We use advertising and affiliate links from Amazon and other retailers as a means of generating revenue on this website. We do not recommend services or products we do not personally resonate with.
Friday, March 12, 2021

How to give an outdated brass sconce a make over

Searching for ideas to make over an outdated sconce you've had laying around the house?  Do not throw it away, give it a make over!

You know how I enjoy giving items makeovers, right?  I have a new one for you.  I am full of ideas, but do all of the ideas amount to grade A+ projects?  I will let you be the judge of this one.  

A lot of times I get my inspiration from the past.  I found a chandelier many years ago on Pinterest and I was in love immediately!  It was dripping in pearls and I was smitten!  It continued to stay in the back of my mind over the years... and I thought I can do that or at least something similar to it!  

I nearly had Mr. Vintage convinced he should let me do this to our chandelier in the dining room, but then came concerns of the weight and was the existing chandelier reinforced?  Who knows when you are talking about an older home and I decided I did not want to find out when it came crashing down on my dining room table!  I will always take the path that avoids a major mishap that will be costly to repair because I am frugal.  I love high end looks, but not the cost of said high end projects.  So I find ways to get the look I want on a very frugal budget.    

While thrift store shopping one day long ago, I found a three candle brass sconce for $2.00.  I thought to myself, I can do something with this, although I wasn't sure what, but I knew I wanted to try something different.  When I was scavenging around in our basement searching for my next project I found it and decided I knew what I wanted to try with it! 

It seemed to me to be the perfect pearl makeover piece!  I painted it white with my gesso paint, not perfect, because what do I always say?  Perfectly imperfect!  Things that are just too perfect never catch my attention.  After I painted it, it sat for a few weeks.  The pearls I had on hand were just too large to cover this small sconce.    

Online shopping I went, you do not need to twist my arm too hard to search for something online... I am always ready and willing to see what I can find.  I found the perfect string of pearls, 99 feet of them to be exact at a great price too!  I did use a lot of pearls on this piece, but I have a ton left over so I will be thinking about my next pearl project soon.  

I must have been extra excited about this project because I missed taking a photo of painting the darn thing!  Sorry about that!  I painted it with my trusty white gesso paint.

I used my small hot glue gun (I could probably hot glue a house together, I have become an expert in gluing items over the years) to attach the pearls to the sconce.  Are you loving my work area?  Yep, dining room with cardboard thrown over the table, I need a work area for my crafting... do you think you can give Mr. Vintage a shout out, I really need that crafting she shed?  Lol...  

I kept gluing the pearls, never breaking the string and continuing to go around the sconce.  

Kind of monotonous, huh?  Yep, still gluing, do, do, do, do, do, do, do, do... (humming the Jeopardy song to myself).

And this keeps going... you get the idea... until I cover the entire back plate.  

Ok, so here we have it finished around the back plate of the wall sconce. If you have been following for any length of time, you realize I am thinking to myself, now what?  There were some really tight spaces, I was glad I had a small glue gun to reach in those small areas.

Here I begin to glue the pearls to the candle holders and keep going until the entire holder is covered in pearls.  

I continued to do this to all three candle holders.  I took a step back and Mr. Vintage said you are finished and I said, of course not silly... I need to cover the entire thing with pearls!  It has to be a fancy pants project and pearls galore would make it just that!  

And so here is where I make a mistake because guess what? I cannot really wrap the pearls around the arms as I had anticipated.  I began doing this... it did not work out, I was not able to get the pearls continuously around the arms, too tight of a fit....  so I had to rip that section out, practice makes perfect...  

So Mr. Vintage had this ingenious idea of adding the pearls to the front and back of the arms instead of wrapping them around.  I tell ya, I'd be lost without that guy!  I come up with these ideas and he actually is the one who makes sure they come to fruition.  He always figures out a way!  Mr. Vintage to the rescue again!  

I like it, it is kind of fancy pants, kind of cottage, kind of really different... the balls at the ends of the arms still show, they are not covered in pearls, but it does not look strange (in my opinion).  I think it is the perfect mix.  

What do you think?  A bit much?  Well, of course I had to take it up a notch and completely cover the whole thing in pearls.  I do enjoy my projects, they keep me sane through the week.  I also do not think I will put candles in it.  That would be expected, and I would never want to do what one would think I should... 😉 

Can you tell our ceilings are low, only eight feet high and then the chandelier hanging down doesn't always allow me to get a good photo from across the room. 

I have loved pearls since I was young, there is just something about a string of pearls... my sis brought back pearls for me from one of her adventures...  she is the avid traveler, and I am the ever lovin' homebody.  I love being at home and making our house the home we never want to leave.  It brings me a lot of joy and happiness being able to continuously come up with new projects to work on around here.  

I decided to add the Christmas ornaments you will find all throughout our home.  I also added a French bee for a little silly thrown into the mix.  

I have different variations of this ornament and added a larger ornament to the sconce...

And then I decided to go back to the original ornament sizes I had originally.  I am always switching things up until I get it just the way I want...

Do not be afraid to try new things, just give it a try, you can do it!  You may be surprised with what you can achieve and it just might make you grin from ear to ear every time you look at it too!  

Isn't it funny how light can play in a room, from this photo, one would think the ornaments are lit up.  They are not, but I am across from the dining room table taking this picture.  

If you enjoyed this project, subscribe to our blog and receive our project updates when we post.  You will receive an email to confirm your email address, and then the magic begins... you will never miss a post!  

Interested in other projects we have worked on around the cottage?  Click to read about our 

$15 backsplash make over

Kitchen updates one step at a time

How to easily update your décor for free

Another Spring table idea

How to use unique home décor items


Affiliate links included in this post

Would you like to comment?

  1. I liked it when you had just painted it white and it was sort of vintage-looking. Sorry, too gaudy for me with the pearls. But I totally agree that crafting keeps us sane!

    1. Thanks Beth for your comment. I love crafting and coming up with different ideas...

  2. I looooove this! You were spot on, making a plain sconce look elegant! I am a French Country decorating lover & this was perfect!

    1. Thank you so much! I am love with French country as well... I tried to find the inspiration photo from Pinterest, but it must no longer be posted, but it has been in the back of my mind for years... I finally had the piece I wanted to try this on.

  3. Dollar Store 'White Pearl' nail polish will make the balls on the shoulders pearly.

    1. I love this idea! Thank you for the suggestion! I will have to run out and find that ASAP!