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DIY Wine Glass Chandelier

DIY Wine Glass Chandelier
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Update a tired old light fixture McGyver-style using nothing but wine glasses and wire!

We hated our kitchen light fixture since the day we moved in. Unfortunately, the fixture is coming from a 20' ceiling and is hanging over an island, meaning that changing it would have involved significant scaffolding or a killer ladder (which a. I don't have and b. I wouldn't climb up even if I did!). We finally decided to wage war on the fixture. 

Step 1. Locate an unloved original fixture. This one didn't fit the space well, didn't put off much light, and was not a great focal point to the kitchen. We removed the glass bowl and the bowl supports, leaving the bulbs and housing intact. We wrapped the white fixture in silver vinyl (we are a decal company.... got to get that in there somewhere!) to make it disappear. You could skip the vinyl and paint it or just leave it the way it is. You won't really see it once the glasses are in place. 

Step 2, Get wine glasses. Yes I have a lot of them. I collect them when we travel, not to mention the random tasting glasses you get to keep when you visit some wineries. If nothing else, you can hit Craigslist, goodwill, or a garage sale or two and pick up a bunch of stemware on the cheap. This is our wine cellar that my hubby hand built. We put in the wine glass chandelier when we built it about 5 years ago, and haven't lost a single glass from it. We created that one using a $9 single bulb fixture from Lowes and put an Edison bulb in the middle. 

Step 3. Cut wire in various lengths (you'll get a feel for it when you get started) and wrap a wine glass stem on one end, then thread the wire through the ring at the top of the fixture, balancing the other side by wrapping a similar glass. Keep going until you run out of glasses or are happy with the result. We didn't count the glasses, but there are at least 50 in this fixture. We used 17 gauge wire that we had laying around (from an old electric fence project). Pro tip: wash the glasses in the dishwasher before you get started. Dust and water spots do show up when the light hits them.





All in all it took an hour or two to put the thing together (not counting dishwasher time). The kitchen chandelier has 4 bulbs in it (clear bulbs work best), and it is much brighter. This project cost us nothing since we used wire and glasses that we already had around, and we even reused the old glass and supports from the fixture to create a bird bath in the garden. Now everybody's happy!

About the Author

Morgan Battisti

IT analyst turned business owner, Morgan is the creative director at Trading Phrases--making walls beautiful one design at a time.


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