Transform a vintage coffee percolator into a lamp

My friend Susan Schneider of Shandells.com and I concocted another upcycling project: Transforming vintage percolators into table lamps. Susan — a professional lamp-maker — then used my percolator, found two more on her own, and turned out these adorable lamps.


lamp made from vintage coffee potI really like this idea because I see these vintage coffee pots for sale dirt cheap — all the time — there is a surplus, for sure! — and I would love to have one as a lamp to admire and use a practical way.

lamp made for vintage coffee percolatorIn the video, Susan talks about the process, explaining why she consulted with a professional metalworker and glasscutter to help with some of the drilling.

lamp made from vintage coffee potShe also shows off the finial made out of the percolator cap (the piece where you always see the coffee perk!) and the lampshades she made from vintage wallpaper.

These lamps are cute as a button, but not in a too-much-sugar in your coffee kind of way. Susan now has the three lamps she made for sale in her online store.

  1. pam kueber says:

    A reminder, the #1 commenting rule of the blog is: “No one can be made to feel bad for their choices.” I let this dialog go on because… the stakes are pretty low… we’re talking about vintage percolators, not trading in stolen kidneys or solving for cancer.

    Even so: Please don’t use words on this blog like: Ugly, Hideous, Horrific, Tacky, etc., because they insult folks who think their tastes and decor are Beautiful, Lovely, Pretty, Happy, etc. I have never ever ever met anyone who was not trying to create a home that was beautiful. Please take care to ensure comments are constructive and not unnecessarily hurtful. Thank you.

  2. pam kueber says:

    Eartha, I personally know how much time Susan takes to make these lamps, and how much it takes her to maintain her studio and inventories. The profit margin ain’t that great. That said: If you want to take the time to gather the materials and learn to Do It Yourself, you can save a lot of money — time = money. That’s why we are showing these ideas — to provide inspiration. This reminds me of when I showed those Christmas wreaths made out of vintage Christmas ornaments. They were $75. One person wrote that she knew should could make one of her own cheaper — my post was a DIY tutorial — but she said ‘I know I never will’ so coughed up the cash to buy one direct. Hey, I think that’s called The Economy! 🙂

  3. pam kueber says:

    I love this idea, Helaine. I’m going to keep an eye out with this potential re-use in mind!

  4. Debbie says:

    I love this ideal. I purchased a percolator at an estate sale and this is just what I needed to do something with it. It will be great in my new condo, I think I will put in on top of my pie safe. Thanks for the ideal.

  5. Jolene says:

    Pam, I love this idea and though I don’t have the time to re-purpose them myself, I will now be on the lookout for cool retro percolators for my shop. It’s great to see vintage items being enjoyed all over again. I have several groovy coffee carafes, any ideas for re-purposing them?

  6. Jodie says:

    I LOVE the idea of Upcycling no longer usable objects! I have so many percolators on display that cannot run, but are FANTASTIC in shape and design <3 FABO idea!

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