DIY GEOMETRIC PENDANT LIGHT
(images via. Pinterest)
The above pictures were my main inspiration, I just wanted something that merged both together. Then I found this $10 Light Fixture post by Style Me Pretty and it was exactly like what I wanted to make! Here's a breakdown of what the cost would really be (if you don't have any materials on hand):
Straws - $1.25
Gold spray paint - $6.99
String - $2.00
Wire - $2.00
Pendant light - $9.99
TOTAL = $22.23 CA (+ tax)
So not quite $10, but still cheaper than buying a nice geo pendant light. I bought the straws and string from Dollarama, I used this plug in cord set from IKEA, and I already had wire.
I tried to follow the Style Me Pretty tutorial but one of the pictures wasn't loading (not sure if it would have made a difference or not), and I had a bit of trouble understanding what how they started off the fixture. I decided to just look at her picture and figure it out for myself (WING IT). I also didn't think to take picture of my process until half way through so I've tried my best to explain what worked.
I strung three straws together and made triangles (as seen in the picture) for the spray paint. This stopped them from rolling around too much when trying to paint them, and made it easier for me to twist them around and get an even coat. Some of the triangles that I painted in the beginning have strips where I didn't twist them all the way, but I just hid them at the back so I didn't have to repaint. I didn't tie the tops of these triangles because I just wanted the individual straws (but I did tie one together to start).
I hung the cord of the light over the curtain rod in my living room so I could work on it while it was hanging and this way I could see what it would look like hanging. I cut a piece of wire and wrapped half of it around the cord couple inches up from the end. I made one individual triangle with the painted straws and tied the ends off around the wire on the cord. Then I added on more straws to make a pyramid (4 sides) and tied and loose strings to the top. I wrapped the remaining wire around the string to secure it. Does that make sense?
Keep adding straws to build off the original pyramid. Depending on what kind of shape you want you can build down, build out, or both! I built down and tried building out but I didn't like the way it looked so I cut that part off.
STRINGING IT TOGETHER - this was where I had to play around to see what worked best. Each triangle should have its own string to tie it together. As for getting the string through... it's a straw! Use it! Each straw had at least 2 lines of string running through it - some had 3. DO NOT cut the strings until everything is laced through! I mean you can if you want, but it's wayyy easier to track how the strings are connected and where they're tied if you leave the ends hanging down (see picture below).
Once you are happy with the shape you can cut the ends off! I pulled the strings tight so the straws wouldn't sag, triple knotted, and then cut the ends as close to the knot as I could. I twisted the string by pulling on it at one of the other ends of the triangles so the knot would be hidden in the straw. Do this for every string! Then I went around to every point and checked to make sure all the straws were connected somehow (ie. I wanted every straw to be connected to the one next to it). I had to lace a few more lines of string through but this made a difference in how secure the shape was and eliminated droopiness.
(Light bulb was just for my reference... I need to buy one of the really nice exposed ones!)
Another thing you could do here is spray paint the points where the straws meet and if there is exposed string. This just helps the string blend in a little more.
As seen in the first picture, here is the final result. I have it hanging over my desk and I LOVE that this is a plug in light because I'm indecisive when it comes to decorations so I'll probably be moving it around a lot. Because of this, I was a little weary about screwing a hook into the ceiling. I went out and bought the Command strip that can swivel around and hung it up using that. Unfortunately it did fall down over night so I'm going to have to think up some more solutions before I resort to the hook. All in all I'm really happy with how it turned out. I think it took 2 hours (more or less), but if I were to do it again it wouldn't take as long because I'd know what I'm doing.
The only thing I would change if I were to make another one would be to use paper straws. I actually had a bunch kicking around, but I bought plastic ones because that's what it seemed like everyone online was using. I accidentally bent one of the straws and the gold spray paint did peel up a bit, but with paper straws I think it would hold a little better.