Friday, May 25, 2012

Chicken Wire Light Fixture

I love how a light fixture can add so much to a room, but because our existing light fixtures are fine I have a hard time feeling like I can justify the money to replace any of them. I have seen tutorials that show how to take a wire basket and turn it into a light fixture shade, but I was having a hard time finding just the right basket so I thought I would come up with a way to make my own. I wasn't sure if it would work, but when I realized I already had all the materials I needed, I decided to give it a try. The only additional cost was for the pendant (which was $18.00). It also made me happy to use the chicken wire that was sitting in the garage. It was for another project that I changed my mind on.

Materials Needed:
  • 14 inch embroidery hoop
  • wood filler
  • chicken wire
  • wire
  • wire cutters
  • glue gun
  • round outlet cover
  • spray paint (Oil Rub Bronze)

1) Remove clasp, and putty holes. Here is what my embroidery hoop looked like. It had a wooden clasp hooked to the outer hoop. 

I loosened the clasp which allowed me to take out the inside hoop. I then removed the wooden clasp, taking care not to damage the outer hoop. As shown below, this left me with several holes which I puttied with wood filler. I also had to glue the two loose ends of the hoop together. I used tape to hold them together until the wood glue set.

2) Spray the hoops with ORB spray paint.

3) Open and cut chicken wire. Since it was rolled, it had a natural curve to it. I placed one hoop inside and carefully wrapped the wire around it. Once I had an idea on how much wire I needed, I cut it down leaving it a couple inches bigger just in case.

4) Secure the chicken wire to the hoop by wrapping thin wire around the chicken wire and the hoop. Here is how I did it to make it look as clean as possible from the outside.

Picture 6 shows how the inside of the hoop looks.

Prior to attaching the other hoop, I tried to tame the sharp cut ends of the wire by pinching them flat with pliers.

Like so.

5) Attached the other hoop to the opposite end using the same method.

6) "Sew" the seam. Once you've attached the two hoops, you need to fasten the loose ends of the chicken wire by wrapping them together with the additional wire.

Here is how it looked at this point.

7) Cut a piece of chicken wire to make the top. I left a couple inches excess. Again paying attention to the natural curve of the wire, I placed the concave side facing up/out.

8) Trim excess. This time I trimmed it after it was attached. Once trimmed, turn the sharp wire edges down.

9) Hot glue edges. Because the wire edges were so sharp, I placed a little dab of glue to each end to cover them up.

10) Spray paint it.

11) Spray paint the outlet cover. I just painted the face since it was the only part that would show.

12) Fasten the plate to the inner side of the chicken wire. I used my glue gun for this.

13) I then replaced the old fixture with this one from Lowes.

All finished. I know it's not perfect, but I like it.


  1. Fantastic job!! So perfect for a boy's room.

  2. Wow, such a great tutorial, easy to follow!! And such a great light fixture!!

  3. Great job coming up with how to construct the fixture. It looks fantastic! I wish I had your creativity. Thanks for sharing.:)

  4. Way cool, so do i understand that the one rim of hoop is on the inside of the wire and the other is on the outside?

    1. The hoops are both inside the wire. But once I got finished I wondered if it would have worked just as well if the hoops were on the outside. (I think it would probably look a little nicer/cleaner if they were) Thanks for the nice comment!! :)

  5. I am getting close to making a light fixture to go over my kitchen sink. I was inspired by the mason jar light fixtures but wanted to do something different. So I am collecting the flat old medicene bottles some are clear some have a light greenish tint, none of them will be perfectly clean - that will hopefully be part of their charm. I have a metal rusted flat object with a hole n the middle and I want to run the pendant through there and attach the bottles by wire around their necks and chain around the perimeter of the rd flat object in a two tier configuration & the bottles will become the shade. Need a few more bottles. . .Beth alias Hatefulhannah

    1. Sounds so cool!! Let me know when you finish. I'd love to see it!!

  6. Extremelly cool! I have a lamp shade with no shade, all down to the wire. I think it found its destiny. :p

  7. Wow, you clever girl. Great job! If I didn't live in a climate that necessitates the use of ceiling fans (unless of course you want a $600 month utility bill), I would totally do this in my son's room. Would look cute in a country kitchen as well. I could also see it in a contemporary room painted the color of the moment. . .lime green. Cute! Robyn

  8. This is a fantastic project! I love how the light turned out. Would you consider linking it up at my Pinworthy Projects Party? I hope to see you there!

  9. Popping in from I should be Mopping the floor this is fantastic!

  10. I LOVE this!! What a fabulous idea, Kristi. Your creativity never ceases to amaze me. Thanks so much for linking up at Mop It Up Mondays. I'm featuring you tomorrow!

  11. This is such a great idea! Your house is gorgeous as well. :) Love the house tour! Just became your newest follower. I would love if you would take a minute to stop by Thanks for all your inspiration!

  12. Replies
    1. The color on the top is Polished Silver and bottom color is Stone Mason Gray from Valspar that we had color matched at SW.

  13. Where did you find his bedding? So cute!!

    1. Thank you! I actually sewed the top together and my mom helped me quilt it.

  14. Kristi, That is SO cute!! is there no end to your creativity? ....and that's coming from someone who makes lampshades for a living;-)

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  25. i love the bedding!!! What brand and where did u get that??

  26. I LOVE this light! You did a fantastic job and it goes so well with the style of the room. Pinned!

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  28. Love the light! I am sharing this on Pinterest.