Monday, July 2, 2012

Outdoor Lantern Light Fixture

For the past few weeks, I have been working on perfecting our back patio. There have been many {mini} projects going on, and this is the latest. It's our light fixture that hangs over our dining table:) We originally had a fan hanging over the table, but from the moment we moved in last September, I knew that thing had to go. Expecially once we added the dining table! It needed something to make the look complete, but it took me a while to figure out just what that was. I debated whether I wanted a candleabra, or an actual light. The light would attract bugs and be a lot harder to hang... And the candleabra I had my eye on was $70, so that wasn't going to work either. So on to plan C! 

Thankfully, one fine day I impulsively decided to accompany the hubs to a Lowes trip for a tool he needed for the pool. As I typically do, I got distracted in the wonderful world of Lowes and eventually ended up on the outdoor decor isle. That's when I saw it. The beauty that I had been looking for all along! She was just there, waiting for me to grab her off of the shelf! And what is that yellow tag I see? Could it be?? Clearance?? YESSS! Score for Amy!! I ran over, grabbed it, and knew exactly where it was going to go. It was totally meant to be:) And for only $24?? I couldn't even get it that cheap at Marshalls! And we all know how much I love Marshalls! I also hadn't seen a red one like this. Seriously people... this thing was meant for me:)

Now that we knew what fixture we were using, we walked on over to the rope/chain isle to see how we were going to hang this sucker. I knew I wanted to use some old textured rope, but was worried Lowes wouldn't carry anything like that. Well, to my surprise, they DID! I was shocked and so excited! A few weeks ago I saw an antique pulley at a local antique mall and fell in love. It included the beautiful rustic rope and the pulley along with it. It was pretty big though and also pretty pricey. I knew I couldn't use that specific one anywhere in our house, but kept the thought of it in the back of my mind. I really must have lucked out at Lowes that day because about 5 feet to the right of the rope was an entire wall of pullies and accessories. yayyy!!! They were all galvanized metal, so I knew I would have to paint them, but eh - no biggie. We grabbed the supplies we {thought} we needed and headed out. We actually ended up using less supplies than we thought, so that was nice. Too bad I spray painted them before we figured that out!

Here is my little tutorial:

What you will need:

- Hanging lantern of some sort
(make sure it's not too heavy depending on what you're hanging it from. We even considered breaking the glass out of ours, but didn't end up needing to.)
- Rope
- Pulley
- Hook to hang the rope from
- Textured brown or black spray paint (I used black)

Step by Step:

1. Find lantern (carefully break glass out of the lantern if it is too heavy. If the support beam can handle the full weight, don't worry about breaking out the glass. In some lanterns, the glass might not even be the heavy part, the metal/wood might be heavier - just depends on the lantern)

2. Spray paint your pulley and hook whatever color you would like, and wait for them to dry.

3. Test how low you want your lantern to hang. We have low{ish} ceilings on our back porch and I wanted the rope to show more than just a few inches. We actually had to cut off some of the handle of the lantern in order for more rope to hang. Does that kinda make sense? We wanted less handle to show, and more rope.

4. Take down whatever pre-existing light fixture may already be hanging there. In our case, we had a fan. We turned off the breaker (since our outdoor fans were live wires) and safely took down the fan. We capped off the existing live wire and tucked it safely away in an electrical box between the rafters on our ceiling.

5. Screw in the hook where you would like the new fixture to hang from. Make sure to screw it in all the way so there is no chance of it coming out.

6. Thread the rope through the pulley and hang the pulley from the hook. Then find your desired height of the rope/lantern, and knot the rope at the handle. If you are unhappy with the height of everything - no problem! Just untie the rope and try again. I just tied one knot because the weight of the lantern will hold the knot tightly in place. The rope is very textured and won't slip.

7. Sit back and enjoy:)

 Here are some of the process pictures!


 And here is the final product!

{And once more...}



So what do y'all think?? Fun right! Much better than that old yucky fan! We also had a little helper throughout the project:) Little Bailey hates being left out, so she of course had to be involved... or at least she tried. Really not sure how she jams herself between those shutters, but she sure finds a way! Love that little girl:) Hope everyone had a great weekend - Happy early 4th of July! Look out for my {4th of July party} post later on in the week!



  1. OH your kitty is so so so DARLING!!!!!

  2. I've hung a lantern like that before but used black S hooks. This is SO much better looking. And I love the red color too. Happy 4th!

    Robin Flies South

  3. I love your red lantern! It looks fabulous in your outdoor space, especially the way you hung it with rope and pulley!

  4. That looks fantastic...I could never give up my fan though....not's just too hot! The pulley looks great and adds a finished look!

  5. I love your idea and it looks great!

  6. the red lanter looks great! love the hanging rope!

  7. This is SO gorgeous! Hope you can link it up at my trendy tuesday party!!

    1. Just did! Thanks for letting me know about it!!!

  8. It is amazing~ I love it and love the red too!! You are always welcome to come link up at Feathered Nest Friday at my blog too!

  9. I am visiting from A2D! I am so glad I stopped by - I love the lantern light with the pulley. I have two red lanterns just sitting around and I am so psyched to try this out on my porch! It is so amazing!

  10. I love how you hung this lantern. Much better than the fan and Bailey is too cute. My dog is named Bailey, too.

  11. This is a super cute idea, Amy! Love the pulley! It has so much more style than a fan!
    Your project would be perfect to share at TUTORIALS TIPS AND TIDBITS, my new weekly linky party! It is live every Wednesday evening at 8:00. Come on over and join in!

  12. It looks lovely! Love the red :)
    Greetings from Australia♥

  13. Love the new lantern and using the pulley makes it even better!

  14. This light fixture is sweet! I love the lantern style and i love the red! very nice! We'd love it if you'd share this at our Home is Where the Heart is!

  15. Love it !love it !love it!( picture me runnin around doin the crazy dance) I need this for my screen house!!!Looks great!The red was perfect! Great find!

  16. That is a nice looking lantern! I think this one would definitely add beauty to your patio. I do like the red color of the lantern, which is in contrast with the white color scheme of your patio. But maybe it would look good, too, if you will use a light bulb instead of a votive candle. Just sayin’! [Allison Shallenberger]

  17. I love the red lantern! ( and your cat :) !) I just bought a bunch of outdoor lanterns that I plan to paint all bright colors to update my patio, after seeing this I'm definitely doing a red one!