Step by Step Directions for Making a Driftwood Lamp
A driftwood lamp is one of the simplest things you can make with driftwood – don’t be intimidated. You would really have to work at it to make a driftwood lamp that DOES NOT look good. It’s a matter of placing and attaching the driftwood pieces in a position that you find pleasing to the eye. But, first things first – find yourself a lamp base that you want to use or buy a kit with all the necessary pieces.
1. Gather your Driftwood. If you don’t have a local source, we have driftwood available in varying sizes. There are also other sellers on Etsy with varying prices.
2. Find your Lamp. For the lamp I’m working with here, I found the lamp at a thrift store for $8.00 and tested it before leaving the store to make sure it still worked. This particular lamp was an easy one to work with as it was just a metal rod sitting on a metal base. What I particularly liked was that it had a pull chain on/off switch. Find a lamp that is the right height for the pieces of driftwood that you will be working with and one that you can easily take apart down to the rod. Some lamps will not have a rod but that’s okay – a creative mind will be able to use driftwood pieces to create a base. In that instance, you could use long thin driftwood pieces like we are using here or you could use unique and bulkier pieces to create your base and you won’t have to try to hide the rod. Just make sure your driftwood lamp base is stable.
Glue – I used Aleene’s 7800 Adhesive which I purchased at a big chain hardware store. Choose a glue that will adhere to both wood and whatever your base is made of, in my instance it was metal. The glue needs to dry clear and it’s really helpful if it bonds quickly.
Masking Tape – any painter’s or masking tape will do – you just want to secure the driftwood pieces in place while the glue dries.
4. Start Gluing. Get an idea of what driftwood pieces you may want to use and how you want to place them around your base. Start gluing one by one.
5. Wrap with Masking Tape. When you’re finished gluing, carefully wrap with masking tape to hold you pieces until the glue dries. Overnight is good. In my case, I glued one round of pieces and let dry overnight. The next day, I decided to add more pieces.
6. Final Touches.
If you didn’t like the metal base or just wanted to add a little something more, here are a few ideas to personalize your driftwood lamp, but remember “less is more”. Simple driftwood lamps are quite beautiful with just the driftwood.
Sand – Use a white glue such as Elmer’s and brush it all over the base. Pour fine white sand onto the glue until the base is completely covered. You can build up the sand by layering, letting dry and then coat again with glue and sand until you’ve build up several layers.
Sea Glass – Glue sea glass pieces onto the base with a clear drying glue.
Shells – Dig out that shell collection you’ve had for years and start adhering shells with clear drying glue. Keep it simple and don’t go overboard.
Moss – Find a moss that you like and glue the moss in between the driftwood pieces all around the base. This adds more of a “woodland” look rather than seashore but still has a nice natural look to it.
Now that your lamp is finished, you need to find a lamp shade. I’m on the hunt for the perfect white shade for my new lamp as I think it will look better than this patterned lamp shade.
For more driftwood lamp styles check out create a driftwood lamp and simple candleholders using driftwood. It only takes a little imagination to put some eclectic lighting into your living space. You’ll save hundreds of dollars on what it would cost for a similar driftwood lamp and you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you can create a driftwood lamp yourself.