I found super similar styles of lamp online and they were a lot of money, so I knew even with the cost of wiring, I would be saving a bundle. It was worth it to have such a fun lamp, even Young House Love have their own version for $70.
The key was finding the right wiring kit for the hanging cord. I wanted it to be white and round, and most of all, I wanted it to be CHEAP.
Enter The Hemma light kit set from Ikea. (In the past I have used Hemma cords on multiple projects which you can find at the bottom of this post.)
I like the Hemma set because it has a really long cord (which you can cut down if you don’t need it). Best part? It is only 5 BUCKS!!
Depending on your lamp you can get white or black and for an extra dollar you get a switch. They also sell a line now that have fabric wrapped cords called Sekond (which are fabulous) but they are a little more money. If you aren’t near an Ikea you can find them on Amazon or you could always use a non-Ikea version.
I used the Hemma Kit and you can see now i have a fully functional plug in overhead task lamp over my garage workbench with a total cost of $11:
The trick when using this cord set is that it isn’t clear how you take it apart, since I don’t really think you are supposed to. It is an Ikea Hack!
Obviously for this part of the tutorial you want to make sure your light isn’t plugged in. As always, if you are not comfortable working with electricity or do not understand any part of this tutorial, please contact a professional for help.
SUPPLIES:Small flathead screwdriver
REALLY small screwdriver
Optional (if you want to shorten the cord):
Wire stripping tool
INSTRUCTIONS:First you need to unscrew the plastic screw that holds the cord inside the bulb housing:
Then you need to stick a thin screwdriver down behind the metal contact plate that is against the side of the lightbulb socket. This metal flap keeps the plastic pieces from unscrewing. If you pry it forward you can then completely unscrew the bottom of the housing from the top.
It is difficult to see in my black socket housing, but this image from hanttula using the white housing is a little more clear:
When you unscrew it and pull it apart it will look like this. There is a white plastic plate to keep the wire from being pulled out as well as the actual socket connections that come in contact with the lightbulb.
You need to remove the wires from the electric contacts by unscrewing the tiny screws that hold them in place. Sometimes a jeweler's screwdriver works best for this:
As well as unwrap the cord from the little plastic plate.
Once the wires are free you can pull them completely out and run them through your shade or fixture. This is also the point that you could cut down the cord if it was too long. You would need to use a wire cutters and the strip the insulation off the wires with a wire stripping tool.
Now you need to completely reassemble the socket the way you took it apart. Both wrapping the cord around the plastic plate and by reattaching the wiring to the electrical contacts. Remember that the white wire goes on the side marked with the “N” (for neutral) which is silver and the black wire goes on the “H” (or hot) side which has a gold post.Stuff everything back into the socket housing and then re-screw on the top part. (Even though I forgot to take a photo of it, make sure you push the metal flap back against the side of the housing so it can’t be unscrewed.
Finally reattach the final screw which hold the cord in place.
Now pull that through the fixture. (Depending on your fixture you may have screws or nuts that hold the socket in place. Mine had one on the top of the shade itself.
I hung mine finished lamp above my work bench, since I never have enough light above my projects. I absolutely love it.
Plus I can turn it on and off by plugging and unplugging it since it isn’t hardwired. It is independent of the other lights in the garage: