I'm fortunate enough to live in a big city, in a highly populated neighborhood, where people throw away often very re-useable things on regular basis.
I have a soft spot in my heart for old lamps, and often have trouble letting them make that final trip to the landfill. Inspired by some of the wonderful Steampunk creations I've seen on Instructables.com, I decided to create my own Steampunk-style lamp, which I have affectionately named Lanterna Antiga, Portuguese for "Old Lamp."
I named this project in honor of my Brazilian father-in-law, who's a brilliant engineer and architect and loves to create things. In trying to describe the whole Steampunk aesthetic to him, he came up with what I thought was a brilliant, if simplified, description of Steampunk. Loosely translated from the Portuguese, this was: "Something new in antique clothes."
Step 1: Find an Old Lamp
I particularly like the old Victorian-style key, which would have been used to raise the wick, but now serves as a switch!
If you have an old oil lamp you'd like to convert to electric, there's a fine 'ible here: "Convert old oil lamp to electrical."
And if you have brazing or welding skills and tools, you could probably make something like this with an oil lamp and old brass candle stick