Turn an old Ikea lantern and a 4x4 post into a statement piece for your front porch! This is a great way to use up scrap trim and showcase fun holiday decor.
Look at this gorgeous vintage lamp post! Would you believe this came from a wood post and the $10 Ikea BORRBY lantern? I just love me a good Ikea hack. I'm tempted to keep this on my front porch alllll year long.
The cost of this project will be significantly less if you have scrap materials lying around. I used scrap plywood, scrap bead board, scrap lattice, and leftover painting/caulking materials. One of the many perks of keeping leftover materials in the garage!
Our Ikea lantern has been collecting dust ever since I started making my own lanterns from deconstructed wine crates. This Ikea hack entails inserting a screw through each corner of the lantern while sitting on top of your post.
Materials Needed to Make Your DIY Lamp Post
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- 3/4" plywood cut to approximately 16 x 16"
- bead board cut to 13 x 13" (feel free to use more 3/4" plywood instead)
- 3/8" ogee trim (used between base levels)
- Chair rail trim (used around the perimeter right below the lantern)
- glass bead molding or inside corner molding (used between the base and the 4x4 post)
- untreated 4x4 fence post cut to 50"
- (4) 3" wood screws
- (4) 1" screws
- (4) 1x8 boards
- (8) lattice strips (OR 1/4" plywood ripped to 1.5")
- 1 1/4" brad nails
- Wood glue
- Wood filler
- Exterior latex paint (I used a charcoal color in a matte finish)
- Paint brush
- (1) Ikea BORRBY Lantern
- (1) battery powered tapered candle
- (1) dowel rod (1")
- (2) headless interior dowel screws
- (2) wood finials
- Chalkboard sign
- Chalkboard decor: chalk marker, tracing paper, graphite tracing paper
- Lamp post decor: garland, cardinal, string lights, etc.
Tools for Your Lamp Post
- Miter saw
- Table saw
- Nail gun
- Caulking gun
- Power drill
- Drill bit to match width of your screws
- 1" Forstner drill bit
Making the Lamp Post
Start by cutting the base of your post. Using a table saw, cut your 3/4" plywood to 16 x16". Then cut your bead board or second layer of plywood to 13 x 13". Glue together with wood glue and secure with nails. Then I added some leftover ogee between the two layers. These little pieces were leftover from my fireplace mantel project.
Turn your base over and mark the centermost point. Then, pre-drill four holes up through the base.
Using a miter saw, I cut my 4x4 fence post to 50". Then I screwed it into the base with 3" screws using my pre-drilled holes as a guide. IMPORTANT: make sure your post is level before you start adding trim! You can always add a shim underneath the base to even things up.
Now for my favorite part: adding trim! This is when things start to get fancy. I took four 1x8 boards and ripped two of them to 5" and two of them to 3.5". Cut them to the height of your post with your miter saw. Wrap these around your 4x4 post and secure with wood glue + brad nails.
I took lattice strips and attached them to my post in a grid formation. Once the lattice was in place, I added inside corner molding where the post meets the base. Then I added a small perimeter of chair rail trim along the top.
Cut a small square of scrap wood to cover the top of your post. I used some leftover wine crate wood. Literally any scrap pine will work as long as it's slightly larger than the size of your post. Secure to post with wood glue and nails.
Use a 1" forstner bit to drill a hole on either side of your post. Drill to a depth of about 1.5". Then, cut two dowel rods to 4". Add finials to the ends of your dowel rods using headless interior dowel screws. Insert dowels into your drilled holes after coating the tips with wood glue.
Fill in allll your nail holes with wood filler. Caulk seams between your trim. Sand everything very well for a smooth finish. Give the post 2 solid coats of paint.
Lastly, once your paint has dried, pre-drill four holes in your Ikea lantern (one at each corner). Secure to the base of your post with four metal screws about 1" in length.
Add a chalkboard sign, garland, Christmas birds, and a battery-powered tapered candle on a timer. If you don't own a Cricut, here's how I make my chalkboard designs with graphite tracing paper.
Here's how the finished sign turned out.
And that concludes the 2020 Christmas Craft Material Challenge. For more holiday inspiration, check out the other projects in the series below!