So, what do you think? Oh my gosh, we are so insanely in love with the after! See it hanging in all its gorgeous full dining room glory HERE in our previous post. Maybe if classic/traditional is your decor style, you're sitting there cringing at the thought of painting a chandelier. But modern and sleek is our aesthetic and we're pumped that we saved a bundle by using what we have and just giving it a makeover. My vote was originally for a bright yellow but Hubby and my Mom voted for black so it was 2-to-1, I lost. I totally trust their design judgement and absolutely love the outcome. Hubby is beside himself and super proud.
This gorgeous lighting element was actually already in the home when we purchased it so we were super fortunate to inherit such a beaut. Click HERE to see the chandelier in our original dining room too. And just to forewarn you, this is going to be an image heavy post but we want to make sure we give you every bit of information so you can also easily tackle this project without a hitch. So without further ado, let's get down to business and show you how we painted this chandelier.
*If you're new to our site, we highlight the important parts in bold and you can click any picture to enlarge the view.
First up, we took one of the crystals into Tipler's Lamp Shop right here in downtown Austin. We were positive that the chandelier was actually cut glass and NOT crystal but we wanted to ask a professional, just to be sure. We were thinking about painting it something like THIS (yeah, how about that price tag) for that great added black colored element.
Well, well...I'm glad I popped in there because Mr. Tipler himself took one look at my piece of shiny goodness and said, 'Czechoslovakian crystal!' He then handed it back to me and looked rather disgusted with the fact that I wanted to paint said chandelier. Note to self: always check to make sure you know what you're dealing with. We nearly spray painted over all the crystals!
While we pondered what our options were, we decided to scrape the popcorn off the ceiling. Another note to self: remove lighting element first before scraping popcorn. The only reason we kept it up is because we were scraping during the evening and need some sort of lighting. We had quite the messy and coated chandelier afterwards that we had to clean, clean, clean. Yep, that gets a big fat boo from us...take it down first!
We then removed a huge number of crystals from the original just to see exactly what we wanted our chandelier finished product to look like. It was a bit crystal heavy (yep, I can't believe I'm even typing that, Hubby would be rolling his eyes at the thought of me saying that something is too shiny and blinged out) so here's some of the ones that didn't make the cut and the bottom half did make the cut.
And here's our reference picture for what we wanted our finished product to look like. We looked at this image over and over again. If you're even pondering doing something like this, we highly suggest taking a reference photo. We were zooming in to see where this crystal went and that crystal went...I mean, our chandelier would've turned out something seriously ridiculous had I not taken this exact image. Truly, a design saver in this case!
Hubster safely (read: turned off the breaker) removed the light from the ceiling using very similar steps as we previously shared with you HERE with our breakfast nook pendant.
Ick! Once we removed it we started cleaning it and all of this grayish dusty stuff kept falling out of the top part of it. Upon closer inspection you can see what all that stuff actually was. Hubs said bees, I said flies. But seriously nasty, it was like a huge dead colony of flyers...one word: gross-ness! Just remember, you never know what you're gonna get till you remove a lighting fixture.
So this is where I highly count on Hubby's expertise and engineering mind in the painters tape department. He rigged this awesome hanging system in his man cave (yes, that sign in the bottom right picture states, just that) in order to prime the entire light. He did most of the taping work and we agreed on what areas we thought shouldn't be painted. I also want to point out that he stuffed small balls of painters tape into the candlesticks so as to not ruin the electric connection inside. Smart man...he's such a smart, smart man.
Yep, it's prime time! Spray on primers are a must for painting a metal surface.
Primed and ready to rock-n-roll! Doesn't it even look really pretty in white? That was another color option for us but Hubby deemed it too boring. Well, I never!
Next up, we had to remove every...single..tiny...annoying...fastener! Yeah, we should've actually done a count because I swear it was at a million, or wait, my fingers swear! You can see all the different crystals and fasteners are separated (DO THIS!) into different compartments. We wanted to keep everything organized so it would be so simple to put back together. We're really glad we did this step, it came in handy later on.
