Potted Light Bulb Lamp: Easy to "Grow"; Provides Its Own Light

Potted Light Bulb Lamp: Easy to "Grow"; Provides Its Own Light

A while back while ogling property in the historic district of Savannah, GA, I saw some interesting lamps sitting on the window ledges of a building occupied by the Savannah College of Art and Design. Although I don’t know how the lamps were made, they were easy to reproduce. This is my interpretation of them. Note, some wiring experience would be helpful with assembly, but, still, it’s an easy project. I found the electrical supples at Menard’s. In all, one lamp cost about 11 bucks, not including the tools, which were on hand.


1 - 4" clay pot

decorative rock available at any garden or aquarium supply store

1 - porcelain keyless socket (1/8" IP thread socket)

1 - 2" long steel nipple (1/8 IP thread)

2 - small ring lugs (Optional, but for safety reasons, recommended.)

1 - 6' snap-in-socket cord set with switch (I bought this because I couldn’t find just a cord with an in-line thumb wheel on off switch. Note the third step of the procedure list.)

1 - 25 watt clear round light bulb (Or light bulb of your choice.)


Phillips screw driver

Side cutters

Wire strippers

Ring lug connector/crimper


1/4" carbide drill bit


1. Soak clay pot in warm water for about an hour. Soaking it will make the clay more "drill- able."

2. Dry off pot and drill hole about 3/4 inch or so from bottom edge.

3. Using side cutters, cut socket off snap-in-socket cord.

4. Feed cord through hole in pot.

5. Feed cord through nipple.

6. Using phillips screw driver, dismantle porcelain socket.

7. Screw nipple onto bottom piece of socket.

8. Feed center gasket of socket onto cord.

9. Split cord and strip ends with wire stripper.

10. Using ring lug connector, crimp on ring lugs to stripped ends.

11. Attach ring lugs to socket using phillips screws on bottom of socket.

12. Re-position flange over bottom of socket.

13. Screw nipple assembly onto bottom of socket. Be careful not to apply too much force, thereby crushing the wire, or you may create a short.

14. Centering socket fixture in the middle of the pot, pour in pebbles.

15. Screw in light bulb.


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mattpennig on Dec 12, 2006:

This isn't a bad idea. Perhaps the final photo is unflattering, but I'm not too keen on the lightbulb itself. I would rather opt for a frosted bulb, or take it one step further, and find/make a tiny lampshade with a plant pattern on it.

Thanks for the post!

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