Ah, the projects we have. This Easy DIY Light was another we kept putting off, simply because there was always some other more important task at hand. But today it poured. And though my Yvan does not shy from even the harshest weather conditions (being the woodsman that he is), I was able to convince him today was “the day” we stay in and finish a DIY that was long awaited.
A “Light” Mix of Modern and Antique
Five or six years ago (I told you we put this one off for awhile), Yvan and I would peruse a Flea Market that was magnanimously overloaded with both junk and hidden treasures.
We both spotted this fabulous “Yoke” riddled with grooves of hand carving. Perhaps you would consider this more in the “junk” category, than “hidden treasure”. But Yvan and I saw “potential”.
Those “rose-coloured-lens” are what have always equally gotten us in trouble AND have been the BEST vision of our life. We both see the “best” in things (or persons), when others might reject them simply based on the ‘hassle’.
This was such a moment. I HAD to have it.
I googled and scouted Pinterest for a DIY lighting fixture made from a yoke and found ….nothing. Still, I was particularly captured by its’ rustic charm and the fact that it offered a nod to that secret place in my heart that longs to live in a repurposed barn.
We paid around $40 for it, and left with smiles. Happily lugging it home, it was carted lovingly to the basement to be dreamed of (albeit procrastinated over) for years to come.
Well, today was THE DAY.
I had a light fixture that I had purchased in my impatience “to have a light fixture”. But I hated it and decided to wait it out. Amazingly, we were able to up-cycle my mistake.
Don’t Shy Away from the “Unfinished Project”
I don’t know about you but I despise unfinished projects. I am very “Type A” when it comes to projects in wanting things done yesterday. My husband has a more ‘balanced approach’ in incredible work ethic (he would raise barn in a day himself by sheer effort) but does not stress about a time frame the way I do.
We both compliment and conflict (healthfully) with each other here.
We conflict by seeing a different time frame for projects, but we compliment in that he greatly assists me in patience, while I encourage in ‘forward focus’.
Today, we ‘forward focused’ to a finished project that took altogether about 30 minutes to create, in what took years in the coming.
Now, obviously I could have figured out some ‘how-to’s ‘ in the last several years for an Easy DIY Light. That DOES happen sometimes, when my Yvan is doggedly working his heart out at other tasks. But this one was something we NEEDED to finish together.
And by “together” I mean I witnessed him re-wire everything and I assisted by holding one side of the yoke.
But still. It was a delicious moment!
Re-Create it For Yourself
This simple DIY project can be re-created even if you cannot find a yoke.
Scour your local Antique dealer. Ask a family member or friend with a barn or shed if they have any old fixings from “farm life” lying around.
This yoke worked perfectly for this EASY DIY Light. It had these perfect little holes bored through the wood, like an invitation for creativity.
Here’s HOW to re-create this easy DIY light fixture at home:
- One Antique Yoke or Pulley often found at local Antique Dealers or Flea Markets.
- Two (or More) Hanging Light Fixtures such as this to hang from your “yoke”.
- Visualize what you want your fixture to look like. Plan out how you want it to hang (how low, at and angle or straight), and choose a place with enough space. Check out Pinterest for more ideas!
- The “easiest” bulb base is a hanging one with “poles” attached. Examine the light fixture and find where to “unscrew” the bulb base. We “up-cycled” a light fixture that I had previously purchased so it required a bit more unravelling of wires to begin. But even with the added complication, we completed this project in under thirty minutes!
- If you are also “up-cycling” a used or vintage light fixture, you will need to remove the wiring carefully, keeping it attached to the lightbulb base. If you must cut the wires to remove them, Be sure to leave the wires long enough to attach to the ceiling. Otherwise, simply unscrew the base and stick the poles through the hole in your “yoke”. If you decided on a “Pulley” or another kind of antique farm fixture like a “Whipple Tree”, simply purchase a light bulb base with a hanging wire like this one for easy instalment through wrapping or weaving through handle attached to your antique. Here are some more ideas!
- Once you have finished wiring to your yoke or antique of choice, it is time to connect it to the ceiling. Be sure to adjust your yoke to the right height, and “straightness”. Have a friend or family member help visualize the best depth above your dining room, table or kitchen island.
- We have an already exposed ceiling from current renovations, which makes wiring and hanging less complicated. But if you are working with sheetrock, here is a link for a simple way to hang a light fixture.
- Have a friend hold the yoke while you drill or screw your purchased/up-cycled base to the ceiling. Be sure it is tightly secured to the ceiling before you release the yoke, avoiding the yoke dropping onto the light bulb bases.
- Once connected to ceiling and wiring, flip the switch and you’re done!