Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Lampshade DIY

I wrote this post Monday but kept forgetting to publish it. Here goes!

One project that I actually completed this weekend is covering my lampshade with fabric. The old lampshade was blue like the wall and had peacocks on it. We tried buying a shade (pictured) but they were never the right size or color. So we decided to recover the original shade with a golden yellow fabric to match our new mustard yellow wall (pictures of the wall will be up shortly).



At first, I messed up a bunch of fabric trying to cut it in straight pieces that just didn't fit the tapered shade. Then I googled around for a bit and found instructions on how to recover a lamp shade from
  1. lay out old newspaper/paper bag
  2. position the lampshade with the seam facing down on the edge of the paper
  3. starting at the seam, roll the shade across the newspaper, tracing both the top and bottom edges as you roll
  4. stop rolling when you get to the seam again
  5. cut out your new template and use it as a guide to cut your fabric. Add 1" to the top and bottom
  6. attach fabric to shade using adhesive
  7. make small cuts at the top and bottom to help the fabric lie flat as you fold it underneath the shade

I had a hard time with the last step and would recommend NOT adding 1" to the fabric (step 5). Instead cut the fabric to the exact size of your template and then use ribbon to cover the top and bottom seams. For instructions on using ribbon, check out the Fat Orange Cat blog.


  1. Great job on the lamp shade makeover! I haven't tried this yet because I'm not that crafty. I really WANT to be, I just haven't dedicated any time to it yet. I fear I'll become obsessive with crafting and start far too many projects I won't finish. I'm like that :)

  2. I have done a few lamp shades myself. If you have a sewing machine, what I would suggest is getting a good quality fabric, and then sew decorative ribbons to the ends. It'll look amazing.


  3. Thanks for the instructions - so much more budget-friendly than buying new.

  4. Thanks! I'm not that crafty either. I've had that lamp for a year now and never used it because I didn't know what to do with the lampshade. I still need to go back and add ribbon to cover the "mistakes" on the inside but all in all, it was much cheaper than buying a new shade. They can be pretty expensive!