Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Making Retro Figural Lamps

Some things aren't easy to find in miniature. I love the look of retro figural lamps and wanted a few in the bungalow for character and charm (it is possible for midcentury modern to look a little TOO clean).

Using Pepper's lamp tutorial as a starting point, I got to work. First order of business was to cut four identical bottle caps to the same size.

Next, I cut four matching pieces of aluminum tubing, drilled holes into four wooden discs (off-center to allow room for figures), glued the tubing into the holes, and added lamp harps from Falcon Miniatures (sold on Miniatures Marketplace). I also trimmed the lampshade spiders to fit the caps (wire cutters worked just fine - they're not too thick).

The lamp on the far right is being test fitted with an LED bulb in this picture.

On to shade coloring: I cut out pieces of parchment to cover the caps, tested a few colored pencils on a scrap of paper, and held my figures against the test paper to see how they looked. When I found two colors I liked, I drew a subtle, very 1950s looking starburst pattern on the parchment, sealed with clear sealer, and carefully glued it into place.

The figurines I used for these lamps are by V&R Miniatures. They're handmade (no molds!), highly detailed, and beautiful (and surprisingly inexpensive for the high quality).

Now I just need to install these in the house!


  1. You've done a fantastic job. Your lamps look excellent =0)

  2. Hello Anna,
    Terrific. they are just beautiful. you did a great job.
    Big hug,

  3. Awesome, I love the use of the lamp harps!

  4. Thank you all!

    (Pepper - wouldn't have known where to begin without your tutorial!)

  5. You did a wonderful job! Thanks for sharing. :-)

  6. These lamps are perfect for your bungalow. So much better than anything you could buy!

  7. I agree with what everyone else has said so well. Your lamps have Loads of character and personality and I am so impressed with what a fine job you did constructing them. They really ARE Perfect! :D