Lamps in the home are essential lighting elements. Converting a ceramic or heirloom metal teapot into a table lamp adds a stylish statement to home decor that can be elegant, whimsical or fun and funky. Lamps are simple to make with a few tools and a lamp-making kit that can be purchased at home improvement or craft stores. Different manufacturers of lamp kits include more or less hardware. Make sure you get what you need. Or recycle the working parts of a damaged lamp and a beloved teapot.
Choose a 3/8-inch drill bit that is appropriate for the type of teapot being used: a tile bit to drill through ceramics or a high-speed steel bit to drill through metals.
Find the centre of the lamp base by making an "X" mark on the bottom. Use the drill to make a hole at the centre of the X large enough to accommodate the lamp rod through the centre of the teapot lamp base.
Use a measuring tape to determine the length of the lamp rod. The top of the rod should extend 1/2 inch taller than the top of the teapot. With a hacksaw, cut the lamp rod.
Slip the lamp rod through the hole in the bottom of the teapot and secure it with a nut, washer and bolt. Countersink the washer and nut for a flat base. Add feet to the lamp base if unable to countersink the washer and nut.
Thread the lamp cord through the lamp rod through the bottom of the teapot. Leave the plug extending from the bottom of the base. Pull the lamp cord through at least 3 inches and secure the lamp rod with a locknut.
Screw the neck, large end down, onto the lamp rod.
Place the harp bottom onto the lamp rod. Thread the socket cap onto the rod and tighten it.
Separate the cord at the top of the teapot about 2 inches down. Use a sharp knife or wire strippers to remove 1/2 inch insulation from each wire. Tie a knot in the cord to keep it from slipping back through the lamp rod.
Follow the instructions in the lamp kit to find out which wire is hot and which is neutral. Connect the wires according to instructions.
Attach the lampshade harp, per the instructions in the lamp kit.
Add a shade to complete the teapot lamp.
A lamp kit typically includes the following pieces: locknut, lamp rod, harp bottom, socket cap, terminal screws, sleeves, socket interior, socket shell, harp, threaded stud, finial and instructions. A lightweight teapot may need to be weighted with sand, marbles, lead fishing weights or plaster of Paris.