Click HERE to see the updated room with the finished chandeliers hanging in all their glory. :)
One of the greatest things about being broke all the time (or just being cheap all the time) is that it forces you to think outside the box and use your imagination. Sometimes my imagination is hard to keep up with and definitely is hard to understand so obviously when I came home with a stack of plastic placemats, wire, and a spatter guard cover and told my husband that it was going to be our new bedside lighting, he was less than enthusiastic. You’d think he’d have it figured out by now that I always have a plan and that my plans WORK…usually…sometimes…the second or third time around. Actually I’m pleased to say that this plan didn’t have too many hiccups and I’m pretty pleased with the results. If you’d like to see more pics of my bedroom (one chandelier is up, the other I’m determined to finish soon, and by the way, they won’t be hanging off of the flimsy wire from the ceiling like in the pics either. I’m working on a plan to have them coming out from the wall…ideas?
You like? You want? You CAN! Lets do this!
Cost: About $15
- A spatter guard cover. I got mine from the Dollar Store. You could also improvise with anything else that is round…an embroidery hoop…a plant basket…keep your eyes open and get creative.
- Craft wire or pre-made jump rings. I got craft wire at Walmart for about $3 and made my own jump rings. If you’d like to know how to make your own jumprings go here.
- Fishing line or clear thread.
- Plastic placemats. I got mine on clearance at Target for $1.35 each.
- Crimp beads. You can buy a bag of them at Walmart or your local craft store for less than $2.
- Kitchen shears or other heavy duty cutting tool.
- A hanging light kit. Ikea has them for around $4. Pier1 has them for $10. You can also check your hardware store.
- A small hole punch. I used an eyelet hole puncher.
- Small pliers.
This project takes some time so get comfy, turn on HGTV, and start cutting.
1. Cut out your chandelier pieces from the plastic placemats. I used 4 white/frosted placemats for my chandelier and a little bit of 1 black placemat for the top. My placemats already had a square pattern on them so I simply cut them out in squares along the lines. You can do any shape you’d like, although, squares are very easy to cut with kitchen shears and easy to maintain about the same size and shape.
2. Lay your squares out and decide how big, long, full, and tapered you’d like your chandelier to be. I set my spatter guard down on the floor and laid the squares out side by side along it to see how many squares around and then decided how many squares down I’d like it to hang. I made my chandelier 3 tiered so I also decided how many squares long I’d like to have my inside ring of squares to be and the middle ring of squares as well. You might need to buy extra placemats just in case you decided to add some depending on how large your chandelier “frame” is. Just for reference, my outside shortest tier was 4 squares long (the squares are about 1.5″ square), the middle medium length tier was 7 squares long (allowing 3 squares to hang below the outside tier), and my inner longest tier was 4 squares long, hung off of fishing line so that the first squares in the strands were behind the bottom square of the strand above it so that only 3 squares are hanging below the middle medium tier. Wow…this is really not as complicated AT ALL as I just made it sound.
3. Once you have a layout in mind, start hole punching. I used an eyelet hole punch to punch holes to allow me to thread my squares onto jumprings and attach them to eachother. Keep in mind that you will have a bottom square on every strand that will only need a hole at the top NOT THE BOTTOM since that last square on each strand will be hanging free.
4. Next, make your jump rings (see how here) with your wire, or, if you bought pre-made jump rings, start attaching your squares to eachother to form strands. *TIP* When using jump rings, don’t pull them apart, twist them to seperate the ends and to bring the ends back together again. If you just try to pull them apart you’ll have a gap when you go to pinch the ends back together again.
5. Are you done with all your strands? Now you can start assembling your chandelier. If you’re using a spatter guard it might have a handle in the middle of it like mine did. I just took it off with a screwdriver and widened the hole it left in the middle of the screen with my kitchen shears to allow for the light kit to hang through.
6. To assemble your chandelier start from the inner tier and work your way out. This is easier than working form the outside in. Trust me. As you can tell by my pics, I didn’t do this and got tangled up in my outside strands while I was trying to attach my inside strands. For my longest tier I didn’t want to make extra long strands of placemat squares so I simply made strands of 4 squares and then looped fishing line through the hole at the top square on each strand and secured it with a crimp bead. *TIP* The crimp bead will go on the fishing line first, then the fishing line through the hole in your square, then the end of the fishing line (that just went through the hole) back up through the crimp bead again. Then, I made the fishing line as long as I wanted to let the last tier hang and looped free end through the screen on my spatter guard and fastened it with another crimp bead. Basically, just hang your longest tier off of fishing line because you won’t see most of it through the other tiers, and you can make it as long as you’d like and save the trouble of making super long strands of squares. Does that make sense? It did in my head.
7. Then, working your way out a few inches toward the edge of the spatter guard, attach your next tier of strands. This tier I attached directly to the spatter screen with jumprings.
8. Now attach your final tier to the outer edge of the spatter guard using jumprings. (The pic below is backwards because I didn’t start in the middle like I should’ve so it only has the outer tier there. But don’t do it like this, START FROM THE MIDDLE and work your way out.)
9. Voila. You’re awesome. Now, stick your light kit through the center and hang it in your room. Your friends and family will never believe that you made it from plastic placemats!