DIY not?

We have noticed that our front light fixtures were looking pretty worn and when both of the bulbs had burned out we figured it was time to just replace the fixtures while we were at it. Saturday it was THE NICEST outside so it was perfect timing.

Here’s what the old fixtures looked like:
Warm day project: install new light fixtures at Firefly Cottage

They were once painted white, but through weather and wear they were looking pretty silver/grey in a lot of places – the paint had just worn off over time. I also didn’t love the style of these fixtures. The long stem on the bottom is purely decorative and not that appealing to me, and the design was pretty annoying in that you had to unscrew the whole thing to replace the bulb.

Of course when you’re doing DIY on an older home, you never know what you’re going to find when you open things up. The wiring was, of course, super old but still in working condition. We may eventually have all the old wiring in the house replaced but at this point, if it works and is safe, it can wait.

Warm day project: install new light fixtures at Firefly Cottage

K is just the perfect height to work on these! I handed him stuff and held on to screws and such, mostly, while he did the bulk of the work. Much easier than me teetering on a ladder balanced on the front steps, though!

Warm day project: install new light fixtures at Firefly Cottage

There was some pretty major rust happening on the hardware behind one of the fixtures. With a couple trips to Home Depot for different size screws and some well-placed applications of WD-40, we were able to get the old one out and replace it with the new one that came with the new fixture.

Warm day project: install new light fixtures at Firefly Cottage

Here you can see one new fixture, on the right, and one old, on the left. The new ones are a bit small, but for now they will do. They work and the bulbs are easy to replace! I’d like to do some more research to find out what style of fixtures would have been used in 1940 when the house was built. We could see that whatever the original lights were, they left a square shape on the face of the brick, but aside from that, I’m not sure of any details.

Warm day project: install new light fixtures at Firefly Cottage

And here we are with both fixtures replaced. Hooray! The fact that it was between 50 and 60F outside made it really pleasant to work on these, despite the fact that the fixtures we chose are SUPER poorly designed for installation. The glass panels slot in and require you to hold all four of them in place with one hand inside the fixture, while lining that whole piece up to attach it to the top piece. It’s kind of dumb and we certainly wouldn’t buy these fixtures again, but we got them set and it’s done so they’re fine.

Now that mailbox is looking even less decent! I need to do some looking around for a cool mailbox with which to replace it. Seen any neat ones?

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