Introduction: Rope Fender Table Lamp

An elegant table lamp with beautiful shadow effect from scratch materials. I call it a fender lamp because the top resembles the woven fenders used to prevent ships from damage at the quay. I do not know if the same stitch is used, but it looks a lot like it

Step 1: Materials Used:

6mm paracord, aprox. 40 meters ( I had some left over from dismantling an Ikea "Brommö" garden chair)

a "Pringles" can or other cardboard roll

sticky back plastic ( or paper, fabric, wall paper, alu foil....see text step "Finish the base")

little piece of wood, fitting in the cardboard roll

garden or iron wire, approx 1 metre

socket with screw tube, electric wire, plug, lamp, opt.:switch

bottle PVA wood glue


you will also need some tools:

drill ;different sizes drills





Step 2: Start Knotting

Once you get the hang of it, it is not difficult! it may be wise to cut the cord in smaller sections as they are easily melted together if you need more length. At each knot you will have to pull the whole remaining length trough the loop.

Make a simple loop. Curl round the cord and pull the remaining length through the loop. This is known as a half stich. the photo's tell more than i can explain in text. Make similar half stiches along the first loop. When there are 8 pull the other end of the cord to make a tight circle.

Step 3: Top of the Fender

You will need to create a not entirely flat circle. I did this as follows

second row: Make two half stitches in each loop of the first row, you will end up with a circle of 16 (half) stitches

third row: Alternate first loop one half stitch, second loop two half stitches, You will end with a circle of 24 (half) stiches

fourth row: Alternate first loop one half stitch, second loop one half stitch, third two half stitches. If you did everything as planned ther should be 32 (half) stitches

Step 4: Create Height

Continue with 7 rows of 32 stitches. So one half stitch in each former loop. This will create a cilinder and not middle part of a ball. That doesn´t matter, but everyone who want to try to create a perfect ball could look at sequences one uses in crocheting Amigurumi. When you run out of cord heat the end of the used-, and beginning of the new cord with the flame of a matchstick or lighter. Press them together. After 30 seconds moisten your thumb and forefinger and roll the joint between them. There are more elaborate ways to connect two paracords ( e.g the "manny method" see Youtube: connect paracord) but the simple way works for this purpose.

Step 5: Decreasing Stitches

The bottom part should close, much like an inverted step. Skip every third loop and pull the cord tight. After one full circle start to skip every other loop. Go on decreasing until the opening is as large as the cardboard tube. End with a simple knot. Cut the ropeoffend seal with teh flame of a matchstick or lighter.

Step 6: Blow Out

To make the structure firmer and more like a ball, put a balloon inside and blow until fully filled. Dilute the wood glue with a little water ( 4 parts glue- 1 water) and "paint" the knotwork with several layers of glue. It should be adsorbed by the cord and invisible when dry.When fully dried pop the balloon. Yeah!

Step 7: The Base

Find a piece of wood that fits nicely in the cardboard roll. You can make it bit lower than the roll so the sochet will be sunken in the roll. drill a 25 mm ? hole approx. 3 cm from the top. Drill another hole in the top of the block to fit the screw tube to connect the socket. If you are lucky like me the tube fits snug and doesn't need glue.

Step 8: Support for the Fender Hood

With a piece of garden- or iron wire bend a support for the lampshade. You will need approx 1 metre. Leave 30 cm straight. Then bend 1,5 times round the cardboard tube and bend the rest down, parallel to the first straight part. cut the straight parts at the same length. Drill two fitting holes in the top of the woodblock. On the edge, and slightly inward. Place the wire construction in the holes, and try to fit it the tube. Place the shade to test the heigh.

Step 9: Finish the Base

Decorate the cardboard tube as you like. I had a piece of sticky back metal, used for upgrading fridges... But you could paint it, or glue something on. A straw placemat would be nice, some decorative paper or fabric left over from curtains, sofa or cushions. You'll find something...

Then thread the electric wire through the socket, the woodblock, the cardboard roll. Connect socket and plug the right way. You know how, and when you don't know ask someone else!

Step 10: Test, Place and Enjoy

If you've followed the instructable you should end up with a nice stylish light. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I do.