Thursday, August 8, 2013

DIY Beer Growler Lamp


Sooooooo, I'm re-doing our guest bedroom. It's been a lot of fun, it's just been kind of slow because I'm making or re-finishing a lot of things myself and I'm spreading it out so that financially it's not a huge burden all at once. So far I've made a headboard, changed up the bedding (I think the throw pillows are the most expensive thing in the room, go figure), added some cute wall art, refinished a dresser (mostly... still waiting on some fancy knobs to come from Etsy-land), re-vamped an ugly old lamp that came from +Aaron's bachelor pad, and added some cute knick-knacks here and there. I only need a few more things for the walls to make it complete...and trust me I'll post a whole bunch of pictures when it's all finished!

Today I'm presenting you with quite possibly the coolest thing in the ENTIRE ROOM. A Lamp made out of a beer bottle... and I did it myself!

I was inspired by this absolutely gorgeous DIY Bottle Lamp from theinspiredroom.net. I actually went looking for a glass water cooler bottle but found them being sold for upwards of $100 on Etsy and Ebay and that just wasn't in my budget... not to mention that I think the lamp would wind up being WAY too big for the space that I had in mind.

Aaron and I are REALLY into beer. We homebrew, we've visited a bajillion craft breweries in NC and VT and everywhere in between so I thought that making a lamp out of a beer growler would be really cool and really display a passion of ours.

SUPPLIES

Beer Growler (clear) - FREE ( technically you probably paid a bottle deposit )
Modge Podge - Gloss (optional) - I had some already but it's about $5-6 for an 8oz jar
Green & Blue Food Coloring (optional) - who doesn't have food coloring?
Foam Brush (optional) - I had these already too but I they're about $1 each.
Lamp Socket - $4.06
Lamp Wire (I recommend the clear kind even though it's a little pricier) - $6.27
3/4 inch Rubber Chair Leg Tips - $2.19 for a set of 4 (and you only need 1)
Drill/Handy Boyfriend - free (kind of)
Lamp Shade - $10-20 ( I paid $14.97 at Lowe's for the one shown)



 *DO NOT BUY A LAMP MAKING KIT* They tend to come with shorter, white cords and the bottle plugs they come with are too small for the mouth of the growler. Also all the kits I found were for harp style lamp shades and all the fun decorative and inexpensive lamp shades are the kind that just sit on the socket.

DIRECTIONS

1. Acquire and Stain your Growl (if desired)

The guest room's colors are mainly whites, teals, and greys so I needed a light colored base to my lamp. Most growlers come in brown but I had two clear growlers in our giant stash (seriously, we have SOOO many). I really liked the blue tint of the lamp from theinspiredroom.net so I decided that I would tint my glass a shade of blue. It's super easy and I've been tutorials on Pinterest for a while. 

Glass Tinting Paint = 1/4 cup of Modge Podge, 2 drops blue food coloring, 1 drop green food coloring
Paint the glass in even, vertical brush strokes. Let dry. 


This method of glass tinting is NOT waterproof and leaves some texture (which I like). You can buy permanent/texture free glass tinting liquids at craft stores - I already had all the materials for this method so it was a no brainer. Both of the growlers shown below are from local Raleigh breweries. Roth Brewing Company is no longer in business so it was pretty convenient to turn their growler into a lamp since I can't go to the brewery to refill it anymore. I even think the clear growler would look great without staining the glass, here's how they look side by side:


2. Assemble Into a Lamp

I bet when you read the supplies list you were like "WTF do I need Rubber Chair Leg Tips for?!?" I shall enlighten you... but first I will tell you a story: 

We were wandering around a big box home improvement store carrying my tinted blue growler trying to find pieces to make this lamp (for like the fifth time since starting this project) and asked an associate in an orange apron if they had any corks or rubber plugs that would fit in the jug. He said he didn't think so but told us to try the rubber chair leg toppers in aisle 12. HOLY COW, HE'S A GENIUS! The 3/4 inch tip fits perfectly!

Drill a hole in the top (solid end) of the chair leg tip that the socket can fit snuggly inside. Put the rubber into your growler to determine how deep it will go in, make note of this and then drill a smaller hole in the side of the tip for the wire to come out of. This is so the wire can sit in back of the lamp without having to be seen/and so that you don't have to drill a hole in your glass (because that sounds complicated and I didn't want to buy any extra tools). 

Pull your wire through the smaller hole on the side of the rubber tip and then wire up into lamp socket - there are instructions on the packaging on how to do this... I am not an electrician and don't want to be responsible for you burning your house down so I won't give you specifics on this step. 






















Now you should have a working light socket! You can see the wires in the neck of the jug in the photo above, the plug hangs discretely in back of the lamp so you don't see it all! 

Thread your lamp shade onto the socket ( I secured it with a couple of very small dabs of hot glue because it seemed a little wobbly). Screw in your light bulb and VOILA, a wonderful beer themed lamp... that actually works!



Here's a preview of the lamp in our guestroom. You can see the new bedding/throw pillows, DIY headboard (coming soon to a blog near you), and the dresser makeover (minus cool knobs). It's starting to look pretty spiffy in there!



If you're interested in some of the other decor seen in these photos check out some of my other cool projects from my guest bedroom makeover :

DIY Starburst MirrorDIY "No Tools" Headboard
Guest Bedroom Furniture Revamp

4 comments :

  1. AWESOME I will try this with an extra glass carboy I have. I think I might put some glass beads in the bottom - OOOoooOOO sparkly!

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  2. I can only imagine the awesomness out of making a lamp out of a carboy. I bet it will look great! A nice and big statement lamp.

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  3. Thanks for this tutorial! I am setting up my bar/man cave room and I am going to fill a clear growler with layers of different brewing grains and turn it into a lamp just like this.

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    1. That sounds awesome! I hope it turned out well!

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