Repurposed, thrifted, or upcycled materials get a light, bright makeover as these easy, do-it-yourself pendant lights. Bring a custom look to your space without the hefty price tag, perfect for homeowners and apartment-dwellers alike.
These DIY pendants start with an inexpensive light socket set from a home center paired with a clever container as the shade (rummage through your closet or shop secondhand stores for bargains). For each, first use a hole saw to cut a hole from your shade about 1/4 inch smaller than the widest part of the socket. Then thread the plug and cord through this hole, starting inside the shade; the socket should fit snug against the hole without pulling through. If the weight of the finished fixture will be too much for the wire, switch to a more supportive wire or add a decorative chain.
Top photo, from left: (1) Shop your local discount store for colorful plastic cups that will give your space an extra glow. (2) Dress up your decor by dangling a summer straw hat, which will bring a warm glow come winter. (3) An ornate, punched-metal kitchen utensil holder creates instant ambience and a romantic glow. (4) Suspend a budget-friendly, translucent storage bin upside down for a colorful take on the pendant light. (5) A shapely water bottle rescued from the recycle bin and fitted with a night-light bulb is an eco-friendly (and super budget-friendly) way to add gleam. (6) To bring texture to your space, attach two bamboo wastebaskets using tiny metal hinges on one side and hooks on the opposite side (which makes it easy to open the fixture to change the lightbulb). (7) Transform your trash into a twinkling treasure with a patterned plastic trash bin -- it's a great way to print in trendy pattern and color to an otherwise simple lighting treatment. (8) An illuminated gourmet food tin is a delish accent in a kitchen—just remember to open it from the bottom and clean it well.