picture it now. It would be so, so very beautiful. And you can even get some beads and wrap around it after you put the Crystals on it. Not many beads because it wouldn't need many. I might even paint it first. You have so many possibilities. I would go crazy with all of the possibilities you have. But I think I would have to go with the Chandelier because I love them so much. Good Luck with your decision and please let us know what you decide to do.
  • Karin Carson Karin Carson on Jan 16, 2015
    Hang in bathroom and roll your face clothes and towels then place in the spaces.
  • Erica Erica on Jan 16, 2015
    Thanks again everyone :) Since I have three, I'll be able to do a couple of different things- one definitely is going to be a light fixture and the others I'm contemplating just using them as wall hangings. :)
  • Sha1123957 Sha1123957 on Jan 16, 2015
    My son made me plant stands by welding 2 or 3 together and painting them with outdoor paint ,over 15 years ago and I still use them on my deck.
  • Dianne Miller Dianne Miller on Jan 16, 2015
    This just screams outdoor chandelier ... Wire some solar icycle lights arund each ring...too cute from a big old country tree out back!
  • Marie M Marie M on Jan 16, 2015
    Wine rack
  • Junkaroo Junkaroo on Jan 16, 2015
    I have several of these also. They are the spools from mig wire for the welder. They scream lamp shade to me. For feathers w/glitter, keys, spoons, etcetera. Those are my plans for the ones I have. Enjoy!
  • 9530106 9530106 on Jan 16, 2015
    I have been wanting to make a steam punk wind chime, wish I had one of your cool spools. HMM, my brother is a welder!
    • See 1 previous
    • 9530106 9530106 on Jan 17, 2015
      One of our local thrift shops had a container full of beautiful, old pieces for $5. I only picked out one beautiful, large silver spoon, and gave them $1.50 or $2.00 for it. I have kicked myself ever since!
  • Lilli H Lilli H on Jan 16, 2015
    Light fixture, wall hanging, or something outdoors--would love to see the copper get that beautiful green patina over time.
  • Marcella Hazelwood Marcella Hazelwood on Jan 16, 2015
    first thought that came to me was a beautiful chandelier with lace or crystals or whatever flips yer boat, then i also thought of the table... with glass on top and cool legs and even cooler items in the spaces.what ever u do take pics
  • Lee Cunningham Green Lee Cunningham Green on Jan 17, 2015
    Some chain and lights great kitchen lighting, if you have a nice size kitchen, a pot hanger with some hooks. I think they are cool.
  • Kyle J Carlson Kyle J Carlson on Jan 17, 2015
    You could attach thin a wooden veneer strip around with hot glue to make a lampshade or pendant lamp.
  • Mary Kincaid-Cummings Mary Kincaid-Cummings on Jan 17, 2015
    I would buy one for $15 plus shipping if you decide not to use them all.
  • Dee Dee on Jan 17, 2015
    I saw this on Pinterest - for planting in- check it out! Here's the link
  • Bonnie Lee Spencer Bonnie Lee Spencer on Jan 17, 2015
    i would make coffee tables out of them
  • Donna Donna on Jan 18, 2015
    First thing I thought of was a clock or could hand from ceiling to dry hand washables etc.
  • Rebecca Van Campen Rebecca Van Campen on Jan 25, 2015
    Lampshade, coffee table, hose reel! All would turn to verdigris outside. Or take to local scrapyard....people here are stealing copper pipes from homes empty AND LIVED IN for big bucks.
  • Shannon Gravitt Shannon Gravitt on Feb 25, 2015
    I have one of those spools and it still has a lot of the copper wire it holds. I was thinking of hanging copper cookie cutters from it with the wire and putting a light in the center.
  • Jerri Watts Jerri Watts on Feb 28, 2015
    Put stoppers on each side and use as a wine rack
  • Elizabeth Johnson Elizabeth Johnson on Aug 02, 2015
    It could make a lovely outdoor hanging lamp for the patio. (Maybe even indoor
  • Kristi Kristi on Nov 08, 2015
    I have 7 of these. I used them to display desserts at a reception. Now I want to use them as garden art and welcome ideas (bonus if you have pictures to share!).
  • Donna Donna on Nov 13, 2015
    Stack and secure them together. Search for a unique topper. The copper will oxidize and the patina will look beautiful in your garden. You can even let an annual vine grow up the copper. The annual will die in the winter and you will have your garden art to view all winter. Or plant annuals around the bottom and the copper tower coming up out of the middle will be great.
  • Qui4050795 Qui4050795 on Jan 18, 2016
    I have 3 of those and have been trying to figure out what to do with them! I think I will just hang them in my office as wall decor.
  • Ken Brooks Ken Brooks on Feb 13, 2021

    I know this is kind of old, but if anybody has one of these I would gladly buy it off you for $15. It would meet a specific need that I have, for revitalizing old, stiff, tightly coiled 3D printing filament.

  • Deb K Deb K on Oct 14, 2022

    Hello, hope this helps you out. You could use it for a wine rack.

  • Mogie Mogie on Oct 14, 2022

    Just cause it looks industrial you can add modern farmhouse items to make this more farmhouse.

    Could be a photo center where new photos are adhered via a cloths pins.

    If you put these on an axle they appear like they could spin.

    Possibly use these for a frame for a wreath.

    Almost anything in the garden since copper changes color over time. Maybe vines growing thru this.

    if you have a daughter a jewlery or earring tree.

  • Katie Saunders Katie Saunders on Jul 31, 2023

    Not sure of the dimensions/how well it would work, but my first thought was - lampshade/light fixture ☺️

  • Deb K Deb K on Sep 19, 2023

    Hi Erica, you could use it as an industrial light shade.