I’m not lacking in creative ideas when it comes to using the many interesting pieces I have salvaged either from the renovation of our house or from our travels. My trouble is, however, I am lacking in some of the knowledge and skills to execute these ideas. This usually means that M has to get roped in and is directed where to cut, drill and so on.

A while back I found a core bit by the river and knew at some point it would be good for something. I finally decided that it would make a good base for a table lamp. After persuading M to drill a hole right through the centre for the flex and then angle grind a channel underneath for the flex to sit it, I thought it was high time that my involvement should be more than just giving it a coat of varnish.

We bought a lamp holder, some flex, a switch and a plug and today, I learnt how to connect them all together. Under M’s patient guidance, I stripped back the outer plastic of the flex to expose the live and neutral cables. Then, using a pair of wire cutters, I removed more plastic coating to reveal the copper wires. Not as easy as it sounds and after cutting the wires themselves a number of times, I was glad we had more flex than we needed! I connected the live and neutral to the lamp holder and then threaded the flex through the core bit. Slightly regretting the fact I thought an on/off switch was a nice touch, I cut the flex, stripped it back again and connected to one side of the switch and then, as you’ve guessed, did it all again for the other side. So far so good. By this time, connecting the plug was relatively simple, just more of the same. It all sounds very straightforward but it actually took me two hours! Well, you can’t be too careful when dealing with electrics!

All that was left to do was test my wiring. In went the bulb, on went the lamp and……..it all worked. If only I had learnt this a little sooner I might have been slightly more use when we were doing the electrics here!

the core bit, varnished and with the hole drilled through

close of up the pattern of the cut stones and cement

finished lamp

finished lamp with switch!

All I need to do now is to find a suitable lampshade. Perhaps I could make one?