After playing around with the bottles and trying out different things I suddenly had the idea of simply fixing the bottles together at their neck with rubber bands, thereby creating a sphere.
This is the key idea and you're probably good to go on your own from there, but let me share some things I learned in the following steps to make it easier and the result more satisfying for you.
The whole lamp easy to build and doesn't take long to make once you collected and cleaned all these bottles. You'll have an interesting looking lamp for not much effort and time/money investment.
With a medium bright bulb the lamp makes for a great ambient decorating lamp. In the immediate proximity you can still see light spots from where the light shines directly through the bottle ends but this evens out quickly, so it can be used as a ceiling light as well. I plan to turn it into a reading / couch light by building a stand for it.
Step 1: Materials & Tools needed
- about 50 - 60 plastic bottles (I used half a liter bottles but i guess you can use big ones as well). See the next step for preparation / collection tips.
- standard lamp fixture
- standard CFL lamp (I used a medium bright one)
- about 150 - 200 rubber bands (the usual bulk collection of different diameters you can buy at the office supply store is fine, but for optimal results you might have to buy more than one of these since you might not be able to use all of them).
Tools (for preparing the bottles)
- a sharp knife
- 'cleaning gasoline' / soap / label remover (depending on the labels - see next step)
- lots of tissues