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Hawaiian Koa “Marsh” Light with Cattails

We don’t know how we got the idea for this “lamp”. It is part wood sculpture and part accent light, and we had loads of fun creating it. The main idea stemmed from the fact that the grain pattern on the Koa base looked to us like a rippling pond. After we removed a patch of undesirable wood at the edge, that started to look like a rippling stream, possibly a waterfall. So, we went with it. Using assorted hand and power tools, we carefully cleaned up the perimeter of the wood, keeping the basic natural shape we had found it in. We then crafted a ‘pond’ area near the back of the light and a ‘stream’ near the front, lighting each one with a string of long-life LED strip lights and covering them with complimentary colors of stained glass. We then used another piece of Koa to create some cattails, which sway slightly in a breeze atop their copper wire stems. The Koa base and cattails are finished in a hand rubbed oil and urethane finish for a quality seal that enhances the grain. The reeds (or grasses) were crafted from small pieces of redwood and painted with an acrylic wash.

The light strips are long-life and should burn for thousands of hours. But just in case they should need to be replaced, the glass pieces that cover them are removable. In addition, to add a bit more fun, the cattails and reeds are loose, and can also be moved around and rearranged across the surface of the light. This piece is more a sculpture that adds a bit of accent light than it is an official ‘lamp’, and it looks cool whether lit or not.

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