Introduction: Easy Glass Bottle Desk Lamp (no Electrical Work Required!)
Recently, my ancient lamp died and a void was left on my desk. So, instead of buying a new one, I decided to make my own out of bits and pieces I had lying around: a nice old glass bottle, some Christmas lights and a piece of wood. The result was a nice little decorative lamp that made my desk feel complete again.
If, like me, your carpentry skills are limited to cutting a board in a straight line and hammering a couple of nails, and all you know about electrics is how to flip a switch, this project is for you!
Time needed: about half an hour.
- Glass bottle
- Small white Christmas lights with battery pack
- Batteries (for the lights)
- 2 pieces of wooden board: on the hight of the bottle, the other for the base
- Some thin sticks or wood shavings (optional)
- 3 nails
- Saw/x-acto knife
Step 1: Make a Small Slit in the Bottle Cap
With the cap screwed on the bottle, mark where it aligns with the back of the bottle. Then, using the x-acto knife, cut a slit in the side of bottle cap where the mark is, so that when you screw it back on to the bottle it leaves a small hole at the top. This is where the wire of the Christmas lights will come through.
Step 2: Stuff the Lights in to the Bottle
Put the batteries in the battery pack pf the Christmas lights and make sure they work (alway good to check!).
Carefully push the wire with the lights through the bottle's neck, until all the lights are inside. Then screw the cap back on to the bottle, making sure the wire fits through the slit. (If it doesn't, make the slit bigger, so the cap doesn't cut the wire.)
Now you already have a lamp! The rest is just to make it look nicer.
Step 3: Make the Base for the Lamp
Now it's time to join the two pieces of wooden board to make the base. I used a single board that I cut in two pieces with a saw. You will need one piece that is the hight of the bottle, to stand vertical, and another for the base that is long enough to place the bottle and the battery pack on.
On the bottom of the board that is going to be the base, measure where you want the vertical board to line up. Then carefully hammer in the nails one at a time, making sure they go all the way through and in to the vertical board. The result should be a base divided in to two sections, one longer with enough space to hold the bottle, and the other with enough space for the battery pack.
Step 4: Add Edges to the Base to Keep Things in Place
This step is optional, as you can just glue the bottle and the battery pack on to the base. But I wanted to be able to remove the bottle and battery pack, to make it easier to clean and change the batteries. So I added some thin shavings off the board around the edges to keep things in place.
Measure the length of the battery pack and cut two sticks to that size. Then glue them on to the base, with the battery pack snug in the middle. Next, glue another stick on to the base in front of the battery pack. Once the glue has dried, these should keep the battery pack in place, but make it easy to remove by sliding upwards.
For the front, measure and glue three sticks in a square around the base of the bottle, to keep it from slipping. And you're done!
Step 5: Extras and Alternatives
I chose to keep this simple and minimalist, but there's plenty of ways you can have fun with this. Here's a few suggestions:
- Instead of white lights, how about colourful ones for a party?
- If the wood you are using doesn't look good, paint and/or varnish it
- If you don't have a glass bottle, a plastic one should work, too
If you try this out and have any cool additions, let me know!
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