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How to make a desk lamp with can

A little addition to my daughter desk with a homemade lamp. This was quite simple to make and cost almost nothing. I used a can to make the lampshade, some 1×2 in. wood pieces for the foot, 2 yard of wire, a plug, a switch, a socket, and a bulb. The pencil holders are also a DIY, I made them with plastic bottles and a tuna can….It seams that I’m a lot into can recycling lately 😉 The tutorial for the pencil holder is HERE.


Use the plug as a shape and draw a circle in the back of the can with a sharpie. Cut it out, little by little, using a cutter.


Cut four pieces in the 2×1 in. wood. Three pieces have to be 8 inches length and one is 12 1/2 in. long. One edge of the longer piece must be cut at a 45 degree angle.

With a drill, make two holes in the back of the can, just under the socket hole.

Screw a 8in. wood with the can. Put the two screw from the inside of the can. I used 3/4 in. screw, that way, it doesn’t go through the wood.

Keep building the lamp foot, by fixing the 12 1/2 in. wood at the end of the 8 in. one. The 45 degree angle next to the end of the first wood. Use some glue and two screws to fix both wood together.

To make the base, glue and screw two 8 in. wood pieces, aligned with the end of the wood. You must place one on each side, and use two screws to fix them.

Drill two holes in the lamp foot, to pass the wire. On in the first wood and a second  next to the base. The drill bit must be the same dimension as you cable wire. Pass the wire through the holes, then mount the switch and the plug.

Use a glue gun or any silicon glue, to fix the socket into the can hole. Then you can put the bulb in place, please use only energy saving bulb or LED.

The last thing to do is to make the lampshade pretty. Cut a rectangle of paper, same dimension as your can, and glue it around. I like to use glue stick, it avoids the paper from curling.

And done!!! A brand new desk lamp! What do you think? Of course you can easily personalize it, you can for example paint the wood, and choose any paper graphic you like! If you make one, I would love to see it!! Just drop me a comment!





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ann daniel

Thursday 1st of November 2018

such a great idea. thanks for sharing.

Roger Roy

Monday 12th of March 2018

That is really awesome. You did a great job. It was a beautiful thought! Just wanna say thank you for the tips you have shared. I really appreciate of doing this.


Thursday 3rd of November 2016

Quel beau bureau ! Emmy a les idées et le matériel pour faire ses bricolages... Manque plus que son blog ;-)Chouette lampe en tous cas ! J'espère qu'elle me la prêtera quand on vient !

Ama Ryllis

Wednesday 16th of November 2016

Pas sure ça...faudra que t’amènes du stock de chokotoffs ;)

Traditional Rugs anc carpets online

Wednesday 26th of October 2016

Wow... Masterpiece. Very easy to make and cost effective. The step by step tutorial of making this lamp is very easy and even i can also make it in my home now. Thanks for sharing such a great posts..

Ama Ohoh blog

Wednesday 2nd of November 2016

The only money I spend was for the cord, socket and the you are right very economic DIY!