Sprucing the sconces with spray paint

Have you ever been flipping through a magazine or a catalogue — or reading a blog — and come across an idea that strikes you right away.  And not just because it’s striking.  But because you can envision it in your very own home.  It suits your style.  Your taste. Your vision.


And then – here’s the capper – you realize this idea is something you can do right away. Right now. Because you have everything you need on hand:


Ugly, formerly-brassy-gold-then-painted-silver-by-you wall sconces (but you never fully embraced the silver paint).  Check.


Spray paint in a cheery shade of blue.  Check.


Painter’s tape.  Check.


The only catch is the spray paint-wall sconce conundrum.  Because you have no intention of taking down the sconces.  You don’t mess with electricity in your 100+ year old home. And you don’t want to pay an electrician to take them down/hang them up again. So you decide to paint them in place. You spray some spray paint onto a brush on plastic plate outside, and run inside to paint the sconce.  Back.  And forth. Again.  And again.  You partially finish one of the two sconces before deciding this technique isn’t working.  The spray paint is all drippy at first.  And then it dries too quickly.  The foam brush is getting stiff.


So you stop.  You know, so you can regroup …




… and then nothing.  A weeks passes. Then two. Three. Four. Five. At which point in time you finally realize you can no longer live with blue painter’s tape on the walls.  It mocks you.  A constant, daily, hourly reminder of your inability to follow through on this project.


So at the five week mark, you pick a gloomy, gray, unseasonably warm winter day to put the proverbial nails in this project’s coffin.  Only this time you dismiss the foam brush/plastic plate method.  You tape some plastic to the walls and you go for it.  You spray paint those sconces in place.  Right there.  On the wall.  Inside the house.


Now, I don’t recommend this approach.  Luckily it was an unseasonably warm day so I could open the back door for ventilation.  But I won’t lie.  I am feeling a bit  light-headed as I type this …


I’ll also need to attend to a little bit of touch-up on the door moulding.  But that’s okay.  Because the painter’s tape is gone.  And now I’m greeted daily, hourly by my new-to-me cheery blue sconces.




Striking. Check.


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  1. says

    Okay Linda, you need to take an electrician’s course! You might be surprised how easy it would have been to take that down. You crack me up girl. But the end result is fabulous! Are you going to show us what it looks like in the room? :) Have a great week!


  2. says

    ha ha! Yep, there’s nothing like getting an inspiration you can act on NOW! So fun, and I can visualize what you went through…you are brave with the blue but they look great! I need to get some courage….

  3. says

    When I paint anything in the house there is always terrible consequences, and that’s without propellent and a nozzle. I don’t want to think of the mess I would make if I tried. I am now looking at my bathroom light fixture with a raised eyebrow, and I plan to tell Brawn of my thought so he can QUICKLY dissuade me from doing it before I have to scrape glass and repaint walls, and order new counter top.

  4. says

    They look great Linda. I do this indoor technique occasionally with door knobs. Because the only thing worse than taking down a light fixture is pulling out a door knob from an 80 year old door. Love the blue.

  5. says

    OMG I just spray painted an area of the walls in the rental in Curacao right before we left and I could feel it sticking to my lungs. And is that wrong to just spray paint a little corner of a room white? Oh well, I think I’ve been paying the price since because I’ve been sick. :( Your project is way cool though, I’d do the same thing!

  6. Ann Drake says

    I’ve spray painted in my house before…it’s doable if you can open a door. I really want to do this to my dining room fixture but I’m not brave enough. I admire your spunk! Good job and the blue is perfection.

  7. says

    Oh yeah you go girl! Better than taking that off the wall.I hand painted my chandy in my dining room with Annie Sloan paint.There was no way I was going to take that baby down! I may just do that on a few other pieces too.I am dangerous with spray paint in the house.Let’s just say I would not be as neat as you were.Great job and what a fun color too!

  8. says

    Yay for getting it done! And just so you don’t feel all alone i do the same thing – there is a chair all stripped down to her springs sitting in my bedroom cause I can’t take time to get her reupholstered. Sigh.

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