If you're on a budget and trying to make the best of what you've got available, then it's time to get creative, especially with lighting, as you can spend a pretty penny on suitable lights for a new place. This hack uses a number of table lamps situated high up on a glass wall shelf to generate enough light to illuminate a room.
Marikorose from Athens, Greece, was trying to find the right lighting solution for her bathroom. She didn't want to start hacking lights together, which is why she opted for this way of amalgamating lights to create enough illumination for her bathroom. These lights replace bare fluorescent light tubes, which can be pretty dreary. They are positioned right above the sink, and sort of mimic a vanity bar. Any type of frosted glass shelf will work for this hack, but it's important to use that type glass, because it will diffuse the glow of the lamps.
1. Mount two IKEA Ljusdal shelves side by side so that they touch and are flush to the wall. Linjal shelves will also work. If you're using them in the bathroom, mounting them over the sink is a good idea. Otherwise, this will also work in a living room or above a workstation. They could be used like diffuse spotlights.
2. Buy enough IKEA Grono lamps to fill up the shelf. The 31" Ljusdal can take quite a few, but about 6 make sense.
3. Instead of using traditional bulbs or CFL bulbs, use LED bulbs to make the whole setup more energy efficient.
4. The lamps will need to be wired together to act as one in order for this to work. Or you could find a way to discretely place a power strip nearby, but ultimately that would mean a lot of wires. The lamps were placed upside down, so most of their glow goes downward to the place you want to illuminate. You'll have to be careful if you use CFL bulbs since this will reduce their product life.
5. Play with the setting of the lamps a bit, to ensure that they are optimally placed. This might now work for all situations, but it will definitely make an interesting lighting solution.
You can also decorate the Grono lamps. We like the way that Claire Chauvin used old film negatives to customize the look of the Gronos.
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(via Ikeahackers, images by Marikorose and Claire Chauvin)