For the Record

Ever look at that stack of old records and wonder just what the heck you are keeping them around for?

Away went the record player and in came CD's. Then, the CD player left and now you have a digital music player that contains all your music. Don't fret, and definitely do not throw those LP's in the trash because you can make some great lights. What better way to add some light to your house and hold on to those distant memories?

Materials needed:

1 LP record
glass or metal bowl, smaller than record
1.5 inch drill bit
1 hardwired or swag-type paper lantern light kit (can be found inexpensively at World Market)
1 standard base CFL light bulb (I like the candelabra style with this light)
*DO NOT use incandescent blub. The heat will damage the record.

How To:

Remove top rack from oven and lower the second rack to the lowest position. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Turn bowl upside down and place record on the bowl and place in oven for 30-40 seconds.

The record will begin to bend and melt around the bowl after a very short while. (Please don't mind the messy oven, I've been making lots of bread lately.) With oven mitts on, remove the bowl and record from the oven. Place on a heat safe surface and form the record to the outside of the bowl. Let cool, allowing the record to harden.

Invert the bowl and place the record inside. Return to oven for another 30-40 seconds. When it looks like the record is soft again, press on the center (still using oven mitts) pushing the record into the bowl. This will form it to the inside size. Remove from oven and let cool for about 30 seconds. Remove from bowl and let cool completely.

Using the 1.5 inch drill bit and an electric screwdriver or drill press, drill a hole through the center of the record.

Install the light kit to the record using manufacturer's instructions. This only consists of unscrewing a large plastic nut, inserting the light through the record's hole, and re-screwing the nut. Very simple.

Install hardwired kit, or hang plug-in swag and screw in light bulb. Turn on the light and show off your handy work.

David is a contributing writer for FOLK.


  1. Looks great. I've always wondered how to melt these.

    Are there any fumes from the softening record?


  2. Hi Gertie. There are no fumes or smells when softening the record. It is a safe, and really easy project. Don't leave it in the oven for too long though, 30-40 seconds is more than enough time.

  3. Who thinks of these things?! Who wakes up one morning and says, "I'm going to melt a record in the oven and turn it into a lamp?! That has got to be the most innovative thing I have ever seen! Great idea!

  4. Thanks Laura! It was a lot of fun to make. Glad you enjoyed it. Also, if you just shape the record it makes a great fruit or chip bowl.


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