I went to Ikea the other day and one of the things on my list was a cool lamp for baby’s room. My mom was searching for a cool lamp for the nursery, telling me how much she loved her magical nursery lamp. I didn’t find anything “magical”, so I bought the simple Vidja lamp for 19 bucks. When i took it home I realized how very easy it would be to convert it to a fun stenciled project – a lamp that would show a scene when turned on.
I used the fabric paint I already had from my stenciled onesie projects, but you could use acrylic or even experiment with sponging a more translucent paint like watercolor. TIP: If you want to experiment you can make a test using a piece of clear stencil paper, or tracing paper, and place it inside the lamp first to see how it looks. My friend and I thought it would be the most fun if the trees and clouds appeared only once the lamp was turned on, and it could be part of baby’s “it’s time to sleep” ritual.
You could stencil just about anything on the vellum interior surface of the lamp – I actually think I might do one hand painted with colored ink or even watercolor paint. But here is my first attempt – and I used mostly stencils I’d already cut out with just one additional custom stencil specifically created for the lamp.
The Vidja table lamp costs about 20 bucks and is available in turquoise and pink as well as the white I chose. There is also a much taller floor lamp version. This lamp is really a blank canvas, and I can see a lot of ways to work with it.
Stencils I used for this project:
Monkey Stencil (i used the version with the monkey without the banana)
Cloud and Sun Stencil (i created this stencil just for this project its a cloud and sun with cutouts so the sun appears between two of the clouds)
Cut out each of the stencils to get ready to create the stencil montage. For some general guidance in doing a stencil project with optional gradients check out my gradient stencil tutorial here.
Assemble the lamp per the ikea directions, then the take the rolled up cover and tape it to a work surface to begin. I just used part of a cardboard box so I could tape the edges of the shade down, vellum side up if you want the lamp to have the magically appearing image when the light is turned on. You could stencil on the outside too, but I did not try that). I found paper tape was not strong enough to keep it unrolled as I worked, so I used packing tape on the corner edges to get it taped open on my cardboard.
A smarter person would probably place all the stencils out by making light pencil marks where they would all go first, but I just eyeballed it. If you use my stencils you will be able to get three trees on there, but be sure to center the first one carefully. If you are using different stencils I recommend some planning. I recomend applying the paint lightly so some light shows through the color – otherwise it will just look like a silhouette without much color. Also be sure to let each separate stencil area dry before stenciling over it with another color or in a nearby area to avoid smudging.
Here is my finished design. You can see how the cloud and sun stencil can be used to make a “sun behind the clouds effect” – the sun is cut to work like a puzzle between the clouds. I recommend leaving a little space between to keep the overall “stenciled” look going. You can see how much space to leave by observing the curves of the sun relative to the cloud edges.
Paint the clouds very lightly so they have a soft, puffy look. I did them darker around the edges to show definition. Use a very dry brush and add slowly.
Tip: Keep a wet rag or paper towel nearby so you can erase any mistakes right away – the slick surface of the inside of the shade is fairly forgiving before the paint dries.
Let it dry, then insert the shade into the lamp. Here are a couple images of the finished product.