Bright Ideas for Updating Your Light Fixtures


by Tip Hero David Glenn
Aging light fixtures can make even the most modern home look outdated. While home warranty companies cover the costs of repairing or replacing home appliances, light fixtures are not covered under these plans. Updating the look of a room using creative lighting solutions provides an affordable way to create immediate change in the overall appearance of a room without spending a lot of money. Options for updating old lighting include redesigning the old ones, creating your own using recycled materials, and buying new ones. Buying new ones is often the least cost-effective method, although there are ways to find lighting solutions that aren’t budget busters. The following ideas will provide inspiration for updating your old light fixtures without breaking the bank.

Redesign old fixtures

One way to create your own inexpensive lighting solution is to redesign your old fixtures. Redesigning is a great option if your old ones look outdated because of their color or texture. If an old fixture just needs a coat of paint to make it look brand new or a new drum shade to add some style, a redesign can cost less than $20. The options for redesigning an old fixture are almost limitless if you like the overall design of your current one. Pops of color, texture, or pattern can make an old light look new.

Use spray paint to change colors and textures

Brass light fixtures are great candidates for a redesign project. This shiny metal can tarnish, turning an otherwise beautiful light into an absolute eyesore. Because textured spray paint can make smooth surfaces more visually interesting, some people create the illusion of wrought iron or other metals by resurfacing smooth finishes. Choosing classic colors like black or white can give these old fixtures a timeless look, while trendier colors can make them look brand new. Cover the insides of the light fixture with electrical tape before painting to ensure that no paint gets inside the light socket, and use paint that is designed to withstand high temperatures.

Use fabric to recover old drum shades

Old drum pendant shades also make easy projects for home lighting updates. Pendant shades are readily available to purchase as replacements. Big box stores usually keep them in stock, but be sure to take accurate measurements of your old shade to ensure a proper fit. Old pendants that are covered in fabric are easy to update with new fabric. This project is as simple as choosing new fabric, cutting it to size, and using a spray adhesive to cover the old fabric. This is a great solution for fabric-covered pendants that are showing wear or have stains on them.

Recycle materials to create unique lighting solutions

Recycled materials can be transformed into unique lighting that is also good for the environment. Upcycling to create your own custom lighting is an excellent way to repurpose old things and transform them into trendy, modern fixtures. Mason jars and burlap are excellent materials to use in do-it-yourself lighting projects. Pendant lights without shades are very inexpensive to purchase, and most people already have old mason jars stored away in a cabinet. Cutting the glass requires a few tools that many people already own, but even with the cost of a cheap glass-cutting tool, this project is very inexpensive.

Replace light fixtures without spending a lot of money

Old light fixtures can also be replaced completely without spending several hundred dollars. Replacing your old fixtures is often the best option for people who just don’t like their current light fixtures. It is the only option when the old one is broken beyond repair. While it’s possible to spend thousands of dollars on a single chandelier, this is not a good option for people on a budget.

Find great pieces that are gently used

Great designer pieces sometimes end up in thrift stores and antique stores where they can be purchased for a fraction of the original cost. Estate sales are also good places to check. Online classifieds also frequently have beautiful light fixtures for sale at extremely low prices.

Look for handcrafted pieces

Craft fairs are good candidates for finding designer lighting that costs less than retail prices. Local artisans are often willing to sell their work at discounted prices. Since these events allow you to speak directly with the artisan, you may even be able to special order a custom piece that is within your budget. Most artisans are on a tight budget themselves, and they are often more than happy to take custom orders to fit any price range.

Updating old light fixtures does not have to be an expensive project. Whether you decide to redesign, recycle, or replace your old ones, creative lighting solutions can be an affordable way to make any room look drastically different. With so many options, this home improvement project is easy to fit into any budget.