What are Some Ideas for Decorating Lampshades?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 17 October 2019
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Decorating lampshades can be a lot of fun as well as a great way to recycle an old lamp into something stylish. You can be as simple or as elaborate as you like when decorating lampshades. Shells, beads, fringe, braid, ribbon, rhinestones and tassels are just some of the things you could use for borders on the tops and/or bottoms of lampshades. Fabric paint and/or fabric can also be used to transform the shade itself. With just a little time, some inexpensive materials and a lot of imagination you can have fun decorating lampshades to suit any room.

Elegant lampshades can be made with a remnant of luxurious material, some beaded fringe and/or rhinestones. Use good quality fabric glue to attach the cloth to the shade. You can use velvet or satin or just about anything as long as you apply the glue carefully so it doesn't show under the fabric. An easy way to make a glamorous shade is to glue a piece of a feather boa as a trim on the bottom part of the lampshade.


For children's rooms, you can paint simple, whimsical designs onto the shade using fabric paint. These could be butterflies, cars or animals depending on the theme of the child's room. When decorating lampshades for children's rooms, you could hot glue novelty erasers onto the bottom or top of the shade for a border. Again, these could be any fun shapes to go with the theme such as a baseball eraser border for a sports-themed child's bedroom.

A beach-themed lampshade may work well for a cottage. You can make a seashell border and maybe stencil on a design such as a starfish or boat. Try decorating lampshades that are similar but in different colors and motifs to coordinate with each room in the cottage.

Simple, traditional shades can be made by gluing solid colored fabric onto the shade and adding a border of braid or ribbon. You can add more interest to this look by adding double rows of trim. Try one row in a different width than the other.


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Post 4

@lmorales - You can go with a more modern lamp base and a simpler shade. Some times it helps to think in geometrics as well and go with a square shade in white or off white and glue a simple black ribbon around the shape.

A lot of the modern element stems off of flexibility with a few accents that stand out. You could, for example, choose a pricey lampshade and a less expensive base or vice versa with one of those things having an obvious, bright element to it. Tuscan decorating works the same way - with a "safe" base (like a neutral paint) and accent colors.

Post 3

@win199 - How would you incorporate a more modern look with your home decor accents and specifically in decorating lampshades? I love the modern look, but hate the price tag it often carries.

Post 2

@Kamchatka - I think a lot of decorating lampshades goes with country home decorating or the shabby chic decorating that everyone is into. I don't think many people realize that you can have modern and contemporary elements as well.

Post 1

Decorating a lampshade can be simple and fun. You can do anything from dyeing to stenciling and it can all speak to your attitude. Figuring out how to decorate lampshades according to your standards and decor can be really fun. You should definitely start with the bigger elements in your room, however.

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