Thursday, June 21, 2007

Softening a compact fluorescent bulb's light

Does spray paint negate our compact fluorescent bulb switch? I hope not!
You might remember I bought these secondhand carriage lights to replace a few broken fixtures outside our home. Then my husband decided to go green on me and replace the clear glass candle bulbs with white, spiral compact fluorescents. After all, we leave a couple of porch lights on all night--the savings would be tremendous!

Oh, but the bulbs looked so ugly in the clear glass lanterns. Right at eye level, and most unwelcoming--especially in daylight. Would I have to throw out my new lights or replace the CFL bulbs?



My husband found a can of translucent frosting paint at Lowe's. For a few dollars, he painted the inside of each glass panel with a thin coat. It softens the light of the CFL bulb and blurs its outline during the daytime. You don't even notice the funny white shape when you knock on our front door!

I am still writing from the library. Hope to have our new internet connected at home tomorrow-- until then!

13 comments:

hsgbdmama said...

What a great idea! I love my CF's too and eventually want to get them installed outside (once our regular bulbs finally burn out -- we hardly use them) but am not thrilled with the shape either.

Gena said...

That was such a great idea! I didn't even know they made that kind of spray paint. Your fixtures look really good.

I've started using those CF's too in all the places I have had to replace bulbs. We put them first in our VERY high fixtures in the garage. I haven't had to replace them yet and it's been over 2 years.

Cheryl (Copper's Wife) said...

Great fix!!! I like the look of the painted glass in the carriage lights.

Does your community have a good plan for the used CF bulbs? I have not started making the switch to them here yet because of the problem of disposal. Any hints?

Alison said...

Perfect compromise and it looks great! We used that same paint to frost the "porthole" window by our front door...I love the shape so didn't want to cover with a regular curtain and the custom options were out of my budget's league. We left a small diamond in the center clear so we can peek if we want, but the angle keeps the casual looker from seeing much of anything inside the house.

Mary said...

"Brilliant" idea!
Thanks for a really great and useful tip.

PiggyBank Raider said...

Great fix! We're gradually switching all of our lights to CFs. The only ones I refuse to switch are the ones in the bathroom where I apply my makeup. I need a softer light there.

Growing in Grace (Nicole) said...

What a great solution!

thehomespunheart said...

Terrific idea! I noticed that the CFL bulbs are not as nice to look at too and this is a great solution!

Tracy said...

YIPPEE.. another use for spray paint (my latest addiction). These look terrific and what a smart husband you have!

Valerie said...

Awesome idea!

Day by Day said...

Excellent idea!
So enjoy your blog. Check it every day. Love the "freshness" of it!

Susan said...

Another great idea!! Thanks for sharing!

Hugs & Blessings,
Susan

Lisa of Longbourn said...

Your lanterns look beautiful! I'm really enchanted.
To God be all glory,
Lisa of Longbourn