prairie style lamp with mica shade

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Project by bygrace posted 349 days ago 1583 views 13 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my rendition of an antique prairie style lamp (circa 1900) I saw while on the internet. It was fun to build, and I was pleased with the construction, but, being one of my first projects, I struggled with the finish. Can’t really see from these pictures from my phone, but its a little splotchy in some areas. I didn’t use a pre stain conditioner on the red oak which probably would of helped. I also sanded through the finish on the edges when sanding between coats of Watco oil and spray laquer. The finish stages seem to be more difficult on a smaller project with lots of angles and different grain direction. Hope you enjoy and any suggestions on finishing would be appreciated. (books or videos?)

-- Andy, Waxahachie, Tx.

19 comments so far

View mmh's profile


3322 posts in 2320 days

#1 posted 349 days ago

Nicely done. Did you make the mica shade also? If so, how tricky is mica to work with?

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View bygrace's profile


122 posts in 567 days

#2 posted 349 days ago

Thanks mmh. Yes I did make the lamp shade, it was much more difficult than the lamp base. The mica however is pretty easy to work with. I’ve used both a utility knife and a scroll saw. The saw was the easiest but be careful as the mica dust is very unhealthy for the lungs!

-- Andy, Waxahachie, Tx.

View Ken90712's profile


14821 posts in 1786 days

#3 posted 349 days ago

Well done, great looking lamp…..

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View aussiedave's profile


3014 posts in 422 days

#4 posted 349 days ago

Very nice lamp, it looks great to me…well done.

-- Dave.......Keep calm and make more sawdust....

View sras's profile


3780 posts in 1727 days

#5 posted 349 days ago

Nice design – I like it!

One technique you can try is to prefinish the parts. Mask off the areas that will receive glue first.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View bygrace's profile


122 posts in 567 days

#6 posted 349 days ago

Steve, sounds like an idea worth trying. Thought about that before but was worried about glue up, but masking off those areas might work.

-- Andy, Waxahachie, Tx.

View grace123's profile


151 posts in 1360 days

#7 posted 349 days ago

I love it. I am intrigued—Where is the electric cord? I assume it is inside one of the support posts?

View bygrace's profile


122 posts in 567 days

#8 posted 349 days ago

grace123 – In the original piece, the cord actually came out of the top of the shade, which I guess was common during that time period. In mine, one of the columns is two pieces with a channel routed out down the center.

-- Andy, Waxahachie, Tx.

View Bigrock's profile


232 posts in 1560 days

#9 posted 349 days ago

Very nice looking lamp. On small projects like this one, after poor finishing on some, I have been taping joints and finishing. I then put the project together and clean is very small. I use a tooth brush to get glue out of places I don’t want it. It looks good in the pictures.

View wooded's profile


292 posts in 869 days

#10 posted 349 days ago


-- Joe in Pueblo West, Colo.

View Dark_Lightning's profile


1668 posts in 1706 days

#11 posted 349 days ago

Nice! I have a lamp I bought that has an A&C shade, but it wobbles due to being held in the middle. I like this design. I’ll approach the wife about some of these.

View bygrace's profile


122 posts in 567 days

#12 posted 349 days ago

Bigrock – sound like good ideas worth trying. Thanks
Thanks Joe.
AtomJack – thanks, The downside is the shade isn’t adjustable.

-- Andy, Waxahachie, Tx.

View HillbillyShooter's profile


4348 posts in 890 days

#13 posted 348 days ago

Very nicely done and looks great.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Skylark53's profile


2557 posts in 1658 days

#14 posted 347 days ago

I really like this design. Good work on this project you are sure to enjoy for many years.

-- Rick, Tennessee, John 3:16

View oldrivers's profile


231 posts in 164 days

#15 posted 160 days ago

Great job, I love the lamp, workmanship superb.


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