There has been a definite trend toward living in smaller homes in recent years. Retirees are downsizing, millennials are buying starter homes, city dwellers continue to live in apartments and college students deal with the ultimate small space living: dorm rooms. Whatever your reason, taking advantage of every square inch is important.
Furniture that can do double duty will save you a lot of space. A storage ottoman, for instance, is a classic example. Turning an end table into a floor lamp will also save precious real estate. You not only get two accessories in one, you get to create a unique, one-of-a-kind piece of furniture that really reflects your personality.
Poking around a resale shop, I found a vintage glass candlestick style lamp with three sections. I was looking for one with a long center rod and a removable base. If your cabinet or table is on the taller side, go with a traditional floor lamp for the best result.
Any small table or cabinet will work, but one made of wood is easier to drill holes into and paint. This little dresser with drawers had seen better days, but it was solid and in good condition.
The first step is to remove the handles and sand the old paint finish. You want a nice clean, smooth surface when painting. Since I was going for an industrial look, I purchased black paint in a high gloss.
But before painting the dresser, I attached wheels to the bottom. This is a designer trick worth remembering, especially in small spaces. Having the ability to easily move furniture around is invaluable.
An industrial-style lamp table called for something other than the usual drawer pulls. I browsed the hardware section of the home improvement store and ended up with bolts, nuts and washers.
I love coming up with something new, unique and unexpected. These knobs are certainly original. The holes were already drilled in the drawer fronts, so I bought bolts to fit.
To attach the lamp to the dresser, you need to drill two holes: one in the top and one in the back (for the cord). Measure the bottom width of the lampshade and divide by two. My shade is 9 inches wide, so the top hole is centered 4 ½ in. from the back. The diameter of the hole is the same size as the rod in the lamp. I removed the lamp base, inserted the rod in the hole and held it in place with the same nut that was originally used on the lamp.
The lamp will stay in place and can’t be knocked over even when you move the table. The best part is you can swap out the lampshade any time you feel like redecorating. Shade styles and colors can add a ton of personality to a room without breaking the bank.
Merri Cvetan from MEC Design Studio, a Wisconsin interior design firm, uses her interior design skills to create imaginative furniture pieces. Merri’s lamp redo for the end table/lamp combo is a great example. Merri writes about her creations online for The Home Depot, where you can find a large selection of lampshades and lamps.