I need a cover for this bare light bulb
June 25, 2020 3:20 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a wall sconce shade for this lightbulb that's in my enclosed porch. Picture here. I feel like something has to exist to cover this without it looking silly, but I cannot find it and feel like I'm missing a Google search term or something.

I want some kind of covering that makes this look like a wall sconce, not like a table lamp that's been rotated 90'. This is close to what I want, but the clip is assuming the bulb is vertical, not sticking out of the wall horizontally. I really don't want to DIY this if I don't have to, nor do I really want to replace the light fixture entirely.
posted by Sparky Buttons to Home & Garden (19 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You could get that and just twist the wires 90 degrees and I think it would work fine.

I'd replace the bulb with something that gets less hot than that incandescent, if those rubber wire parts are going to be touching it.
posted by fritley at 3:34 PM on June 25, 2020 [3 favorites]

Your fixture is called a lampholder according to my local hardware store. Maybe searching for lampholder cover or sconce might help but I suspect that you're not going to find anything because it's the kind of thing that's installed when you don't want to actually search for a light fixture right now and need to put something up that'll pass code (I have 2 of these in my basement and 1 in my garage for this very reason). Like the cover you linked to is a $25 cover for a $6 (Canadian) light fixture, at that point you're likely better off just buying an outdoor sconce that you like.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 4:13 PM on June 25, 2020 [2 favorites]

the fixture looks like it is just screwed into the siding, with the wiring exposed & stapled to the ceiling. no outlet box or anything. Most houses would have a wall box for the sconce, with interior wiring. Where does the wire go & how do you turn it on/off?

As it looks you could remove the whole thing and leave just a couple holes to spackle. And you could buy almost any fixture you prefer and wire it up/screw it into the siding or the ceiing just a crudely. Is this a rental? Are you handy with work like this? (pretty simple as it goes).
posted by TDIpod at 5:08 PM on June 25, 2020 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: This is not a rental, but a house that was flipped during the last real estate bubble, so rental-quality fixtures, generally. The wire that goes across the ceiling goes to the outside flood lights. I'm not handy at all at this kind of thing, and live alone, so I was hoping someone made a lightshade I can just pop on to the bulb. It's in a tiny enclosed porch, and I think I've used that light twice the entire time I've been here? So my willingness to spend time/energy is pretty low. It turns on/off by the pull cord at the bottom. Thanks for your help so far!
posted by Sparky Buttons at 5:29 PM on June 25, 2020

You are looking for a "clip on lamp shade". You want one where the clip is in the middle, and surrounds the bulb. The one you have pictured is for a bulb that is facing upwards from the fixture, so the shade clips on to the side of the bulb. You want one that clips on to the top of the bulb, whether the bulb protrudes from the wall or the ceiling. Google "Home Depot clip on lamp shade" and the first shade, for $8.37, is an example of what you want. Many local hardware stores carry this kind of clip on shade.

I apologize. I know what you want, but I am not savvy enough to link examples.
posted by KayQuestions at 5:41 PM on June 25, 2020 [4 favorites]

Light bulb shade brings up this and this
Could also do something like this with a more decorative Edison style led.
posted by Crystalinne at 6:15 PM on June 25, 2020

Best answer: How committed are you to a single bulb? You can get an electrical plug thingum that screws into the socket and plug in festive LED string lights, saving a little electricity and enhancing the overall fun atmosphere. This thingum is jointed and bends, you could have 2 bulbs and shades. LED bulbs have come down in price, save lots of electricity, don't generate heat.
posted by theora55 at 6:20 PM on June 25, 2020 [2 favorites]

Best answer: The wire clip on the example you linked to won't actually work with your current bulb. These ugly plastic ones on eBay have the configuration you need.
posted by bonobothegreat at 8:13 PM on June 25, 2020

Google shopping seems far too focussed on selling new fixtures but if KayQuestion's suggestion doesn't pan out, [Clip on half shade] brings up a decent number of image results to follow up on. Most seem to have the wrong configuration but I would bet that rotating the loops 90 degrees with pliers wouldn't wreck most of the example I see.
posted by bonobothegreat at 8:30 PM on June 25, 2020

I think the search term you want is:

wall sconce clip on half shade

It is half of a cylinder so that it fits up against the wall. Unfortunately a little spendy. A new wall fixture might be cheaper, but if you don't want to do any rewiring, this will do the trick. I think it is made for a vertical bulb, but should work if you screw the bulb through the inside hoop.
posted by JackFlash at 8:41 PM on June 25, 2020 [1 favorite]

Would you be interested in a cover that is part of the bulb?
Or a bulb that is frosted or painted at the end?
posted by calgirl at 8:51 PM on June 25, 2020

I don't have a shade recommendation but if you can't find something you like another option would be a half silvered bulb. Dresses it up a bit and cuts the glare.
posted by Mitheral at 8:52 PM on June 25, 2020 [1 favorite]

Those spin lights work good but you need one with a pull chain. And you'd want to be careful to not damage that unprotected NMD coming out of the fixture.
posted by Mitheral at 8:54 PM on June 25, 2020

I'd use a silver bowl bulb. That and a cute pull chain would fix you right up.
posted by BoscosMom at 9:35 PM on June 25, 2020

I have this one, which I love. If you want to search for others that are similar, try "clip on bulb shade"
posted by Mchelly at 10:18 PM on June 25, 2020

Best answer: Re-configure bulb with a socket adapter, like this Flexible/Adjustable extender, or this Flex 90 Degree Extender/ Adjustable 180 Degree Base Lamp Holder, & use the clip-on sconce you like.
posted by Iris Gambol at 11:18 PM on June 25, 2020 [4 favorites]

Sorry, I didn't see the shade that you you linked in the original post was the same as I suggested. That shade is made for a vertical bulb but it should also work for a horizontal bulb. Unscrew the bulb from the fixture. Push the bulb up into the clip with the screw end first and then push the screw end out through the back hoop. The back hoop then sits on the back of the bulb and the front hoop sits on the front end of the bulb. Then screw the bulb back into the fixture, already attached to the shade. The clip will slip as you rotate the bulb so the shade stays upright.
posted by JackFlash at 7:37 AM on June 26, 2020

Response by poster: I had no idea you could buy anything like socket adaptors! I wanted to add fairy lights in there anyway but was limited because I didn't have an electrical outlet, so theora55's polarized adaptor thing is perfect.

thanks all !
posted by Sparky Buttons at 10:47 AM on June 26, 2020 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Here's what it looks like now -- huge improvement.

Thanks again, all!
posted by Sparky Buttons at 8:01 PM on July 3, 2020 [1 favorite]

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