Makeover of My Outdoor Light

Makeover of My Outdoor Light

Today I thought I would share a little project I recently completed to try and pretty up my front veranda. The outdoor light was in rather a sad state, with the previous owner painting it to match the bricks. In my continued (and deepening) love affair with chalk paint, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to experiment a little more. So here is a makeover of my outdoor light with chalk paint. Makeover of My Outdoor Light This is the before photo, as you can see its rather an ordinary brass outdoor light. It’s nothing special and really needs replacing. However, I haven’t been able to find a light I like and thought this the perfect opportunity to experiment on one that really … if I’m honest … couldn’t look any worse!

Makeover of My Outdoor Light

The light is modeled on an old-fashioned carriage lamp, the sort they used on buggies and early motor cars. The idea is to modernises it, but keep the “antique” feel of the lamp.

I started by pulling the whole thing apart, which was very easy … the key is remembering how it fits back together … thank goodness for the “before” photo. The only part left attached to the wall was the mounting bracket. Makeover of My Outdoor LightAfter sanding with medium sandpaper (about 180 grade) to remove the old flaky paint, I gave the individual parts 2 coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) in GraphiteOnce dry, I gave the whole lot a light sand with a very fine sandpaper (about 210 grade) to show a little of the original brass. Makeover of My Outdoor LightI then applied a coat of ASCP Duck Egg wash, lightly wiping away excess with a rag, leaving just a hint of colour. The wash was about 1 part paint to 2 parts water.

Allow the base coat to dry thoroughly … at least overnight. I was too hasty applying the duck egg wash. Wiping away some of the graphite colour and revealed too much of the original brass underneath.

I left the light as it was, thinking it might look all right once I reassembled it. But even mounted back on the wall, there was too much brass showing. I touched up these areas … allowing ample dying time! Makeover of My Outdoor LightI was pleased with the contrast of the darker colour again the brickwork. However, I wanted some more colour, so using the dry brush technique, I applied more ASCP Duck Egg on a couple of the edges and surfaces. The dry brush technique is basically loading your brush with a little paint, and wiping off any wet paint or use a rag to blot your paint brush before painting. Then lightly, almost in a flicking motion, paint the protruding surfaces. This allows a lot of control over the amount of paint and a natural blend of colour. Makeover of My Outdoor Light Makeover of My Outdoor Light I have a covered front entrance, so the light doesn’t see much rain. To be honest, I don’t know how chalk paint on brass would last out in the open. Makeover of My Outdoor Light Looking back, perhaps a hint of purple might have given a great patina look. I’ll leave that too next time. Makeover of My Outdoor LightMy little light looks better after my makeover. It’s not perfect, but at least all the dead bugs are gone! Plus I feel more confident now experimenting with different painting techniques and colours. I need to remind myself there are no rules when it come to the creative process!

Do you have any tips for paint on brass or metals?

Also sharing at

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20 responses

  1. Pingback: Great Ideas -- 20 Summer DIY Projects!

  2. Pingback: Talented Tuesday Link Party #28 | Crafty Staci

  3. gotta love when a 2nd chance turns out so well! such a lovely ‘new’ lamp and sure to give a bit of satisfaction every time you see it 🙂 If you haven’t yet, we would love you to drop by on Fridays for our upcycle link party – Creative Challenge. While this month is silverware, any upcycled craft is welcome!


  4. Amazing makeover on your outdoor light Jane. I’ve been looking at mine, and trying to decide whether to replace it or paint it. It’s b.a.d.

    thanks for sharing at catch as catch can!

    catching you


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