The Lifestlye Blog of "HaM"
Project “LA” stands for Project Lindsey Adelman and she is pretty awesome. Lindsey Adelman is an amazing designer in Manhattan who specializes in lighting. Her fixtures are so modern and unique that each piece can range from $15,000 to $30,000. (Click here if you want to see more of her work) She is even MORE amazing because she made a DIY kit for people like me who cannot afford a custom made chandelier.
Look at how amazingly beautiful this chandelier looks in this designer’s home?
First off, let me say that I have NO experience whatsoever in ANY of the following things and was able to do it so I could do it, so can you. I have never wired electrical before this (although my dad is an electrician and I have seen him strip wires all the time). There is a DIY Kit that you can buy directly from Grand Brass here for $143 plus shipping, but I chose to actually order the parts myself since I knew I wanted to hard wire the chandelier to my ceiling instead of plugging it in. The following are the first half of steps I took. I know it seems overwhelming, but it truly is like building Legos with wiring on the inside.
You should first download the instruction manual from the LA website before even purchasing anything to make sure this is something doable. I printed and read all the instructions making sure I understood how to do it prior to even buying all the parts. You can download the instructions here and click on “ABOUT” to download instructions.
I bought everything on the list EXCEPT for the plug and extra sockets since I did not want the double socket for my chandelier. I ADDED a brass canopy so it can be hard-wired to the ceiling and a slip ring to make sure the canopy stays in place. I also only bought 2 feet of roped wire because I knew I did not need the extra wire if it is directly hanging from the ceiling. Other than that, I bought everything off the list. I ended up spending about $150 with shipping. These are HEAVY and the price of shipping is pretty expensive. I actually saved money buying all the parts separately and would highly recommend it. The only downside is that it is time consuming to put all the parts in the cart to purchase. If you want to see a full list of my EXACT purchase, click here and it will take you back to the sneak peak where I took a snapshot of all the part numbers and quantities.
Checking the shipment is important because Grand Brass allows only 7 days to notify them of problems. Once I had all the parts, I built a prototype of what my chandelier would look like before wiring anything. This was truly the fun part and allowed me to see how this whole thing comes together before all the crazy wiring. Here is what mine looked like after the first try.
I think this is the part that took the LONGEST amount of time because I wanted to make sure that everything was correct and I don’t blow up or short-circuit my house at the end of this whole thing. I followed the diagrams in the instructions and cut the wires according to the recommended lengths. I found them to be pretty generous and had extra wire at the end and plenty to spare for mistakes. I found it easiest to start at each socket and then wiring the electrical to the corresponding hub. This first pictures shows how I laid out my parts with the instructions so I had some idea of what I was doing. What you don’t see in the picture is that the ENTIRE chandelier is still attached to each other outside of this frame so I only took apart the “branch” I was working on so I would be able to keep the shape and not get confused.
Next, I stripped the wire down with a pair of scissors. I watched my dad do this growing up and had an idea of how to do it without a wire stripper. My dad owns a wire stripper but he was too lazy to use and I was too lazy to borrow it from him. It all worked out and I did not have any trouble at all. Once I stripped the wire down, I twisted it and matched WHITE to SILVER and BLACK to GOLD. This is really important because you don’t want to short-circuit anything.
Once I finished, I snaked the other end through all the necessary components and all the way up until i got to the first hub. I did this same process to the other sockets until I reached that first hub where all the wires meet.
Once all the wires reached the hub, I stripped the ends of those wires and matched the colors together. I took all the white wires, added it to a new white wire that was to go to the central hub, and then twisted all of it together. I did the same for the black wires. You can see in the image below that there is only 1 black and 1 white wire that will continue to the main hub. Once together, I added the twisted on the caps and used electrical tape to bind it making sure no wires were exposed to the metal. I did not take a picture of this but I stuffed everything back into the small hub and started with the other side where the wires will meet at the main hub.
I continued what I did in step 4 above and snaked the wires up until I finally got all the wires into the central hub as seen below. I am not going to lie, it is HARD to snake the wires to the main hub because the pipes are smaller and you are jamming a lot of wires and tightening all the parts as you go so it gets a bit difficult. I made it MORE difficult on myself by doing this COMPLETELY alone so not having those extra pair of hands made it 2 times more difficult. I would recommend having someone there to help.
Next I stripped the wires down and twisted them together.
Afterwards, I snaked the yellow fabric wire through. I cut off the part of the fabric to expose the black and white wires underneath. These are thinner so it is more difficult to strip. I burned the outside rope it would stop from fraying. I twisted EVERYTHING together afterwards according to color.
I twisted a cap onto each color and electrical taped around it once again to make sure it would not expose any wiring. Once completed, I jammed everything into the central hub and closed it all up.
NOW it is FINALLY ready for installation! I’ve been waiting on my wonderful dad to feel better (he’s been sick) so he can come over and help me install this chandelier to my ceiling! There is no junction box already in my ceiling so I need his expertise to install this. I will post the details of that on PART 2 of this DIY Lindsey Adelman Chandelier.