Office Bound Cork Board Lamp

June 6, 2013Allison Murray

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

I wouldn’t necessarily say that I have a thing for lamps. I have a thing for shoes and a thing for sunglasses and even a thing for rugs. But lamps aren’t normally on my radar.

Which makes it seem kind of odd that I felt the need to DIY two lamps within a pretty short time span. The lamps I’ve had in my living room are 8 years old and 12 years old. Because once I find a lamp I love, that’s kind of a wrap.

Cork Board Lamp TutorialBut for some reason this hideous monstrosity being sold for $2.99 at Goodwill caught  my eye. To be honest I kept saying to myself “Do NOT turn it into a lighthouse. Do NOT turn it into a lighthouse.” Can you see it? It looks like a freakin’ lighthouse, doesn’t it?

So it sat in the corner when I decided that it would be neat to make the bottom portion that sticks out a cork board. Because if there is one thing I always have it is notes upon notes upon notes and I would probably do well with an entire wall made of the stuff.

So I set upon my little adventure with the plans to cover it in cork and rope but decided mid-way that I disliked the rope idea. Which left me with an issue of little bunnies (which had a lot texure to them) that I had to sand away. Part of the way through sanding I decided I LOVED the look. So while I was sanding to be able to spray paint it all one color, I totally dig this crazy shabby look instead. Yes, my cork board lamp is pretty stinkin’ awesome.

For this project you will need:

I had some cork roll left from when I corked my scuffed living room tables some time ago. Some of it got used for my flip flops from scratch but I still had a good two foot by two foot piece left. Which was perfect!

Now if you’re going to spray paint your lamp you can do it first and maintain the natural cork color, or at the end to also paint the cork. If painting at the end, remember that cork boards can get kind of jacked up when the pins are pushed in and removed so eventually you will see the natural cork color through those holes.

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Take your cork and plan on using a wider piece than you think you’ll need if your lamp is angled, or fatter at the bottom than at the top. When you wrap it, it isn’t going to be a straight line, it’s going to go at a weird angle, so it will take more cork than what you might guess at first.

All that extra cork looks like a waste, doesn’t it? But in the end it is how I had to work it to get it to cover fully. You can play around with it before gluing down.

Spray a healthy amount of adhesive onto both the lamp itself and the cork. Wait a minute for it to start becoming tacky and then start rolling and spraying as necessary to continue coverage.

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

When you get to the back you’ll need to work it so that the two ends match up in a halfway decent looking seam. I had to go on the diaganol because of the cuts of my existing cork but I didn’t sweat it because it looks halfway decent.

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Trim as necessary with your knife taking care because cork this thin is kind of crumbly.

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Go around the edges and the seam on the back with hot glue to make sure it is well attached. I kind of used it like caulk.

Use at least two layers of cork. With two layers I can use traditional thumb tacks, like seen below, without hitting the lamp’s ceramic surface. Push pins, however, have a longer pin and they won’t work.

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Round the edges of your cork with your sanding block. I apparently did a bang up job on the top edge but completely forgot the bottom. See the difference… how the top is smooth and kind of rounded and the bottom is kind of janky?

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Next I hit my lamp with my mouse sander and that is when I decided that I fell in love with this random, odd finish. Russell however asked “when are you going to finish it”. What do you think? Do you love it like I love it or are you wondering when I’m going to finish it? :)

Cork Board Lamp Tutorial

Well that’s all she wrote for this Thursday. I hope you like my cork board lamp and I also hope to see you tomorrow for a classy Father’s Day present! Hoping you have a fantastic day!


Comments (4)

  • Shannon

    June 8, 2013 at 2:06 PM

    I love the shabby, industiral finish! And the little bunnies peeking thru are great! Wish I could find a lamp this awesome…

  • Allison Murray

    June 8, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    Thanks, Shannon! Keep your eyes peeled. You could very well find your own monstrosity to make over at the Goodwill!

  • Lisa

    June 12, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    That's such a good idea! That's got to be so useful.
    Poor bunnies though :( haha

  • Allison Murray

    June 12, 2013 at 10:49 PM

    Poor bunnies, my butt! They were tragic :)

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