Re-Think Your Decor: Jayne-Young Repurposes Antique Copper Pots Into Light Fixtures

Reader Contribution by Margie Monin Dombrowski
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The beauty of patina is its ability to tell a story. These antique copper pots whisper to you where they’ve been and what they used to be. If you really clue in and listen like Jayne-Young, the company that fashioned these pots into lighting fixtures, they can also tell you what they could be.

Jayne-Young owners Gary and Dana Butler of Newport Beach, California, were inspired on a trip to Mexico. While there, they witnessed a mother-and-daughter team running a restaurant from their own kitchen where they cooked with hand-me-down copper pots. The vessels were old and damaged but to the Butlers, they were just the thing to repurpose into light fixtures.

The natural finish on this ca. 1920 copper-pot-turned-light-fixture by Jayne-Young was caused by years of wear and tear, and comes from Puebla, Mexico. Photo Courtesy Jayne-Young.

The Butlers bought those cooking pots from the family at the restaurant — much to the family’s surprise — and today, Jayne-Young sources weathered copper pots from the 1800s and 1900s from antique dealers, flea markets, estate sales and importers. Hand-crafted and one-of-a-kind, each pot’s natural patina is preserved, connecting us to its previous owner’s history.

Creating each unique piece is a process. A circular opening is cut from the bottom of the pot, which then becomes the “ceiling canopy” that attaches the fixture to the ceiling. A frosted diffuser, copper grill and chain links or handles for suspension complete the piece.

Taking found materials and repurposing them into something new is inspiring, and Jayne-Young shows us to give everyday objects another chance. These one-of-a-kind pieces tell a story of a past generation that’s worth preserving, repurposing and passing on in one form or another.