I haven’t posted a lot lately, because the fall brings marching season (and drowning busy-ness), and we’re taking a hiatus from major house projects so that:

a) Doug can get the basement EXACTLY the way he wants it after the flood, and….

b) we have to refill the project bank account.

Being a responsible adult is boring and tedious. I’m hoping to find some small, free, or cheap projects to get started on between now and Christmas….because otherwise my creative juices will get stuck and I’ll explode – which is terribly hard to get out of the drapes.

So, bear with me – I wish I had GIANT room-sized projects to show you, but this is real life, so we have to wait. So lame. But once we’re done waiting WE’RE DOING A BATHROOM!!!!! I’m so beyond incredibly excited.

I love lighting, I love chandeliers, and our street is FAMOUS for Halloween – everyone goes all out. So last year, I said to Doug, “Would it be ridiculous to make a Halloween Chandelier, and we could switch out the lighting on the porch just for Halloween?”

He said, “Yes, it’s completely ridiculous. But I’ve met you, and so has everyone else. So this seems totally rational.”

So I decided this would be my Fall Break project!

I started with a really plain run-of-the-mill brass chandelier.

dsc_0196

These are the types of builder-grade chandeliers often used in new constructionΒ that no one really loves (but they’re FINE), so people switch them out for something that they adore, and then these end up at Goodwill or Habitat Restore for $10.

dsc_0198

This is good because it’s cheap, and it’s a really simple palette to add things to.

dsc_0200

I wanted to paint it, so I taped off all the electrical bits with painter’s tape. You can also give the brass a light sand to make paint adhere better – I skipped this step, partly because I was lazy, but also because I wanted the light to look old and beat up, so if some of the paint scratched off, it would add to the effect.

dsc_0202

And then I took it outside and sprayed it purple! In this picture, it looks a little more navy – but it’s got some plum in it.

img_1159

I sprayed the candle covers black. As we’ve been restoring lights, I asked Doug to build me a stand to be able to spray candle covers any color I want. I have used it so much!

img_1165

I wanted to use skulls as candle covers, and I found some at the Dollar Store. If you do this, buy a few extra so you have some to make mistakes on! I used the real candle cover as a template.

img_1180

I drew a circle using the candle cover as the template.

img_1181

Then I cut to the inside of the circle with a blade.

img_1182

The circle is ugly and jagged. But THAT’S OKAY, because the pressure of the imperfect circle is going to be what holds the candle cover in place.

img_1183

TA DA!

img_1184

The Dollar Store skulls look pretty cheap (because they’re a dollar), so I did a little faux painting to give them a little texture. I used an almost dry brush to get some black paint on first.

img_1185

And then I used a towel to blot and wipe a lot of it off.

img_1176

And THEN I used some champagne / metallic paint to go over the whole head and make it a little shiny. Because skulls need a little bling. I ALMOST painted a gold tooth. But I thought it might be too much.

img_1179

I wanted to add some crystals, and I found some chain that was in a box of crystals that I got at auction. These were so dirty and filthy that they looked gray, so they couldn’t have been more perfect.

img_1186

I used chandelier wire to crudely attach the crystals. If this was a year-round chandelier, I would do this more permanently.

img_1187

img_1189

Time to play outside!

dsc_0203

The house skeleton is keeping a fierce eye on Doug throughout this process.

dsc_0206

Awaiting their close-up.

dsc_0210

All hung up!

dsc_0211

Doug switched the breaker back on – and we have light! I used itty-bitty low-wattage night-light bulbs.

dsc_0213

The next three pictures are really fun. Doug grabbed the camera while I put the covers on, and he COMPLETELY captured my joy at seeing the light come through the skull for the first time.

dsc_0214

dsc_0215
Total joy. I love this shot that he snagged.

dsc_0220

Final step? Add some cobwebs.

dsc_0226

dsc_0228

dsc_0231

I took a few at night, but it’s so hard to get good night shots. But you get the idea!

img_1222

img_1232

Cheap. Easy. SO FUN. And there were already people who stopped their cars on the street to look at it. I’m super excited about it!

dsc_0215-1

This is going to be a fun Halloween!!!!

13 comments

  1. The timing of this post couldn’t have been more perfect! I just finished reading your entire blog yesterday, it took me a month to catch up after I found you through Circa. Your bedroom turned out fabulous! I had thought, β€œBlack, ew gross, but it looks great. The black really sets off the wood millwork.

    Karen

  2. I loved this idea and I think at least one of your skull folks should have that gold dental work “done”. Thanks for all the inspiration!

  3. I agree — one gold tooth isn’t too much. It’s a bonus for people who really are paying attention.

    This is a fabulous idea!

  4. This is such a creative and fun project idea! I am going to have to modify this for my dining room chandelier!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s