DIY Modern Industrial Light : under $20


Several years ago I scored a small mint green accent light for five bucks.  I liked that it was vintage, metal and thought it had real potential.  Only recently however, did I find a spot for it -and even then it felt too ‘pretty’ for the space.  I wanted a more tough, industrial look.


I got my inspiration when I spotted a new line of ‘Edison’ style light bulbs at the hardware store from a company called Globe Electric (who operate right here in Montreal).  These kinds of light bulbs have been gaining in popularity but up until recently were hard to find unless you ordered them online and even then you needed a light fixture that would be all about the bulb (you don’t want to cover up these beauties with a lampshade).

Before vintage light
I thought my old little vintage light would be perfect for the ‘squirrel cage’ style bulb I chose, the only problem was that the existing socket was for a candelabra style bulb not the thicker (what you normally put in your table lamp) ‘S’ type light bulb.  However, for about $3 I knew I could fix this little problem.  I headed to the next aisle over (miscellaneous electrical and lighting parts) to find a new socket.

tools what you need / updating vintage light to industrial light


  1. Back home I (obviously unplugged the light from the wall!) removed the old socket, opened the package with the new socket and carefully read the instructions.  Using wire cutters, wire strippers and a flat head screw driver I was able to install it in under 5 minutes without an issue (honest, it was very easy – just be sure to triple check your instructions and wire connections to be extra safe).
  2. Then I gave the whole thing a couple of coats of mate black spray paint which I already had left over from another project (I stuffed the inside of the socket with newspaper to prevent any paint from going inside).
  3. Once the paint was cured I removed the bit of newspaper from the socket and screwed in my new light bulb and plugged it in.  I liked it, but felt it was missing something:  it needed a glass shade.  The shade that came with it had some texture and was not perfectly clear  (I wanted to see the detail of the light bulb) plus it was too cute for the industrial look I was after.  I rummaged through cupboards and found a simple glass food storage container, slipped it over top and was pleasantly surprised at how good it looked.  Done!



$5 for the vintage metal light fixture + $3 for the new socket + $9 for the fancy light bulb + $0 for spray paint and glass storage container =  an industrial light for under $20.

industrial light DIY

DIY industrial light fixture / modern table lamp

industrial light fixture, art, shelf

edison light bulb squirrel cage light

What do you think?  Is this something you might tackle?  Feel free to share your comments below.

Thanks for checking in,


you might also like…



2 thoughts on “DIY Modern Industrial Light : under $20

    • Oh my!! Lol! Yes, it can be kind of scary… I usually can’t help but flinch a little when I turn on a light that I hv just worked on. Knock on wood though I hv been lucky so far! :)

Leave a comment; I love feedback!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s