To be honest, I have a little addiction to making lamps, and if you need help with the electrical wiring aspect, I have a nice electrical tutorial.
I love décor that goes beyond the norm. Put it all together and you get the DIY Tripod Lamp I made out of an old telescope tripod!
That may also be why I love the spherical astrolabe (or armillary).
Pottery Barn sells this one for $130! And that's cheap for one of these babies!
Would you like to know how to make one that looks as good as Pottery Barn's (or better, in my humble opinion) for less than $10?!?
Great! I’m so excited! Here we go...
- 3 wooden embroidery hoops, 10" (~$1 each)
- 1 wooden dowel, 1/8", cut to 17" long (25¢)
- 1 craft ball, 2.5" (~$1)
- wooden shapes: 2 hearts; 2 triangles ($4 bag of assorted shapes)
- metal candlestick (the kind where the top screws off) from thrift store
You'll also need a drill and bits, paint-able caulk (not silicon-based) and paint. Finally, you can either use some really tiny bolts or screws to hold the rings together or you can use glue (again paint-able - not waterproof glue).
If you don't know how to use a drill, keep reading... The rest of you can skip ahead...
Okay, so you want to build this, but you're not sure about using a drill. There's no shame in that. You just don't have to let it stop you. So grab your significant others' (or sister's, dad's, neighbor's) drill and visit Thrifty Décor Chick's Tool School for the Drill! She says it all so well it bears repeating!
1. Build the sphere.
All the parts of the sphere have fancy names, but I'll skip those. Use the pictures as a guide.
2. Make the arrow.
Make the arrowhead and tail. I used my Dremel with a cutting wheel to carefully cut into the wooden hearts and triangles. I cut them so that they would fit together and onto the dowel. If this is not your speed, an arrowhead can also be fashioned out of a bake-able clay, like Sculpey. Hold onto these parts until after the armillary is put together…
I like the look with the sphere in the middle, so I drilled a hole through a craft ball and strung it onto the dowel. You want it to be a snug fit, so don't drill too big of a hole.
3. Put it together
I passed the dowel with the ball on it through the holes in the hoops. I used caulk at all the joints to keep the ball and the dowel in place. Then I finally attached the arrowhead and tail using caulk too.
4. Attach to candlestick base.
I tilted my arrow to 38 degrees (which is the latitude where I live), you can do the same if you want it to be a functional sundial, or just tilt it the way you think looks good. Then I drilled a hole in the bottom of ring #3 where I glued and screwed the candlestick base into place.
I used dark bronze hammered spray paint by Rustoleum, and then dry brushed on some metallic bronze paint for a little extra shimmer (I think I could have used a lot more).
Ahhhh... it's so pretty, don't ya think? Now go make one yourself! I expect the internets to be flooded with these gorgeous beauties! There are so many ways you can personalize this! More rings, or fewer, with or without arrow or inner sphere, different bases, colors, sizes!!! I can't wait to see what you make!
The only thing wrong with this one is it's strictly an indoor item :(
Anyone want a tutorial on making a bigger, sturdier one that can be placed in the garden? Let me know in the comments and if the response is strong I'll get to work on it... but be warned, it won't be quite as easy as this one was (no welding though!)
If you haven't been by Pregnant… with power tools
I was an honor guest posting for you Michelle – and I had so much fun!
HOLY COW!!! Christin, I've seen armillaries around and around, but this knock-off is amazing! Looks just like the real thing! I'm totally impressed!!!! Pregnant...with Power Tools is full of amazing ideas and tips! I want to learn how to use power tools more often and more effectively and Pregnant...with Power Tools is the place! You definitely should pop on over there and look around. You will be impressed. And while you are there, become a follower so you can go back again and again! Go HERE.
Linking to Finding Fabulous, Romantic Home -Show and Tell Friday, Miss Mustard Seed -Furniture Feature Friday, Lit and Laundry - Finished For Friday, The Inspired Room, Remodelaholics Anonymous, Poppies At Play - Creative Cats , Crafts In Bloom, Kojo Designs - Friday Fun Finds, Fingerprints on the Fridge - Feature Yourself Friday. The Girl Creative - New Friend Friday, That's So Cuegly - Craft Concoction, Sweet Charli , Just A Girl