Red Lantern Before & After

1960s hanging fixture

Loryn: These electric hanging lights were everywhere in the 1960s and 70s. I have had this one in storage for a while. I like the look of it, but I hate the 15′ of cord trailing to an outlet that comes with it. It was poised to go to Goodwill until I realized that a battery-operated candle would be perfect for it.


Here I’ve started disassembling the fixture. I cut off the (unplugged!) cord and removed the top metal portion. The bottom metal portion also comes off by twisting off the finial at the bottom. I’ll save the perforated metal diffuser for another project.

The original socket and the replacement stem

I also wanted to remove the socket and replace it with a shorter stem (needed to hold the hanging loop on). I happened to have a shorter piece of lamp pipe to replace it with. You could cut the existing piece off with a hacksaw instead.

The next step was to thoroughly wash the metal parts so I could spray paint them. I used Krylon’s Colonial Red, which is a gorgeous deep red. Then it was simply a matter of reassembling the lantern.


And here is the finished lantern! The battery operated candle is great because you can put it in places that don’t get much air. I thought a remote control for a candle was silly until I came up with this use for it. The lantern will hang close to the ceiling, and the remote makes it really easy to turn on.



One last thing: The lantern had a washer at the bottom of the glass shade, so the candle couldn’t sit flat. I found a large rubber flange in the plumbing department of my local hardware store and spray painted it to match. Now the candle will sit flat, and it isn’t very noticeable.

Painted flange to sit the candle on.

The finished lantern will go in the hallway outside my guest room, to make a night light for guests. I’ll show it when I get the artwork up in the finished hallway!

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