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Revamping Your Decor: Can Your Brass Lamps Benefit from Painting or Refinishing?

Brass lamps are a classic and timeless addition to any room, and their popularity has only increased in recent years thanks to the trend of brass and other metal finishes in home decor. However, as design trends change, you may be wondering if your brass lamps can be updated to fit with a more modern aesthetic. Can brass lamps be painted or refinished to give them new life?

In this article, we’ll explore the options for updating your brass lamps and maintaining their beauty for years.

spray paint your brass lamps

Can Brass Lamps be Painted?

The simple answer is yes, brass lamps can be painted. Brass is a durable and versatile material that can easily be painted to achieve a fresh and updated look. Painting your brass lamps is a great way to customize them to your decor and add a pop of color to your room. However, there are a few things to keep in mind before you begin painting your brass lamps.

Types of Paint to Use

When selecting paint for your brass lamps, it’s important to choose a paint that is formulated for use on metal surfaces. Specialty metal spray paint or enamel paint is a great option for painting brass lamps. These types of paint can be found in most hardware stores and come in a variety of colors and finishes.

Choosing a paint color and finish will depend on the design of the room and the preferences of the homeowner. If you’re looking for a modern and sleek look, consider using glossy or matte black paint. Alternatively, a metallic gold or bronze paint can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your brass lamps.

How to Prep the Lamp?

Prepping your brass lamp is an important step in painting it. The lamp’s surface should be free of dirt, dust, or any other contaminants that might hinder paint adhesion. Start by cleaning the lamp with a cloth and a mild soap solution. Make sure to get into all of the nooks and crannies of the lamp to remove all dirt and grime.

After the lamp has been cleaned, sand the surface with a fine-grit sandpaper to rough up the surface. This will create a texture that the paint can adhere to. Make sure to wipe off any sanding dust after completing the step.

Before applying the paint, use painter’s tape and paper to cover any areas of the lamp that you don’t want to paint, such as the light socket or cord. This will ensure that the paint is applied only to the areas that require it.

Painting your brass lamps can be a simple and effective way to update their look and match them to your decor. Here are the collected materials and steps to paint your brass lamps.

Materials Needed For Painting Brass Lamps:

  • Brass lamps
  • High-quality metal spray paint or enamel paint
  • Painter’s tape and paper
  • Sandpaper (fine-grit)
  • Cloth
  • Mild soap solution

Steps to Paint Brass Lamps:

1. Remove any electrical parts from the lamp and set them aside in a safe place. This includes light bulbs, sockets, and cords.

2. Clean the lamp thoroughly to remove any dirt, grime, or grease. Use a mild soap solution and a soft cloth to ensure the surface of the lamp is entirely clean.

3. Sand the surface of the lamp with fine-grit sandpaper until it is entirely rough to the touch. This will help to remove any existing coatings and also enable the paint to adhere better to the brass surface.

4. After sanding, clean the brass lamp with a cloth and remove any sanding dust that may be leftover.

5. Apply painter’s tape and paper to the parts of the lamp that you don’t want the paint to go, such as the light socket, cord or any other parts of the lamp you want to preserve.

6. Use a high-quality metal spray paint or enamel paint to paint the top of your brass lamp. You can start by applying a light and even layer of paint over the brass surface of the lamp. Do not apply too much paint to avoid drips and uneven surfaces.

7. Wait for the first layer of paint to dry completely and apply another coat as needed. Most metal spray paints may require additional coats to achieve the desired finish.

8. Once the paint is dry, remove the painter’s tape and paper carefully and reattach any electrical parts that you removed.

Your newly painted brass lamp is now ready to display and enjoy in your home. It is essential to let the paint dry completely for at least 24 hours before touching or using the lamp. With proper care and maintenance, your newly painted brass lamp will last for years to come.

Can Brass Lamps be Refinished?

If painting your brass lamps doesn’t suit your tastes, another option is to refinish them. Refinishing brass lamps can give them a fresh and updated look while still preserving their natural beauty. In this section, we’ll discuss what it means to refinish a brass lamp, as well as the steps involved in the process.

Explanation of What it Means to Refinish a Brass Lamp

When a brass lamp is refinished, its original finish is removed to restore its natural beauty and give it a new look. The brass is often sanded or buffed to remove any scratches, dings, or discolorations, and then a new finish is applied. Refinishing a brass lamp can restore it to its original glory and make it a centerpiece in any room.

Steps to Refinish a Brass Lamp:

Refinishing a brass lamp requires some time and effort, but the process is simple and can be done by anyone who is willing to take on the challenge. Here are the steps to refinish a brass lamp:

1. Remove any electrical parts from the lamp and set them aside in a safe place.

2. Clean the lamp thoroughly to remove any dirt, grime, or grease. Use a mild soap solution and a soft cloth to clean the surface of the lamp.

3. Disassemble the lamp into its individual parts, if possible. This will make it easier to reach all of the surfaces during the refinishing process.

4. Use sandpaper to remove the old finish from the brass. Start with a coarse grit sandpaper and work your way up to finer grit sandpaper until the surface is smooth and free of old finish.

5. Clean the lamp again to remove any sanding dust from the surface.

6. Apply a new finish to the brass. There are several types of finishes that can be used on brass lamps, including clear lacquer, oil-rubbed bronze, satin nickel, and brass. Choose a finish that complements your design style and apply it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

7. Reassemble the lamp and restore any electrical parts that were removed in step one.


Painting or refinishing brass lamps is a great way to update their look and customize them to your decor. When painting your brass lamps, make sure to choose the right type of paint and prepare the surface appropriately. With the proper care and maintenance, your painted brass lamps will continue to look great for years. Whether you choose to paint or refinish your lamps, or simply maintain their original beauty, these timeless pieces are sure to add style, warmth, and sophistication to any room.