How to add a light fixture anywhere (without electricity!) from Thrifty Decor Chick Leave a comment

This post is all about adding lighting…where you didn’t think you could! I
used this easy hack on my wall of office built ins. 

If you remember, in our old house it took me forEVER to find the lights I
wanted. I finally
went with outdoor lights
because everything else was crazy expensive:

DIY built ins with lights above

They worked perfectly! 

Thankfully now that sconces have become more popular, they are much more
affordable. There are a ton more options now too. 

This post may contain affiliate links for
your convenience. 

I wanted that look again, and found a brass and black sconce I love that
I’ve used before — you can see it here in
our mud/laundry room
Lights without electricity
I used this little hack on that light too! You can find
the black sconces here — they are affordable and you get two in the order. 
Usually when I build bookcases, I have electrical run to the lights to the
header. This time,
because I know of this lighting trick…I didn’t pay for that part. There are pros and cons to this trick so
stay tuned for those! 

Bookcase lights without electricity

It would have been really difficult to wire them on these skinny shelves, so
this trick worked great! Make sure to check out the post to see how I made
those specific sconces work! (Hint: it was even easier than what I’m sharing

This time, I needed to secure them to the sconce because it was facing down.
** I’ve found an even easier and more secure way to do this so I’ll share
that option first!

I discovered this little hack when working on our
laundry and mud room makeover. When we had the cabinets moved, I later noticed that some task lighting
would be nice on the new counter. I would have run electrical before I
started this project, but I hadn’t planned on adding sconces. 

Enter these pretty sconces with the puck lights!: 

lighting black sconce above cabinets

This time though, the sconces had a shade that narrowed a bit too much at
the top, so I knew the pucks would probably not fit. 

I noticed something when I was ordering the lights — as a suggested item at
the bottom, it showed these
handy outlet adapters
outlet adapters add outlet to light fixture

These are great if you don’t have outlets outside, especially for something
like holiday lights. You can screw this into your outdoor lights and use
them as an outlet instead. Cool, right? 

I decided to use them to make it easier to change out or charge the
batteries in our non-electrical light fixtures. And I knew I needed to
bridge the gap between where you screw in the bulb and where the shade gets
too narrow on our sconces.  

I took some scrap dowel rod, cut it down and spray painted it to match the
light. Then glued it on to the adapter: 

adapter hack for lighting without electricity

The spray painting is really not necessary — I thought we’d be able to see
it in there but you can’t at all. You’ll need to figure out how long you
want to cut your dowel, this will depend on your light fixture. 

I glued the parts together with
Gorilla Glue, and it’s held up awesome! Once it’s cured it’s SUPER strong. I also used
it to attach the bottom of the puck to my little contraption: 
easy way to screw puck lights into fixture

As you can see, I drilled a hole through the wood to run wire through (stay
tuned for that in a minute), just for added security. It is not needed
though, so if you choose this option you can forego the wire. 

This option makes it super easy to screw in and out, just like a
light bulb!:

sconce with puck lights

It has worked so well — I’m planning on making this change to the sconces
in my office. You can see how I first attached them with wire below…

How to use puck lights instead of bulbs

The sconces have a part inside that has a small hole. I ran the wire through

Light a sconce without wiring electricity

The back of the puck light has two holes — you’ll need to run the wire
through those, then tighten as much as you can:

Hack for lighting without electricity

When it’s secure, twist the puck light (with batteries) back on: 

Using puck lights instead of bulb in light fixtures

And that’s it! I use the bracket that comes with the light to hang — just
screw it into the wall and hang your light: 

Library bookcase lights without electricity

They look GREAT! I wanted something simple that I could aim toward the
shelves, and these work perfectly. 

As you can see here, I angled them so you can’t see the light unless you’re
right under them. The scones have adjustable arms: 

Deep green vintage vogue bookcases using kitchen cabinets
I almost forgot to mention, that little remote in the photo above allows you
to operate these without touching them. It has a timer and dimmer option
which is great. The timer is key because when I’ve used puck lighting in the
past, we would turn them on and ALWAYS forget to turn them off. The battery
ran out quickly because of that. I purchased
another puck light remote
for this room. 

There are pros and cons to these little puck lights: 


  • Using this hack is MUCH cheaper than running electrical. 
  • You can use them anywhere so it opens up so many possibilities.
  • The puck lights give off a decent amount of light. 
  • You can do this with regular light fixtures (where the lights are
    enclosed) as well — not just sconces! 


  • The light is not as bright as normal bulbs. I’d compare it to somewhere
    between at 25-40 watt bulb.
  • The remote isn’t quite as convenient as a light switch.
  • The puck lights aren’t as attractive as a bulb. 

For me, the convenience far outweighs the cons. If I have an outlet below (to
run wiring) and a good spot for a light switch nearby, I’ll still opt for
having it wired. But this is a great option for bigger projects like this that
would cost more to have an electrician add. 

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