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Colourful Spray Painted Upcycled floor lamp

How to upcycle an old floor lamp with spray paints into a colourful statement piece.

I love a rainbow and I wanted a bright colourful rainbow lamp for my home. Using spray paints was an easy way to update an old lampshade without having to do any sewing or decoupage.

This project was so easy and didn’t require any specialist skills; as long as you can shake a can of spray paint you can revamp a lamp. It is really quick too.

I picked up this floor lamp really cheaply from my local auction house. I wasn’t sure if it worked, that didn’t matter as this was a rather old lamp I changed the electrics anyway, just to be on the safe side.

Updating the electricity on an old lamp is pretty straightforward. All the stuff you need to do this electrical update can be bought from your local DIY store or online. It is as easy as changing a plug.

You may be lucky and pick up a floor lamp that has had its electrics updated recently.

old floor lamp

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What You Need For A Spray Painted Upcycled floor lamp

  • Old floor lamp – If you don’t have one they can often be easily found at junk shops, thrift stores and garage sales.
  • Selection of colourful spray paints. I used a copper spray paint for the base of my lamp and the inside of the shade. The lamp shade was in 8 sections so I decided to paint each section a different colour to obtain a rainbow effect.
  • Newspaper and masking tape
  • Yarn in rainbow colours for making a pompom trim.
rainbow yarn
old lampshade

How To Upcycle A Floor Lamp

1.. Take the lamp apart to upcycle it. This will involve removing the lampshade. Then unscrewing the stand from the wooden base. And removing the fringe trim.

2. First, spray paint both the wooden stand and the base of the lamp in copper. Mask off a central bit of the lamp with tape and spray paint rainbow stripes to match the upcycled lampshade.


3. Next, to help with even the colour shine, I spray painted the inside of the lampshade with two coats of copper paint.

lampshade before
spray painted inside of shade

4. As soon as the paint on the inside of the lampshade had dried, I covered it with masking tape and newspaper. This was to protect the paint when spraying the outside.

Covering the inside of lampshade with newspaper

5. The lampshade was divided into eight distinct sections, which gave me the idea of painting a rainbow. I spray painted each section of the lampshade in a different colour of the rainbow. I made sure that the bits not being sprayed with a particular colour were well covered up with newspaper and masking tape.

Top tip: If you are not into rainbows, you can paint the lampshade all one colour or two stripes.

spray painting lampshade
upcycling lamp with spray paint

Triming the lamp

6. Next, I divided the fringe trim I had removed from the lampshade into eight equal sections. I then spray painted each of the sections the same colours as the upcycled lamp in the same order on the shade.

7. Then I with the rainbow yarn I made 2 coloured pom-poms for each section of the spray-painted lampshade to match the colours. So that was 16 pom-poms in total. I have an easy tutorial for making pom-poms here.

PomPoms for lampshade trim

8. Next, reattach the fringe trim and pom-poms to the spray-painted lampshade using a hot glue gun.

Upcycled floor lamp with spray paints

Finshing The Upcycled Floor Lamp

9. To finish off, rewire the floor lamp with a kit if the original wiring is very old and potentially dangerous. Just follow the instructions that come with the kit, it is just like changing a plug. Then put the floor lamp stand back into the base and add the decorated lampshade.

Upcycled floor lamp with spray paints -

Before I started this project I had no idea how my upcycled floor lamp would turn out. I had never spray painted fabric like this before but felt I had to try it as it was the only way I was going to achieve the bright rainbow effect.

As you can see it worked out really well, I love my new floor lamp and the pop of colour it now brings to the room.

There are many other ways to upcycle floor lamps besides using paints. I have upcycled a similar lamp with denim and maps which is probably one of my favourite pieces of furniture in my house.

A really easy way to upcycle lamps to match your decor is to make wallpaper lamps.

DIY upcycled floor lamp

To compliment the lamp I have also made a gorgeous rainbow DIY pom-pom flower decoration. You might want to check out my other ideas for rainbow home decor or these upcycled map lighting ideas.

For more floor lamp makeovers, check out these IKEA upcycled lamps and this amazing giant fish IKEA floor lamp hack.

Ingrid Parker

Saturday 4th of August 2018

Your revamped lampshades (both spray painted and wallpapered) look amazing. My question - does this not make the light too dim?

Claire Armstrong

Sunday 5th of August 2018

Thank you. I still have a ceiling light the lamps provide ambient lighting.

Sandra K. Salisbury

Thursday 7th of April 2016

Claire, your beautiful lamp revamp came at the right time for me! I have a lamp shade that is a very odd shape and isn't in very good condition. I'll have to glue the fabric to the frame at the top and bottom before I can do anything else to it. I don't want to go with a different shade as this one "makes" the lamp. I too have wanted to paint the shade but my concern has been about the heat from the bulb being too intense for the paint on the shade. Have you experienced any problems with that? I'm not even sure yet what color the lamp itself will be!

Claire Armstrong

Thursday 7th of April 2016

Thank You ! I haven't had a problem with heat from the bulb. The heat doesn't radiate very far so the bulb is only hot if you touch it and the lampshade is a good few inches from the bulb so doesn't get hot.

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Tuesday 16th of February 2016

Your lamp upcycle is undeniably awesome! It looks so effective! Was it difficult to get an even coverage on the trim? Thanks to your post, I feel inspired to track down and old lamp and get upcycling, haha. Great project!

Claire Armstrong

Tuesday 16th of February 2016

Thank you ! No it only took a couple of coats to get it even.