Skip to Content

How to Apply Plaster to a Lamp | DIY

Ever since I was a little girl, I have always loved a good DIY project. I also love a good upcycling project! Taking some old and unwanted and turning it into something beautiful is so rewarding. I have been working on a bedroom makeover for my 7-year-old son for the One Room Challenge and have gotten creative with the room design to save on budget. Last week I took an old, dated lamp and applied plaster for a whole new look. I first saw this project by Jenny Komenda and knew I had to give it a try. It looked simple, affordable and it immediately transformed the look of the lamp. Today I am going to take you through how to plaster a lamp.

How to plaster a lamp and turn your dated lamp into a modern design! | Building Bluebird
#tutorial #upcycle

How to Plaster a Lamp

I found this lamp base at Consign-It, a local thrift store for $15.

How to plaster a lamp and turn your dated lamp into a modern design! | Building Bluebird
#tutorial #upcycle

Materials Required

Step 1 | Apply Tape

Before applying any paint or plaster, you want to tape off the lamp cord and the top of the lamp base. This will protect it from any paint streaks and give it that professional look with a DIY project.

How to paint a lamp

Step 2 | Paint a Primer Base

For lamp bases with a glossy finish, I would recommend a quick base coat of primer. This also helps to block any strong patterns that may be on the lamp base – like the floral design on mine.

Upcycle a dated lamp with paint and plaster

Step 3 | Apply 1st Coat of Plaster

Next, you are going to apply your first coat of plaster. You are going to use the disposable bowl to mix the plaster powder and water with a plastic fork. You will want one part of water for every two parts of the plaster. I just eyeballed this measurement. Once I got a somewhat thick consistency (not super watery) I began applying the plaster to the lamp with a paint brush. You have about 5-10 minutes to apply the plaster before it starts to dry and get a chunky consistency. Let this first coat of plaster dry for about 30 minutes.

Easy DIY to create a modern table lamp

Step 4 | Apply 2nd Coat of Plaster

Follow the same application technique for the second coat of plaster. If your lamp base is a lighter tone and does not have a pattern, two coats may be enough. Let this layer of plaster dry for another 30 minutes.

Upcycle an old lamp for a modern look

Step 4 | Apply 3rd Coat of Plaster

I decided to apply a third coat of plaster to completely hide the floral design on the lamp base. With each layer of plaster, you will have to mix up a new batch in a bowl because it hardens so quickly. Each coat takes about 30 minutes to dry.

Plaster lamp tutorial

Step 5 | Smooth Plaster with Wet Brush

For the final step, dip a clean paint brush in a bowl of water and brush it on the lamp base. This helps to smooth the plaster and blend any spots you may not be pleased with. Let the lamp dry for another 30 minutes and then remove the tape. You now have a beautiful new lamp base!

DIY tutorial for plastering a lamp
How to plaster a lamp

I snagged the lampshade from anther table lamp in my home that I don’t love and it fits great. It was the perfect size and color for this new lamp! For less than $30 I have a large, modern lamp for my son’s bedroom and it was so easy to make!

Easy and affordable DIY to plaster a lamp

Want to save this quick and easy DIY for later? I’ve got you covered! Use the pin below to quickly find this fun and affordable DIY project.

How to plaster a lamp and turn your dated lamp into a modern design! | Building Bluebird
#tutorial #upcycle


Saturday 8th of January 2022



Saturday 8th of January 2022

I am not sure, but I would say probably not if it is a fabric shade. If the base shifts at all the plaster could crack. You can always test it out on an old shade and see if it works!