Tuesday, February 7

An unconventional DIY Pendant Chandeleir

There was something about the dining room that just didn't feel right to me.  At first I thought it was the paint color.  So we went from beige to gray.... but there was still something about the room.  Something was off.  I felt pretty happy with everything else in the room, table, mirror, buffet, curtains, rug, but something was off.  Ever get that feeling?  You walk out the room only to walk back in a few minutes later, forcing yourself to love the new space, knowing something is off.....

It was the light - the very traditional 5 arm chandelier - blah.   Functional yes, but definitely not my style

I really like the ceiling medallion.....but the chandelier needed to go.  So I got to work brainstorming an idea  to replace the light.  We didn't feel like taking the existing light down and getting an electrician etc etc.  My immediate thought was to get a drum pendant or maybe a capiz chandeleir, similar to the one in my master bedroom back in Connecticut.  I love drum pendants but due to the size of the room and ceiling height, I knew we would have to spend $$$ to get a drum to fit the scale of the room.

The unanimous decision was definitely drum pendant...and for fun we decided to DIY.  I cant take all the credit for the final product, Mr. Show Off did most of the work and actually came up with the idea of using a office chair carpet protector......yes one of these (I know crazy idea - but it worked!)
Now, I am not recommending that you follow this technique, I know its a little out of the box, but it worked for us.  So if you want to try our method....here we go:

From my research I found that most people who DIY drum pendants use plexi-glass which they have cut to size but we used an office chair carpet protector, which I guess is like plexi-glass, only thicker??  The tools involved were the following:

Office chair carpet protector or plexi-glass cut to size
Circular saw (a hacksaw would work too)
A drill
8 drywall screws
12 nuts
Heavy grade electrical shape (we used Gorilla tape)
Spray adhesive
Fabric (for the drum and for the diffuser)
A chandelier already in place that you want to cover

To create the shell of the drum we cut the carpet protector lengthwise so that we had 2 narrow "strips".  These strips would later be joined together by using the drywall screws.
We carefully lined up both strips together, allowing for a slight overlap where they joined. We then screwed in 4 drywall screws (attaching a nut tightly onto each screw once screwed in) down the length of the overlap  and evenly spaced, to secure together. Repeat this process on the other side so that you have your "shell".

To be sure we kept the form in tact, we then wrapped Gorilla tape around the "shell" to help give it form and also help maintain its form.  It wasn't pretty yet and looked like this:

The electrical tape is where we cracked some of the plastic.  To save it we applied tape to either side of the cracks.  They were minor but I wanted to reinforce the cracks with something.
I could see our vision!  I was so excited at this point that I ran out to get the fabric that we would use to wrap this thing and left Mr. Show off to finish his part.

*Note: You want to make sure you select long enough screws that will hook onto the chandelier bulb covers, this is how the pendant stays in place.  To create the "hook" you simply attach another nut to the end of each screw, being sure to screw it on just enough so that the bulb cover has something to hold onto.  Test out hanging your pendant before apply your fabric so that you can make adjustments to the screws before covering them with fabric. This may sound confusing and I don't have a pic but I will take one soon and add it for your reference.

Once the screws are in and the tape is secure all that is left is the fun part, the decorating of the drum!

After measuring the width and height of the drum I headed to the fabric store and picked a medium weight fabric.

I then cut it to size, leaving a little extra so that it would slightly wrap around the edge of the drum on both the top and bottom.

Before you get to wrapping the drum you must attach your diffuser. Unlucky for me I forgot about the diffuser fabric at the fabric store and used an old bronze-y curtain instead as mt fabric.   To attach the fabric for the diffuser, I layed my drum shell over the curtain and cut all around leaving a little fabric around the edge.

Then you get your spray adhesive and spray around the bottom edge of the drum carefully attaching your fabric up against the bottom edge as you go.  Let dry for 20 minutes.

Next get your drum fabric out.

Do you see the clean edge on the left?  That required no sewing! All I did was fold over the raw edge evenly down the length of the fabric and sprayed fabric adhesive every few inches to secure the clean edge.  Do this to all the raw edges.

After 20 minutes your diffuser is ready and you can now attach the drum fabric wrap.

Very carefully start spraying your wrap with adhesive and attach the clean edge to the very edge of the bottom of the drum like so

Go all the way around until you meet the other edge and you have a nice tight seam.  Now flip your drum over to fold in and glue to overlap of fabric across what will be the top of the drum..it should look like this

Let the fabric and glue dry for another 20 minutes or so and go ahead and hang your drum over your existing chandelier, being sure to maneuver it so that the screws grip onto the existing bulbs.

Here is the before and after.

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