Make a Garden Chandelier from Salvaged Goods

Even rusty, shabby metal salvage can inspire glowing creativity. Follow the steps here to assemble your own candlelit chandelier.

A basket from an industrial washer piqued style expert Sue Whitney's imagination as soon as she spotted it in a junk pile at a flea market. "This is the perfect project for a beginner," she says. "And the best part—you don't need any tools!" Whitney picked up some essentials at the hardware store and put the chandelier together in about 10 minutes. If you don't have a dishwasher basket, many other pieces of industrial junk could serve as the base of a garden fixture. Look for shallow trays, pans, or baskets at flea markets and junkyards, or in the corner of your garage!

Once you get to know some of the basics of fasteners and connectors, you can turn almost anything into a treasure. Hang the chandelier from a sturdy branch or beam, fill with flowers, light the candles, and enjoy the glow.

Use salvaged materials for garden planters, too!

You Will Need:

  • Four 3-foot lengths of link chain
  • Four small threaded chain connectors
  • Industrial dishwasher basket, approximately 24 inches in diameter 
  • Large threaded chain connector
  • Heavy-duty jute rope
  • Sheet moss
  • 12 quart-size canning jars
  • 6-inch-wide flowerpot without a drainage hole
  • 5-pound bag of birdseed
  • 12 votive candles

Step 1

Connect an end of one length of chain to one small threaded chain connector. Secure the connector to the dishwasher basket. Repeat with three remaining lengths of chain and three small threaded chain connectors.

Step 2

Connect the chains together above the dishwasher basket using the large threaded chain connector.

Step 3

Securely tie the rope to the large threaded chain connector. When the chandelier is finished, the rope will suspend the fixture from a branch or beam.

Step 4

Gently move the chains to the outside of the basket, then line the interior with sheet moss.

Step 5

Place the flowerpot in the center and the canning jars around the edge of the basket, tucking moss between each piece. Add birdseed and a votive candle to each jar. Arrange fresh flowers in the pot.

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