Pottery Barn Knockoff Rope Knot Lamp
Oh my goodness, I am so excited about this darn lamp! It is such a close replica to the Pottery Barn Rope Knot Lamp that I am astounded each and every time that I walk by it. But my DIY lamp cost me just $25, compared to the $245 PB version. Can you believe that? A savings of $220 just for some elbow grease?! Yes, please…sign this girl up! Wanna make one of your own? It’s not anywhere near as challenging as you might think. In fact, I made mine in an afternoon and was basking in its glow by that evening.
lamp repair kit (I got mine from Walmart for $7)
4 inch diameter hard foam ball
25 feet of 3/4 inch rope
12 inches of 1/2 inch copper plumbing pipe (could also use painted PVC pipe)
JB Weld or super glue of your choice
drill and bit
copper tube cutter (mine is similar to this one)
The knot on this lamp is a monkey fist, and is a nautical knot used for weighting the end of a throwing rope. While some knot tying experience might come in handy, you can find plenty of tutorials on how to tie a monkey fist knot on YouTube. If you’ve never tied a monkey fist, my suggestion would be to try it out on a smaller diameter rope first, maybe even just a rounded shoelace with a marble. As you progress, you’ll find it much easier to use a larger diameter rope. I really recommend watching an instructional video or two before attempting.
Start by wrapping your rope around one hand into four circles that are slightly larger than the diameter of the foam ball.
The next four circles will be 90 degrees off of the original four circles. Your first circle in this set will go in between your index and middle fingers and wrap around the back horizontally. The following circles will work from top to bottom horizontally.
Place the ball inside your existing eight wraps. Now there are four more wraps to go.
These last four wraps are going 90 degrees off of both sets of your existing wraps and they will end up going left to right in a vertical fashion. These wraps will need to go underneath the first set of four wraps and over the top of the second set of four.
You should end up with something looking like this:
Don’t worry if it does not look picture perfect at this time. There is still quite a bit of work to do. In order to finish the monkey’s fist knot, we will need to tighten and dress it up, but we need to run the lamp wiring at this point.
Choose what you think is the best looking side and keep the long end of the rope on the bottom. This will the front of your lamp.
Pushing your rope to the side just enough to fit a drill and bit in between, drill a 1/2 inch hole straight through to the bottom of your ball.
Insert your copper plumbing pipe into the hole. (Quick tip: if your copper is a bit dull looking, give it a quick scrub with an SOS pad and it will shine like new.)
Making sure to keep the plug on the bottom of the lamp (the end that has the long end of the rope hanging), run the lamp wire through the copper pipe. I chose to tape my wire to the top while I was working so that it would stay put. I highly suggest that you do that as well if you are working alone.
Now it is time to tighten the knot. Beginning at the point where you started tying the knot (you want all of your excess rope to be coming towards the long end of the rope on the base), hold tight and follow the path of the rope pulling the slack. Go slowly and know that you may have to repeat this step. If hand strength is an issue, you can use a screwdriver to help pry / pull out some of the slack. Be patient, this step will take a while, but it is necessary to get all of the slack out. It is better to tighten more than once than it is to risk warping the knot by pulling too much rope out. As you tighten you’re going to dress the knot as well by ensuring that all of the strands are even and aligned correctly. When finished, the knot should be hard and it should be difficult to move each individual strand.
At this point, you can decide how long you want your pipe to be and cut accordingly. I used a tube cutter, but a Dremel or a hacksaw would also work well. If you do not use a tube cutter, be extra careful that you don’t cut the wire that is running through the pipe. Do a dry run by setting the fixture on top, as well as your lamp shade. I ended up cutting my pipe down to just about 8 inches tall, leaving about two inches exposed above my ball.
Once the pipe is the desired length, it’s time to wire the fixture. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and double check to make sure that it is working before gluing the fixture to the pipe. I am a big fan of the quick dry JB Weld (not sponsored, just love it). Allow ample time to dry.
Wrap two circles around the bottom of the monkey fist to serve as a lamp base. Be sure to continually check for level, adjusting as necessary. Use hot glue towards the inside to keep the wraps together. Once you have your base, cut off excess rope (I used garden shears) and coat the ends of the cut with hot glue to keep it from fraying and tuck under the base.
Cut off the excess rope at the starting point and tuck inside the knot. If you have any bare spots where your foam ball shows through, fill with small fibers from rope and glue in if needed. I was able to just tuck them in, no need for glue.
And if you made it this far, you now have a brand new Pottery Barn Knockoff Rope Knot Lamp! It took a little work, but the savings more than makes up for it! *Please note that the $245 Pottery Barn price includes the lamp base, shade, tax and shipping charge.
Isn’t is beautiful? I just love it so much! One more beauty shot…
Big shout out to my super cool hubby for taking such awesome pictures and keeping me company! Love ya!
Linked at Savvy Southern Style, A Stroll Thru Life, Domestically Speaking, House on the Way, Carolyn’s Homework, Ginger Snap Crafts, DIY by Design, The Everyday Home, Seasoned Homemaker, The Newlywed Pilgrimage , Practically Functional, Serenity Now