Introduction: Make a Lamp From a Bottle
Using part from the hardware store, you can make a lamp out of an old bottle for about ten bucks.
Step 1: Gather Materials and Tools
You will need:
-a suitable bottle:
I used a champagne-like bottle from the Brooklyn Brewery's delicious refermented brew, Local One. Use any bottle you like, so long as it's heavy enough to balance your lamp hardware.
I bought a package at Home Depot with all the parts, but you can easily gather them: a stabilizing plug to fit your bottle opening (rubber stopper) with a hole in the middle, a short section of threaded bar to fit inside the stopper, a basic bulb socket with cap, switch, and shell, some electrical wire, and a wall plug.
-lamp harp to support shade
-wingnut to secure shade to harp
-small phillips head screwdriver
Step 2: Plug the Bottle
Adjust the size of your rubber stopper to fit in your bottle. I did this by shaving off the sides with a utility knife until it fit. Place the threaded rod through the stopper with about 1/4 inch protruding, and fit the assembly into the bottle. I then shaved down the remaining stopper to make it flush.
Step 3: Wire the Lamp
Place the harp base and socket cap on the threaded rod, and tighten down the socket cap with your screwdriver. Then thread your electrical wire through the hole in the cap, and tie a "underwriter's knot." (See image.) wrap the stripped ends of your wire around the terminal screws on the socket and tighten them down. Then slide the paper-lined socket shell down over the whole thing, and clip the socket assembly into the socket cap. There are little teeth that lock in to the cap's grooves, so just rock it back and forth until it clicks and is steady.
Step 4: Add Bulb and Shade
Screw in your bulb, add the top of the harp and the shade, and plug 'er in! If there aren't any sparks, you've wired it correctly and without any shorts. Flip the switch and bask in the glow!