OK, I admit it. I am a hoarder of lights. Old lamps, ceiling fixtures, chandeliers—they all lend themselves beautifully to reinvention, and I simply can’t resist their promises. In this case, a $1.99 thrift-store lamp said, “Bird bath, bird bath, bird bath!” until, after a few paces, I succumbed and handed over my two bucks. This DIY bird bath was truly a fast and easy project. One lamp, a few hours, spray paint and some epoxy just about did it. So keep your eyes peeled and your ears open at those Saturday morning yard sales. You never know when a lamp will speak to you, giving you a chance to create your own recycled bird bath!
- Old lamp
- Painter’s tape
- Spray primer and paint
- Wide, shallow bowl for bath
- Clear epoxy
- Ceiling light canopy (optional)
Remove the socket and lamp shade support from the lamp and cut the cord at both ends to make it easy to pull through the lamp housing.
I added a ceiling light canopy to the top of my lamp to offer more support to the bowl. This was simple to do, since a ceiling canopy already has a hole in the center, and the lamp has a screw and nut, making attachment super easy. You may need to add a washer if the nut on the lamp is smaller than the canopy hole.
It’s much easier to paint the lamp before adding the bowl. Make sure to wash the lamp down for a dust-free surface, and let dry thoroughly. I used painter’s tape to protect the base of the lamp. Several light coats of spray paint within a few minutes of each other provide a quick transformation.
When the paint is thoroughly dry, usually within an hour or two, you can glue the bowl onto the circular canopy edge. I used a clear epoxy out of the tube all around the bowl. Epoxy takes a while to set up but is extremely strong.
Make sure to mark or eyeball the center of the bowl before gluing it to the canopy. An off-center bowl will fall over when you fill it with water. Set the birdbath aside long enough for the epoxy to cure.
Scout the perfect spot, place the birdbath, fill it up with water and enjoy your handiwork!