Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Guest Blogger Spotlight: Solana's DIY Hemp Pendant Light

I have a special treat for you design fanatics today. I'm honored to have the very talented Solana James from Solo Thais doing a guest blog post for me today! Solana is an amazing designer and DIY'er extraodriaire. If you don't already follow her blog I highly recommend it - Solana's blog is a great read. So, enough from me:) Without further adieu - here is Solana.

Hi everyone! My name is Solana and I am the creator of the design blog Solo Thais. I started Solo Thais a year ago as a way to catalog the things that inspire me throughout my day. I've been experimenting with DIY projects lately and Erin, of the beautiful blog Graceful Whimsy, has invited me to share some of these projects with you. So here is my latest project, the Hemp Pendant Light, and process on how it all came together!

In April I blogged about DIY pendant light ideas and decided to try one out myself. I chose the Hemp Pendant lights seen on Crafty Nest, and inspired by West Elms Woven Abaca lamps. I followed Heika DeHart's step-by-step instructions and the results were amazing! 

What you'll need: Deflate-able ball from Target ($3), two bottles of clear tacky glue (about $3 each), a spool of hemp string (under $5) and a hanging light cord ($15)

After drawing a circle on the bottom of the ball, I began running the string through the glue and wrapping it around the ball in random patterns avoiding the circle {this is for the opening at the bottom}. The glue quickly covered my hands and started to dry, so I dumped the glue into a container and diluted it with water which made it easier to spread over the string. After using the entire spool of string I let it sit for 3 days to allow all of the layers to dry.

When the glue dried completely, it was time to deflate and removed the ball. I filled it back up with air for the next one {or to bring to the beach}.

Because I watered down the glue, some of the glue spread between the string and dried into small, clear flakes which I had to scrape off.

I had some great suggestions by friends as to what type of bulb I should use. Almost everyone suggested an old-style filament bulb, so I compromised and got a clear round one from Home Depot, and as a backup in case this one became too hot, I grabbed some round compact florescents. So far, my clear bulb seems to be doing just fine.

My new kitchen light!!!

 I love what this light has added to our small kitchen, and I like how it compliments my birch tree painting. The shadows on the wall look like tree branches extending from the branches in the painting and the hemp adds a natural and rustic element to the room.

If anyone is going to try this and would like advice, feel free to contact me...or I'd be happy to make one for you {price to be decided}. 

Thanks for following me throughout this process! 


  1. Just perfect! I feature this article on my blog. I can't wait to start trying this out.

  2. Is the bulb attached to the sphere in any way?