Convert an Old Chandelier into a Swag Lamp in 6 Steps

  • 2-3 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 20-100
What You'll Need
Swag lamp kit
Wire stripper
Electrical cable wire caps
Cord cover or decorative chain
2 ceiling hooks

If you want to install a chandelier in your home and don't want to run wire up into the ceiling or install a new breaker, you'll need to convert your new or old chandelier into a swag lamp so that it can use a standard plug-in cord and be plugged into an electrical outlet. Converting a standard chandelier into a swag lamp involves no complicated wiring or tools. Kits to convert chandeliers to swag lamps are sold at most home improvement stores, and include everything that you'll need to make the conversion.

Step 1 - Install the Electrical Cord

Using your wire strippers, strip about 1 inch of the wire cover coating from each of the two wires that lead out of the chandelier. Take notice of any special markings on the wires or the coloring of the wires to make sure that you connect the correct wires to the new electrical cord. Connect the wires for the chandelier to the electrical cord that came with your swag lamp kit. Use wire caps or electrical tape to secure the connections and insulate them properly.

Step 2 - Install the Cord Cover

Place the cord cover over the electrical wires and make sure that none of the electrical wires are visible. You will need to thread the cord through the chain or covering that came with your swag lamp kit.

Step 3 - Install the Ceiling Hooks

Locate a stud or ceiling joist and screw the hook into a stud or joist so the weight of the chandelier will not cause the hook to simply pull out of the ceiling. Install a second ceiling hook in the ceiling closest to the wall where the electrical cord plug will go into the outlet.

Step 4 - Hang the Chandelier

gold embossed chandelier

Hang the chandelier from the first ceiling hook you installed and make sure the hook adequately supports the weight of the chandelier.

Step 5 - Drape the Electrical Wire

Before plugging the chandelier in, drape the excess cord, chain, or cover over the second ceiling hook. When draping the cord over the hook, make sure that the chain or cover does not hang too low.

Step 6 - Plug in the Electrical Cord

Plug in the electrical cord to the outlet and test the chandelier by turning it on. If the chandelier light does not turn on, you'll need to check the connections you made from the chandelier to the new swag lamp kit electrical cord. Make sure that you connected the wires correctly matching colors or matching positive to positive and negative to negative.