So you see my point. Capiz chandeliers = not cheap.
So fast forward to the light fixture in my bedroom (remember the postcard shelves?). One of the down sides to living in an apartment is the fixtures. (Wait…are there any up sides to living in an apartment??) You have to work with what ya got.
And this, my friends, is not a lot to work with.
So I took the glass cover off to see what I could potentially work with. I started wondering what I could install here that would be temporary and harm-free when I move out. I had seen people attach drum shades to existing fixtures to immediately create a brand new, temporary fixture, but because of how close this bulb is to the ceiling, that wasn’t going to work.
So one day in December, I was looking through blogs and saw a tutorial on Bower Power Blog for using wax paper to make a paper tree. In that post, she mentioned using the same wax paper method to create a capiz chandelier. *Cue tires-screeching-to-a-halt sound.* Picture a light bulb appearing above my head. (No pun intended. Seriously. 😉 )
A capiz chandelier…out of wax paper…
Knowing what I had to work with, I started planning some type of frame to hang strands of wax paper circles from. I’m sure there are several different ways I could have done this, but this one worked well for me.
So, enter several trips to Goodwill and other secondhand shops in search of the right lampshade to tear apart and use. (Yes, this is finally the post about the search for lampshades I’ve been alluding to.)
These are the materials I started with: a lamp shade, wax paper, fishing line and a wire hanger.
I started by tearing apart the lamp shade since I only needed the wire spheres from within the frame. I chose this shade because it was one that attached directly to the light bulb itself (as opposed to a harp).
This was the first try at a frame. I ended up adding a third tier between the two pictured to give it more fullness, but you get the idea. I wrapped the top tier in white grosgrain ribbon (from the dollar store…I already had it!) to cover the color of the wire since you might see it through the wax paper. The “V” pieces are pieces of wire I cut from the wire hanger and super glued/hot glued on.
Then came the task of making the faux capiz shells. Warning: this will take a lot of patience, time and is much easier if you have a circle cutter; I do not have a circle cutter and I was too cheap frugal to buy one just for this project…so I used an exacto knife and cutting mat.
I took three sheets of wax paper, ironed them together and used the lid of a baby food jar to trace the circles onto my paper. I was at least wise enough to staple three sheets together so I would be cutting out multiple circles at a time.
And so you cut. And cut. And cut.
And cut…and cut…andcutandcutandcutandcut. *gasps for breath*
I cut somewhere close to 550 circles, I think. I was making strands of 10 and did three tiers of strands…so…this took a few nights of cuttingcuttingCUTTING. I just kept telling myself how much money I was saving, which = a lot.
I ended up forgoing the fishing line and using plain old white thread to connect the circles (this provided a lot more movement to the strands, which is important for capiz chandeliers!), so I was able to take that back, making the only cost for this project the wax paper and lamp shade. I just laid the circles down in a row, laid a string across them and dabbed a dot of hot glue at the top of each circle (see picture below).
So, in summation, you iron-iron-iron, cut-cut-cut, glue-glue-glue and attach-attach-attach the strands to the frame. Capisce? Err…capiz? 😉
How much better is this??
Doesn’t it look like the expensive chandeliers up there? Best $3 I’ve ever spent.