Sunday, February 27, 2011

My DIY Solar Street Lamp

Today is the first day of my “Blogiversary Week”!!!! Yes, I’m going to streeettcch it out all week! :-) Kind of like when your birthday falls on a Wednesday, but you won’t actually be celebrating til Saturday and then  friends take you to lunch on another day…so you celebrate all week! :-) I LOVE birthdays like that! So I want to celebrate my blog birthday the same way. I have two giveaways that will start Tuesday and Wednesday and then go all week. I will be putting up some printables too. I also have a couple of special projects that I want to share this week.
Have you ever had a project in your mind, but have to wait to put it together? Well, I’ve been waiting since late last summer to make a solar “street lamp” for my yard. It was worth the wait though! It turned out as good as I had envisioned it…even a little better! Last summer I made this small solar light for a table in my garden
Keen Inspirations solar light and knew I wanted to make more. I don’t like the plain straight “stick” solar lights…to me they don’t blend in with anything. I have wanted to make some  of these with different size lights, bases and globes. Last year I got to thinking that if I could put these in a globe for a table, why couldn’t I do something like this:
street lamp
street lamp2 using solar lights instead of electric??? Well, I’ve had all winter to think about it and to collect  fixtures and globes. When it warmed up last week, I got started!
I found these two lovely brass light fixtures at the thrift store…different times, different stores.
Keen Inspirations LightsThe one on the left I bought to be the top of the street lamp. the one on the right I needed for parts and  globes. There were three globes  when I bought it…but  I broke two of them!!! I did find some more though….whew!  I started out by stripping them of all electrical stuff, right down to the metal. I pulled all the wires out and ended up with this:
Then I loosened the screws and  turned the arms of the light fixture up, so the globes would be sitting on top. From this:
DownDown To This:
UpKeen Inspirations solar lightThe “cups” that hold the globes in on the chandelier were smaller than the  bases of the glass globes, but the “cups” that were on the ceiling light came off, so I took the small ones off and and put the big ones on..but forgot to take the  pic of the switch.
I lightly sanded and rubbed away the shine and pit marks. Then everything got a coat of Krylon primer followed by Krylon Satin Black.
Keen Inspirations solar light 
Large cups now on the fixture.
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (2)
I bought several of these solar lights at Walmart last summer. I took the stake off of the light. 
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (7)
and used Gorilla Glue to hold them into the light fixture. The plastic fit right down over the nut in the light fixture.
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (5)Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (4)
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (3)
Meanwhile I had hubby working on the pole for me. He cut the pvc to the right size.  I used one piece of narrower pipe (2.5 inches) and one piece of 4” pipe for the base.  Keen Inspirations (3)
I started out with a 4 foot piece of 3” and and a 30” piece of 4” of pipe and bought an adapter to put to them together. When we held the light fixture over the pipe, the pipe seemed a little wide for it, kind of swallowed it up, so I used a 2.5” piece  instead. Hubby wrapped Gorilla tape to make it fit snugly. Once he had them glued together with regular pvc glue, he cut the tape down even with the top of the adapter. <SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA>Hubby was really gettin’ into my project and even offered to make me a base out of a scrap of avantec plywood.Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (15) He also glued a piece of pvc pipe up into the fixture so that it would slide in and out of the pole for easy change of the solar lights when necessary.
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (6)
When all the pipes were put together to make the pole, I painted them with a coat of Valspar Plastic Primer and then Krylon Satin Black. I gave the wooden base a coat of Kilz 2 primer and then sprayed it black. When it was all dry, hubby put the lights in.
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (8)
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (9)
And here it is finished!
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (10)I’m thrilled with the way it turned out! Even better than I had pictured it in my head!
Here it is  at night
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (12)
Up close you can see the design made by the solar light inside the globe!
Keen Inspirations Solar LIght (11)  
I have it at the beginning of the path where we park and then walk in. It’s nice to have this on when I pull up and not have to worry about turning something on and then off again. We live in the woods…no street lights or neighbors lights to help light our path!
I am so excited about how this turned out that I can’t wait to make  more…with different types of fixtures on top! Like these…
… and more! I plan to use these to light my yard and my garden. I’ll have another one ready later in the week!
Remember that Tuesday is the start of the Starbucks giveaway!See you tomorrow with some printables!
I am participating in Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch and these other parties and many of the parties listed in my sidebar! Come check out some of the awesome projects! I’ve also entered this in the DIY Club monthly contest!

Boogieboard Cottage>HOG>Craft Link parties
all crafts Handmade Projects ~ Add Yours!>

Fantabulous Friday!
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Lovely Crafty Home
A Marvelous MessUndertheTableandDreaming

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Giveaways,Features, Blogiversary…and Stuff….

Okay, first off….next Tuesday is the first anniversary of Keen Inspirations!!! My “Blogiversary”! I can hardly believe it’s been a year already! What’s harder for me to believe is that I’ve stuck with it this long…;-) I have had a few down times and I appreciate everyone sticking with me! I have truly received so much encouragement and joy from all of your comments that I don’t see myself giving this up! I’ve made some new friends this year…and yes, I think blog friends ARE real friends! :-) Sooo…to say thank you and to celebrate one year, I have a couple of giveaways lined up!! I’ll also have some more printables from me and a project (that I’m really excited about) reveal!


First up, will be a giveaway from my friend and fellow homeschool mom, Kim Poteete Madren, Director and Independent Consultant with Pampered Chef!

PChef Logo Signature


I’ll also have a coffee gift bag of goodies complete with a Starbucks gift Card!

Keen Inspirations Starbucks Giveaway

I’ll have a coffee-themed printable and a new definition to print! I’ll keep the details coming as I get them! The giveaways start next Tuesday, March 1, 2011! Stop by and help me celebrate!


I’m honored to have had my Family Definition and 1 Corinthians 13 word art featured at these awesome blogs!


           Today's Top 20


Thank you for the feature  ladies!

Some stuff…

I posted a while back about having problems with getting  comments to post. After reading the comments left for me, I’m not the only one experiencing this! I’ve kept an eye on when it happens and here is what I’ve discovered:

It is a log in issue…when I restart my computer in the morning and read my blogs with a cup of coffee, the first comment I try to leave puts me through this cycle of taking me to the top of the blog I’m trying to comment on…this happens several times before it finally posts…but it never actually asks me to log in! I guess somehow that process logs me in?!?!?!? So, I’ve noticed that when you leave a comment that “posts” you stay at the bottom of the page and can see your comment. If you are taken to the top of the page, scroll down, your comment most likely didn’t post! This also happens sometimes throughout the day, but so far I haven’t found any rhyme or reason to it. I don’t ever “log out” so, I don’t have a clue why it happens later! So, check to be sure you’ve actually “posted”!

Meet “The Tina’s”Keen Inspiratons Tina's Tie Dye

On the left is Tina of Tina’s Tie Dye and on the right is the “other” Tina :-), the winner of the Tie Dyed Tote!

Some more{good} stuff…

Want to own one of these? Click here to enter Gail’s Giveaway at My Repurposed Life.


There are also these specials going on:

Remember that you can get your own Silhouette SD bundle, a great package for $225.00 (retail value 375+)    use the code REPURPOSED at checkout

Silhouette SD
1 roll black premium vinyl
1 roll frosted vinyl
1 roll transfer paper
Home D├ęcor CD

If you already own a Silhouette SD, and you are in need of some Premium Vinyl, you can get that at a great discount of 25% off by using the code REPURPOSED at checkout.

That’s it for now! I’m off to order some of that frosted vinyl that Gail showed today!