A few weeks ago, I went to an estate sale and bought two matching table lamps for three bucks. Here's one of the two, before. (Click on any of the images to get a closer look.)
They were made of milk glass and wood pieces. Only one had a shade. They needed to be rewired, the wood parts had lost most of their finish, and the milk glass was really grubby.
First off, I took the lamps apart, gave the milk glass parts a bath, and rubbed the wood parts with paste wood refinishing stuff (I can't remember what it's really called, but it looks like brown shoe polish, and probably is).
Then I reassembled the lamps with new wiring.
I tried to find two shades that were of the same size and shape as the one remaining original that I had. (It was not in great shape.) No good. I could have had them custom made, for a fortune. They just are not selling drum shades that are of that size and dimension anymore. So I went to Wal-Mart. There I found two matching shades that were okay, though quite different. I took them home, fully intending to return them if I did not like the look.
Here's my "after" picture. I love these lamps. I really do. I didn't expect to LOVE them.I know that shade is not authentic to mid century design, like the original, but I just simply like it.
These lamps go great in our bedroom.
Of course they now cost a lot more than $1.50 apiece. The shades were $15 each, the wiring maybe another $3 each. Still, they were under $20 each. I think they were worth it.
I'd much rather fix up something old and make it useful again, than buy something new.
I'd love to know who made the glass. It could be anybody. The glass is not of particularly high quality mold, so I doubt it was a "name". Still, it would be cool to find out it's Westmoreland.