8 Ways to Decorate a Lampshade

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Update the look of a room by transforming a plain lampshade into an attractive room accent with a few personal touches. A strip of fabric, a few sequins, a swash of paint or a lovely silhouette can turn a lampshade from drab to fab. Here are a few ideas to get you started.


Decorate with baubles and beads

Strands of beads or pieces of costume jewelry add a glamorous feel. Attach strings of beads along the top and bottom edges of the lampshade with hot glue. Sew small hanging jewels along the bottom of the lampshade for a chandelier effect.

Add cut out silhouettes

Silhouettes of friends, pets or city skylines attached to a lampshade create interesting shadows when the lights are turned on. Use black craft paper to cut out the silhouette and attach to the inside of the lampshade with spray glue or hot glue.

Cover with fabric and notions

Scraps of fabric, leftover buttons and decorative lace offer unlimited opportunities to decorate a lampshade. Cover a lampshade with the bodice or sleeve of an old sweater. Sew buttons onto lampshades in colorful patterns. Make fabric flowers and glue to the lampshade. You can even use lace as a stencil and spray paint over it for a delicate pattern.

Add color with fabric paints

Fabric paints are an easy way to add your own design to a lampshade. Fabric paints come in a variety of colors. There are also glitter paints and paints that make a 3D effect.


Washi tape

Washi tape is another easy way to add color to a lampshade. Washi tape comes in a variety of colors, patterns and sizes. And, as a bonus, washi tape is not permanent and can be removed later.

Cut designs in the lampshade

For an effect that is the opposite of a silouette, cut designs into the lampshade. When the light is turned on, the light will shine through the lampshade and create a bright reflection on the wall.

Adorn with doilies

Create a romantic atmosphere by decorating a lampshade with doilies or handmade silk flowers. The doilies can be dyed in different colors that match the room décor. Create a soft glow by covering a lampshade in net, tulle, chiffon or organza fabric.

Cover with newsprint

Attach an old newspaper, book or map to a lampshade with a coat of Mod Podge. Any decorative paper, such as tissue paper or cutout pieces of craft paper, can also be affixed to a lampshade.

Last Updated: January 31, 2013
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About Coletta Teske Coletta Teske has 25 years' experience in tech journalism, as well as home and gardening topics. She has freelanced for Fortune 500 companies such as Boeing and Microsoft, published more than two dozen computer books for Prima Publishing and Macmillan, and worked as a freelance correspondent for West Hawaii Today. Coletta has been an avid gardener since she was 2 years old. While living in Hawaii, she achieved a lifelong dream of becoming a certified master gardener.

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