How to Upcycle and Refurbish Your Old Chandeliers

Posted by cynthia nielson on

When I bought my house three years ago, it came with the world’s ugliest dining room and entryway light fixtures. They were fake brass candelabra-type fixtures straight out of the 1970s. They required a gazillion tiny, inefficient light bulbs.  After doing a quick search for a new fixture, I quickly realized that instead of wasting money on new fixtures and and the necessary electrician to hang the new fixtures, I could simply "refurbish' the old chandeliers and make them look like updated, modern fixtures.  This would not only serve my budget but would also HELP THE PLANET.  After doing a bit of research, I quickly realized that over 21 million lighting fixtures worldwide are disposed of annually  This is an ASTONISHING amount of rubber-plated electrical wires, aluminum, brass, and mercury-laden CFL lights being buried in landfills and poisoning the surrounding environment. 

There is a better way to breathe new life into your old lighting fixtures and keep them from poisoning the land fills! Here is how I refurbished at least (3) of my old fixtures:

I quickly set out to locate an environmentally friendly spray paint  ( I used Pinty Plus Aqua Based Spray Paint) and easily converted the color of my fixtures from a dark bronze color to a more modern, gold color. 

With my living room chandelier, I attached a selection of natural beige, wood bead garland and drops.  WOW what a difference that made with the fixture!  The before and after is pictured below!


I then attached a set of Turquoise, Wood Bead Magnetic Chandelier Garland to the flat, iron chandelier that was hanging in my bedroom.  Although the fixture below is shown hanging in my living room, I actually have the fixture hanging in my bedroom. Again - what a difference a little spice of color made on this fixture! I also glued a collection of golden wood beads on the  outer rim to give the fixture some added texture. See below!


Lastly, I was able to dress up a very bland, bronze chandelier hanging in my dining room by quickly adding a few strands of magnetic chandelier garland and coordinating magnetic crystal drops.  The image below shows the fixture hanging in my sitting room as I was unable to get a good image of the fixture above my table.  The crystal really gave this chandelier the pop it needed to give my living space a quick revamp!



Coming up with cool chandeliers and DIY lamps ideas is so easy with MagTrims®!

If you must recycle your lighting fixtures, please do this responsibly.  Here's how:

If your community has a permanent facility for accepting e-waste (and most places do), they should be able to take old light fixtures off your hands. If your community does not have an electronic waste disposal center, find out if anyone does special e-waste collection days throughout the year. They are often sponsored by local governments, churches and nonprofits. There may be fees associated with disposal at these events, so inquire about that as well. It is a good idea to remove all the bulbs from your light fixtures before taking them anywhere for recycling. This lowers the likelihood that a bulb will break and injure you. It is also one less step the recycling company must take to disassemble the light fixture. You might also remove any fabric or paper lamp shades. 

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