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Materials: HEMMA light cord/light bulb set, IDEALISK cheese grater, electrical tape

Description: I was inspired to make myself a new desk lamp by the lighting design of a trendy Mexican food restaurant in Berlin. I had always been annoyed by the shortness (and boring design) of the cheap desk lamp I have had since my dorm days, so I decided to bring a little fun into my workspace with this cheese grater lamp.

I bought the HEMMA light cord and CFL light bulb combo pack (in black) and the IDEALISK cheese grater for this project (the cheese grater in the version pictured is my old cheese grater, but the design works just as well with Ikea’s IDEALISK cheese grater, which is exactly the same size, shape, and weight). I originally intended to drill a slot and a hole in the handle for the cord but was lacking a drill that was powerful enough. Instead, I fed the cord through the cheese grater and looped it around the handle, then secured the loop with black electrical tape. Right now the cord loop balances stably on the handle, but if you find that too flimsy you can use more electrical tape to bind the bottom of the loop to the grater. Install on the ceiling so that the lamp hangs at a comfortable height above your workspace, and you have a great and funky new light source that cost 11 bucks and took 10 minutes to build!

This lamp is probably better suited thematically for a kitchen, but since I don’t have my own kitchen, that was not an option. I love cooking and LOVED this design, so I deemed this appropriate for my desk. Plus it provides just the right amount and angle of light for working (and is a great conversation piece).

~ K McF, California