We’ve always been total upcycling enthusiasts but that’s never more true than when we change out the lightbulbs in our home. There’s just something about the glass orbs that seems too interesting, precious, and visually appealing to justify tossing them in the garbage.
That’s why we often save them, in hopes that we can find another use for them or a creative way to use our crafting skills to transform them into something practical or decorative and generally give them a new lease on life.
Repurpose and Upcycle Lightbulbs (Ideas)
Just in case you love the idea of finding new DIY so repurpose and upcycle lightbulbs just as much as we do, if not more, here are 15 of the very best ideas, designs, and tutorials that we’ve come across so far in our search for inspiration and guidance!
1. Concrete lightbulb wall hooks
If you’re going to put in the time and effort it takes to turn your lightbulbs into something else, would you prefer to make sure it’s something that’s at least a little bit practical, even if it has awesome design appeal as well? We can understand that; we always feel very accomplished when we create something that we’ll continue to use. That’s why we thought this awesome hallway coat rack idea from Instructables was so cool! They show you how to use lightbulbs as cement molds to make bulb shaped hooks.
2. Tiny lightbulb terrarium
Besides being a crafting enthusiast, are you also a lover of all things greenery? We are too, but we find that we have trouble doing much gardening or keeping live plants in our home because we’re so busy. That’s why air plants and creative terrariums are such a lifesaver! This adorable DIY terrarium created in the little space inside a lightbulb is the perfect example of what we mean, and The Hipster Home is here to show you how it’s done.
3. Rustic twine wrapped light bulb pear decor
If you’re going to turn your old lightbulbs into something else, are you convinced that you’d have a lot more fun making them look entirely different, just for the sake of real transformation? Then you’ll need to pick something with that similar unique shape, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible! We’re absolutely in love with with these jute string wrapped pears that Sweet Society made using lightbulbs as their base.
4. DIY hanging lightbulb vase
Did we actually really pique your attention when we started talking about the idea of combining lightbulbs and greenery in the same sphere but you can’t help wondering whether terrariums aren’t the only kind of plant based project you can do? Well, thanks to Jakob Morr‘s tutorial, we happen to know that they’re not! Check out how they made a hanging lightbulb vase to go along with their bulb terrarium.
5. DIY lightbulb snow globe
Have you actually been scrolling through our list looking for something to make that your kids can get in on the DIY process for as well? In that case, we think Intructables might have just the kind of thing you’re looking for! Take a better look at their page to see how they made tis funny little glitter filled snow globe out of a lightbulb, step by step. They even show you how to do it with a base that lights up.
6. DIY lightbulb salt and pepper shakers
Just in case you’re still feeling intent on turning your old lightbulbs into something with practical function but you’re not sure that you’re quite ready for the challenge of making an entire cement and wood coat rack, here’s a smaller idea that will help you out in the kitchen and at the dinner table! Snapguide gives you all the info you’ll need to turn two old lightbulbs into a pair of salt and pepper shakers.
7. Multi-bulb dining room chandelier
Are larger and more hands-on projects precisely the kind of thing you had in mind because you’re a pretty handy home DIY enthusiast and you love making statement pieces that catch guests’ eyes when you have friends over? Well, if you’ve got the space in your dining room and you can get your hands on enough bulbs, then we think you just might be the perfect person to give this fantastic multi-bulb dining room chandelier featured with great instructions on Love & Renovations a try.
8. DIY old lightbulb sculptures
Rather than making something productive, do you much prefer to craft in order to make things that are whimsical and just for fun, like art pieces that are purely decorative? Then we’d be willing to bet that you’ll get along a little better with something like this old lightbulb sculpture featured in detail on Family Chic! It’s got a sort of blended modern and rustic chic to it that we really appreciate.
9. Upcycled lightbulb necklace
Are you actually such a big fan of the upcycled style and industrial chic look of things that are made from repurposed lightbulbs that you can’t help wishing you could actually wear some of the things you’ve seen? Well, if you can get your hands on slightly smaller lightbulbs than average then you might actually have what you need to make these awesome upcyclced lightbulb necklaces that will let you do just that! Get the info you need for trying these out for yourself on Stuff Steph Does.
10. Artichoke centrepieces made from lightbulbs
Has the kind of idea you’ve seen so far that piqued your interested the most actually been those that involve using a lightbulb as the base of your project but making something that’s completely different by the end of the process, so you can’t even tell that there’s a bulb in there somewhere? Then we think you’ve going to adore this awesome centrepiece idea from Bliss Bloom! Their tutorial guides you step by step through the surprisingly interesting process of using canvas to turn a lightbulb into an artichoke.
11. Macrame wall hanging lightbulb terrarium
Are you actually still thinking about the hanging garden and terrarium ideas we showed you earlier on our list but you’re the kind of cautious and well informed crafter that likes to see as many version of the same idea as you can, just so you know you really did your research and will use the best methods and techniques? Then here’s a good alternative tutorial for a similar kind of hanging terrarium for your consideration, this time offered by Simple Home, Simple Life.
12. Fun Halloween lightbulb spiders
Are you still thinking about different ways to get your kids in on the idea of turning your old lightbulbs into something else in order to teach them the values if repurposing, but you’re just not sure that combining glass and water in one place like the snow globe calls for is really the best plan? In that case, if Halloween is more your jam anyways, we’d suggest thinking about this awesomely spooky lightbulb spider craft outlined in detail on Everyday Dishes instead.
13. Lightbulb topiary place cards
Are you still feeling rather intrigued by our mentions of things like sharing the look of awesome recycled lightbulbs with those around you and impressing guest, but you just haven’t yet seen an idea that you think is manageable for you? Then maybe you’d have better luck with this very simple idea that’s great for uniquely shaped and more rounded bulbs! Check out what Ruffled has to say about making topiary inspired lightbulb place cards for the next dinner you host.
14. Lightbulb oil lamps
Are you still feeling rather enamoured indeed with the idea of making some kind of light based project from your old lightbulbs, but you’d rather do something smaller and more old fashioned than huge and rustic like the chandelier idea we showed you earlier on our list? Well, if you love candles even half as much as we do, then perhaps this lightbulb oil lamp tutorial featured in great, straight forward detail on Instructables will be a little more up your alley!
15. Lightbulb ship in a bottle craft
Have you actually felt completely fixated on this whole idea of putting tiny things for display in the little space inside the lightbulb but plants aren’t really what you had in mind? Well, if you’re a person who loves working in miniature and you’ve ever found the concept of making a ship in a bottle neat, then we’re pretty sure this small DIY ship inside a lightbulb that Yazzy O’Brien shows you how to create is just the kind of thing you’ve been holding out for.
Have you made other kinds of awesome DIY lightbulb crafts and projects before that you were very happy with indeed but that you don’t see here on our list? Tell us all about what you created and how you did it or link us to photos of your finished work in the comments section!