Introduction: Create a Whimsical Mad Hatter Teapot Lamp!

Create a fabulous, whimsical, Mad-hatter inspired statement lamp!
Or several...dozen!

I love doing things in bulk!

Step 1: Collecting Supplies.

You will need teapots, teacups, saucers, odd little ceramic things...

 A lamp kit.  About $8 at Walmart.

1/2 inch Diamond Drill bit! (about $18 at the depot)

Hollow, metal threaded rod...for the center structure.
(I upcycled an old lamp...you can too, unless you are a machinest!)

Light bulb and Lamp shade.

Spray paint

Vinyl decal...optional

Step 2: Disassemble and Drill.

Disassemble your junk lamp.  Keep all the pieces!
I bought so many broken lamps at yard sales and thrift stores...paid about 50 cents to $3 for each.

I took them apart mainly for the center structure rod.  It's a hollow tube with threaded ends on both sides...keep the nuts that thread on it too.
If you are or know a machinest, I bet they can put some fitting threads on either side of a cheap hollow metal rod.
Alas, I am fixing an old lamp and making it better!
But save all the pieces until you are finished, because you may need spacers and weights and stuff...

Because I bought old junky or broken lamps I replaced all the hardware.  Safety third--right?

Next.  The drilling.

Drilling glass, china and ceramics is very basic...seems scary though.

Take a baking sheet and place a bath towel inside it.
Place your plate, teapot, cup or saucer so you are drilling through the bottom on the towel.
Mark with a sharpie marker your center dot.
Pour water onto your "to be drilled" item.  The bottom lip holds the water perfectly.

To begin the drilling, you start slowly at a 45* angle.  When you have carved out a decent half circle groove you slowly bring the bit up straight and bore the hole all the way through. 

This took a lot of time.  Slowly and patiently!  I didn't break any glass!

Each piece just needs a hole straight through it...except your base piece...it needs a hole out the back for the wiring!

Step 3: Stacking Plans.

I took the freshly drilled pieces and stacked them up to see what arrangements I liked.
It was hard to decide because nothing matched!

So I took them out to the garage for their first coating of paint.  PRIMER.

A light layer of white primer on the teacups and some gray primer on the teapots helps tone things down!

Then I decided how they would stack up.

Step 4: Painting and Beautifying!

Then I spray painted the pieces I was using for each lamp.  The color and style is up to you!
If you are doing more than one...take some pictures, so you know how to reassemble them when they are painted!

I added some swirly floursihes I cut out of vinyl.  You could paint designs or whatever you like!

Step 5: Wiring...and Praying!

After the pieces are dry, assembling the lamp.

Start by putting your wires through the back base hole.
Put the threaded nut on the wire.
Insert your threaded rod inside the base.
Push your wires through the center of the rod until they come out of the top.
Secure the nut on the bottom threads.  Use some pliers to make sure it's tight.

Then stack your pieces up and up until you reach the top!
At the top, secure it in place.  I used a spacer from the original lamp that I tore apart.

Then the actual wiring.  Don't panic!
Thankfully the full instructions are included in your lamp kit...how to tie the wires, which one to hook on which screw...
I am not including them here, because lamps vary.  Just read your kit instructions.  It's easy.

Then pray.

Insert light bulb.

Plug in your lamp.

Switch it on!

Step 6: Ta Da!

You lamp is finished!

Now you have a fabulous custom Mad-Hatter Teapot Lamp!

Instant conversation piece.

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Comments

author
shazni (author)2012-09-19

Did you glue one tea cup on to another? I'm a bit nervous about it toppling over...when i do stacking up lamps i generally either glue or nail...depends on the raw product :-)

author
doodlecraft (author)shazni2012-09-20

You can use a glue, like E6000...I didn't. They are supported with a threaded hollow center rod, so I figured that would be enough. I have seen where the lamps are drilled and glue together, then just the flimsy lamp cord runs up the center, although I haven't tried that...should still work! :)

author
huntnchick (author)2012-09-14

Yea! I voted again! ;)

You know I love your work Nat!

author
CazzPhoenix (author)2012-09-14

I really will do this someday... just have to find a top hat for the shade when I do.

author
doodlecraft (author)CazzPhoenix2012-09-14

Brilliant idea!

author
omnibot (author)2012-09-14

Ha ha ha XD Oh, ye gods that is AWESOME! I laughed so hard!

author
Treasure Tabby (author)2012-09-13

What a great and cool idea.
Oh and the best part is you can get your supplies at a garage sale or a charity store where those nick-nacks are dirt cheep since they're used.

author

Yes! That's where I get mine...best part is, if they are chipped or lightly broken and they still work for the lamp! One of those teapots didn't even have a bottom...I just stacked it on a plate! And thrift stores will usually just give you broken pieces or they make them even more discounted! :)

author
The King of Random (author)2012-09-12

I remember you working so hard in your garage making these! They look so good and professional!

author

Yes yes! I've sold some for $100 each too! :) Way worth it!

author

Way to go! That's incredible. You have a brilliant mind :D

author
nodoubtman (author)2012-09-12

original idea!

author
doodlecraft (author)nodoubtman2012-09-12

Thanks! They catch a lot of attention! :)

author
Penolopy Bulnick (author)2012-09-12

Lovely! Even though the original pots and tea cups have such cute designs, it really does look much better together after the repainting you did. Good idea :)

author

Thanks! It was hard (at first) to drill and spray paint such lovely pieces...but I love the matchyness. I found the bombay blue china partial set at a thrift store ($8)...but there was only 1 teacup...(and after making sure the set wasn't worth real money, I drilled it)...it made the perfect matching lamp set. I gave that one to my best friend who collects Teapots! :)

author
scoochmaroo (author)2012-09-12

This is stunning. Is your house now just full of teapot lamps or do you sell them? I can imagine them being all the rage at a craft fair.

author
doodlecraft (author)scoochmaroo2012-09-12

Thank you! :)
I have 2. One in my bedroom, one in the living room! I gave a few as gifts and yes, sold some! It's more than covered the costs I put into making all of them--can't beat that!

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Bio: Hi! My name is Natalie! I have an awesome husband that lets me be a Play-at-home mom of 3! We homeschool and do projects daily ... More »
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