DIY: Lacquer Lamp and Shade

Posted by darlingdarleenadmin on

lacquer lamp gold lacquer shade amy howard paints

DIY: Lacquer Lamp and Shade.  I have a little corner in my studio that has needed some TLC.  The black lamp that has been sitting on the side table (see the DIY for the side table) is the perfect size and a good modern shape, but needed a little makeover to brighten up a boring corner of the room.  White Lacquer and a touch of gold is a continual trend I am still gravitating toward.  With a little lacquer paint of white and gold, my black lamp has gone from “boring” to “oh yeah”!

Here is the BEFORE of my black lamp.  It’s cute and serves it’s purpose, but it’s definitely missing something.

Black lamp before DIY

A simple, quick solution is to spray paint it, but spray paint color is so mundane.  Lacquer is not!  I recently attended a painting workshop at Amy Howard Home Studios.  I gained so much information and inspiration; I can’t wait to share everything I’ve learned!  I have been wanting to use her lacquer paints, so this was a good beginning project.  Amy Howard Home lacquer paints are much different than the lacquer spray paints you might buy at Home Depot.  Her lacquer paints are a professional furniture grade lacquer using shellac, where as other brands use acrylic paint.  Acrylic lays on top of a piece, whereas lacquer fuses to the piece.  It is a deeper finish.  You can be purchased AHH lacquer paints at your local Ace Hardware or you click here to find a retailer near you.


Tape off your lamp.  Make sure to clean the base with a Simple Green degreaser to remove dust and grime.  Wipe.  Then wipe it down again with water to remove the cleaning solution remains.  You are now ready to lacquer.


I wanted to keep the base of the lamp white so I lacquered with “white perfection“.  Make sure to follow the directions of shaking the can well.  Spray a distance of 6-8” from the object in a left to right, top to bottom motion, overlapping each stroke.  Let it dry for 1 hour in between coats.


I sprayed on two coats of white lacquer on the base.  For extra high-gloss performance, spray “bright idea” , a clear lacquer finish, over a dried layer of white perfection.  The lacquer paint makes the lamp base look like a glass gourd.  So pretty!  The below picture is taken with one coat of paint.


I then decided to switch out the original lampshade.  It was a little too small for my liking, and I wanted something larger and more of a drum.  I bought a reasonably priced new shade.  I like this shade because the inside is plastic and the outside is a fabric.  After seeing this table lamp, I knew I wanted the drum’s inside to be gold metallic.  So, I taped the edge to avoid getting paint on the fabric front part of the shade.  I then lacquered the inside with the metallic “golden egg” lacquer paint.  It took about 2 coats of paint.  The picture below is with one coat of paint.


Once everything was dried, I put it back together, styled my little corner and it looks so much better !

lacquer-lamp-gold-shade2 lacquer-lampshade-gold1

The gold peeking out is the perfect amount.  And at night, it gives off a warm glow.


Simple and a new look to an old lamp!

lacquer lamp base gold lacquer shade diy amy howard paints before & after

Here are other lacquer lamp options with white and gold!

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