Friday, May 18, 2012

Ombre Lamp Tutorial

While helping my sister with her downsizing project I brought home two Ginger Jar lamps.  They were in great condition but I thought they needed a little dressing up.

I have also been wanting to try the Martha Stewart Paint Spray System for a while now.  So I bought the kit and a few containers of Satin Acrylic Paint and got to work.  I had my heart set on an Ombre finish, which I had not tried before.


Two Ginger Jar lamps with shades
Martha Stewart Paint Spray System
MS craft satin paints: Summer Linen, Artichoke, Pesto
Rice paper
Ball fringe
Glue gun

I started by taping off the fixtures and cords, gave the lamps a light sanding, and washed them thoroughly with alcohol. I then mixed my colors with equal parts of the Satin Medium from the paint kit.

It's barely visible in this photo but I sprayed the first coat (Summer Linen) at the top of the lamps.
I sprayed the second color (Artichoke) starting at the top of the largest part of the lamps and down to the bottom.  Then I added some of the Pesto to the leftover Artichoke mix and sprayed the last layer from the middle of lamps and continued down to the bottom.  I gave that last color a second coat after the first coat dried.

The Ombre color shift is very subtle, but gorgeous!

Next I attacked the shades. They were also in good shape but I didn't quite know what I wanted to do.  I have a couple of my own shades that are covered with handmade paper and I liked the effect. So I tore rice paper I had into uneven pieces and used spray glue to cover over the paper shades, overlapping as I went along.

I used the straight edge of the paper at the tops and bottoms, leaving enough extra to fold over and glue to the inside of the shades.

Almost finished.

The final step was to attach a matching green ball fringe to the lamps with a glue gun.

And here's the finished product.

All in all, I like the Martha Stewart Paint System.  Being able to use almost any color as a spray paint is a real plus.  The downside is that the system is useful for small projects only.  I ended up using about one and a half spray containers, but I admit I had some starts and stops and wasted some of the aerosol spray while I was getting used to the product.  I also wiped off the first layer I tried and started over again because I sprayed too heavily and ended up with drips. Without all those "oops" I probably could have completed the project with only one spray canister.  But a much larger project could turn out to be very expensive.

Have you tried Martha's paint kit yet? What did you think? 


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  1. These look great! I've never heard of Martha's Spray Kit before. I'd love for you to share this tutorial on my new link party:

    - thanks
    Sarah @

  2. I actually have a spray paint thingy but I've never used it. Your lamps look fabulous. Such a subtle change, and I am not even a fan of green. But I love how they turned out!
    great job!


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