DIY Chandelier

Posted by on Apr 30, 2011 in Crafts | 6 comments

DIY Chandelier

Until just recently the ceiling light in our bedroom looked like this:

Nothing better than falling asleep and waking up to a big bronze and frosted glass boob, right?  You see these all the time in new construction and flipped houses.

Still, I wasn’t planning on doing anything about it until I ran across a few blog posts that inspired me to create this:

100% improvement, right? Before I get into how I made it, let’s do a little cost comparison.

You can get this capiz shell chandelier from West Elm for $150 bucks.  It’s 8″ in diameter.

My chandelier is almost twice as wide, but it’s made out of wax paper so it hardly cost anything!

Lamp shade from Goodwill: $4
Three rolls of wax paper: $10
Metal wire: $3
White lamp base: $5
Cup hooks: $.75
Total: $22.75

Add back in the value of bragging rights for having made it, and it was essentially free.

Here’s how I made it:

I found this trumpet-shaped lamp shade at Goodwill.  I probably spent too much time searching for the perfect shape, but I wanted to achieve that classic, drapey, chandelier look.

I tore off all the fabric before bringing it inside for fear of bed bugs.  I eventually added two more rings of wire around the middle of the frame.

The wax paper discs were made by ironing three sheets of wax paper in between two sheets of parchment paper, then cutting out 2″ circles with a circle cutter.  I don’t have any photos of this process, but it took a couple weeks during my spare time.

I decided on the length of each row and then got started sewing the rings together on my machine.

I hung the chandelier temporarily from a light in my living room while I sewed and tied for about a week:

At this point I started getting super excited:

Once the chandelier was ready, it was time to switch out the boob light.  I bought a $5 white base at Lowes and Ray installed it for me.  Not only could I not reach the ceiling while standing on the bed, but touching the power wires (even though the power was off and we tested it with a multimeter) freaked me out.

Then we simply hung then chandelier with white cup hooks and rejoiced!


  1. Can you come to the farm and help me with some interior decorating????…Just love your stuff Jen !!!!!

  2. Gorgeous!

  3. WOW!!!!! I absolutely love this idea! LOVE IT! I’m currently facing the issue of having no electric wiring in my living room..hate it! Got a plug in from IKEA and a lamp shade which is ok but the light shows only where the ‘lamp shade’ permits. I’m in need of help– any suggestion would help.

  4. I’m making this today – wish me luck!!

  5. Jen,

    This is the prettiest faux capiz chandelier I’ve seen. About how many discs did you use?

    • Hi Michelle,

      Hmm, I’m not sure how many discs it took, but it did take three rolls of wax paper. I definitely recommend using a circle cutter to make things easier!

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