So this is totally how we like to spend a Friday night...removing fasteners from crystals. That's just how you roll when you have a DIY blog, right? Zola conked out on CC Hubby, her favorite spot in the world. PS - We can't wait to tackle the fireplace surround in the right pic!
Then we soaked the crystals overnight in mild detergent (per a google search on how to clean crystal) which was perfect because we already only use Seventh Generation. We went to bed with visions of shiny sugarplums crystals, dancing in our head!
Buh bye boring (hubby's words, not mine) white and hello sleek and chic black!
Once again I have to brag on the Hubster. I kept prodding him about how he planned on priming/painting all those little fasteners and he kept saying, 'Don't worry about it! I'll think of something genius!' When he called me out to the man cave and showed me these tiny things strung all the way across the room, can you see it above. I was singing his smarty pants praises. Indeed, a genius way to make sure they get optimal and total primer/spray paint coverage! Obviously, they were then painted black but I didn't get a photo of that, sorry.
I stood in anticipation as all the tape was removed and couldn't wait for that grand tah-dah moment...but it never came. I hated this version. And yes I'm aware that hate is a super strong word. I just stared at Hubby and he was all like, 'What? Whaaaat?' Then I just said, 'Paint it all, I'm serious...paint it all!' Just imagine the time it took for him to use all the painters tape on all that glass, yeah...we didn't have a happy Hubby.
But I assured him that painting the total piece would be striking and rich looking. I drug him back into the house and showed him THIS picture again just to reassure him. He was actually more annoyed with the fact that his idea didn't look great and that we had to resort to another option. He headed back outside armed with the second can of gloss black spray paint.
Now we have our fun and awesome Saturday night! Reclasping all those fresh and shiny crystals to their newly painted gloss black clasps. Per our usually insanely organized selves, we made sure to separate everything out and well, in the bottom image, you can see that my fingers ended up being raw by the end of the night. This painting a chandelier stuff is not for the weary.
We were like kids in a candy store when we woke up the next morning and saw the shiny, glossy after. Seriously pumped, Hubby couldn't wait to get it hung up.
Here's a great hint, use a black sharpie to color in any spots you miss with the spray paint. No really, even if you're a super amazing spray painter, you will still miss tiny areas on the chain...we promise!
Here we are, anticipatingly re-hanging the crystals and crystal strands as fast as we can so we can obtain that big tah-dah moment. Seriously, we were like worker bees, buzzing all over that thing!
Yep, you bet your bottom dollar we were ooohing, ahhhing and tah-dahing all over the place! Doesn't it look grand? And chic? And eye catching? And drool worthy? Ok, sorry, we got a little bit carried away but we're bonkers excited about the after! It's everything we imagined and so much more. I actually got home from work today and raced past the dining room and thought, 'Where am I? Is that really our room?' Seriously, bonkers!
Lastly, for all the die hard macro fans out there...here's some super close shots of the details for you to feast your eyes on.
We can't suggest this project enough for those of you that have a blah chandy sittin' pretty or just hanging out in your casa. We are so pickled pretty and pleased to death with the result. If you do give this DIY project a try, email us the pics via CasaCullen@Gmail.com as we'd love to share your creative creation with our readers too!
Cost Breakdown for DIY Painted Chandelier:
Painters tape - already owned
Spray metal primer - already owned
High gloss metal spray praint - $3.96/can...we purchased two
Mild dish soap to clean crystals - already owned
Sharpie/paint brush for missed areas - already owned
Mega man power - you bettah believe it!
Grand TOTAL = $7.92 (plus tax)
So that's all we got for you today, people. Almost 1,700 words on chandy re-painting fun. Feel free to email us with any questions pertaining to this post and be sure to check out more of our DIY projects HERE!
Or we can eliminate the leg work for you and link to some of our faves. How to: paint terra cotta planters, paint a ceiling fan, fill the wall space above the kitchen cabinets, paint a filing cabinet, refinish a wooden bankers chair, make wall art for your laundry room, make a butcher block island and make a headboard from an old door.