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My Love of Garage Sales & DIY Lamp Makeover

I love going to garage sales and finding great deals on things I would normally spend at least double on at the store. If I am ever looking for something specific it never fails, I always find it while we are out at garage sales, someone is always selling whatever it is I want, it’s just a matter of if you can talk them down on the price or if they are already asking a fair price for the item you desire.

Lucky for me, I get to go to garage sales with my husband. He is the best person to have with you when it comes time to haggle. He never overpays, never backs down, and always gets a good deal. This is perfect because I feel physically sick when I overpay for things, I have to get a good deal or I walk away from the item no matter how much I want it.

Maybe my obsession with not overpaying is why I love garage sales where you are able to fill your trunk up with a bunch of cool stuff for only a few bucks.

I love spending the day driving around town with my family, stopping for a fountain drink and some snacks at a gas station. I like listening to music but not intentionally, just kinda hearing songs in the distance on the radio, not something you picked out for this occasion but it is now the soundtrack to your fun day.

Although the best part of garage sales is when my husband and I first hop out of the car and he grabs my hand as we walk up to the sale together, I also enjoy finding things that lead to fun projects. Sometimes you find only parts of a project but with any luck, you will be out at garage sales again soon so the hoarder attitude that a lot of garage sale enthusiasts share works in your favor here.

I found a really unique looking lamp at a garage sale a while back and most people wouldn’t buy it because it had a broken glass shade but it was almost free so I bought it anyway. I knew eventually I would find a shade that fit it but it turned out that it’s odd shape made it nearly impossible to find a replacement shade so I decided to use some other spare parts to create a fun garage sale lamp makeover.

This past weekend we had to head out of town in the afternoon and it was a rainy day so I was excited to do something outside even if it was just going for a drive with my family. We were pretty excited when we arrived in the town we were headed to only to find out it was the day they were having their city wide garage sales.

In case you are new to garage sales, a city-wide garage sale is when most of the houses in the town participate and have their own sales. That usually means you can park your car and hit about 5 garage sales before hopping back into your car to drive to the next block to do it all again.

Shopping the City Wide Garage Sales are one of my favorite things to do!

I was so excited when I found this lampshade in a free box at a garage sale. Well, initially I was puzzled and thought why would anyone throw out a cute lampshade like this at a garage sale, why not throw a price on it?

So I had to give it the smell test just in case a cat peed on it and that drove the value down, which makes sense, but it turned out it was the way I like my lampshades, pee free.

This particular garage sale lampshade caught my eye because my daughter has an obsession with anything turquoise and she also loves chevron.  So I grabbed it, smelled it, and headed to the car with my free lampshade perfect for a garage sale makeover.

My daughter was waiting in the car because we could see her from the driveway and she absolutely hates garage sales. She looked over my seat and said “Oh, I’m so jelly”, apparently that is the cool way to let someone know that you like what they have. I was happy she liked it because although I didn’t tell her, I got it for her with the intention of finding a lamp and adding a little bit of sparkle to it.

When we arrived home for the night, I got started on my garage sale lamp makeover project and I gathered my supplies, plugged in my hot glue gun, burned my hands pretty badly with the previously mentioned hot glue gun, and then I got to work.

I used the hot glue to secure one of the rings that came with the lamp to the lampshade and then secured the other to the lamp.

This allowed me to line them up on the inside once the lampshade was on the lamp and secure it in place with a little more hot glue.

I then added some sparkle to the lamp by hot gluing a few sparkly jewels I found in a random craft box at one garage sale and a little sparkly flower I found in another free box at a garage sale.

I like the way the sparkle looks against the dulled colors on the chevron pattern but my real inspiration behind adding the fake “diamonds” to this piece was my daughter’s online nickname is Diamondz, so I knew she would appreciate the additional sparkle.

Once all of the sparkles were added, I put a light bulb in and my garage sale lamp makeover was complete.

It’s hard to imagine at this point that this project started with a bunch of parts spread out among a few different garage sales.

I love the way it turned out and now I am ready to hit some more garage sales! I hope we get to hit a few more city wide garage sales before the nice weather leaves for the year.

You can find some good deals on the items I used in this post by clicking the links below to head over to Amazon.

These links are affiliate links which means if you do make a purchase I will receive a small commission for sending you over there but keep in mind that this is at no extra cost to you, so feel free to click away and get a good deal!

Chevron Lampshade

Brass Table Lamp 

Diamond and Crystal Appliques


Tell me about your favorite garage sale finds, do you love garage sales as much as I do? Please share the post on your favorite social network and inspire others to makeover garage sale finds, too!

Kristi Kirk Trent

Monday 15th of November 2021

Love the lamp and the fact that you and your husband hold hands walking up to a garage sale. We do that too, up to a point. We'll be walking along holding hands... then poof! Hands drop when we reach the edge of the sale and we go our separate ways to search for treasure. It's like we don't even know each other.


Wednesday 19th of January 2022

That sounds like a great plan to score some good deals!

ellen beck

Monday 11th of September 2017

Thats a cute project! My husband also loves the sales and we often go on weekends to find treasures. Itis amazing what you can find We have bought many things over the years and repurposed them.


Friday 5th of May 2017

My in laws are garage sale machines, they're forever finding great things that just need a little fixing or cleaning up. You can really do well at it.

Kate | Life of a Ginger

Thursday 4th of May 2017

This is such a fun project! I love how you pick up so much at garage sales.

Martine - MeUnfinished

Wednesday 3rd of May 2017

Really cool how you transformed this lamp! I like garage sales for the same reasons and sometimes we can get great finds! They are a creative's dream :)