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7.12.2010

Fabric Covered Lampshade - How To


Lamp Before
Lamp After
I purchased a pair of lamps because the simple gourd shape is classic and elegant.  The problem with inexpensive lighting is usually how the shade looks - cheap faux silk in my case.  A great way to add color, pattern, or luxury is in the shade - and if you already have a good shade shape, buy fabric that you love and a can of spray adhesive for a custom look.  

Step one - Decide how you want to trim your shade.

  1. Self Tape - Use fabric to make your own tape and glue to top and bottom.
  2. Contrasting Tape - Use purchased tape, use fabric glue to attach.
  3. No Tape - Just fold edges under and glue.  This is the option I chose.

Step two - lay out your fabric (you can also make a pattern on paper first, but I am impatient and went straight to the scissors) and trace the natural roll of the shade, this is important, otherwise your fabric will not lay flat.  Leaving room for about an inch on either side of the trace when you cut.  Hint: If you chose to use a self tape, leave another 1" top and bottom to do a 1/2" tape.  Then you won't have to trace and measure again.

Step three - Cut out the trace - about an inch on top and bottom, this will allow for some give.  See hint above.
Step four- Iron your fabric to remove any wrinkles or folds.

Step five - Line your edge up to the existing seam and glue down, hold with clips.  Start to apply glue a small section at a time, rolling the shade and pulling the fabric taut.  Use clips to hold fabric in place while you work and as adhesive dries.

Step six - Cut off excess fabric, leaving just enough fabric to wrap around the edge.  Glue down.  I also used a small screwdriver to tuck the fabric under.  Take time with this - it is the details that make the piece look like you did it yourself or like you had it done professionally.

Step seven - Make self tape or take purchased trim and using glue (not spray adhesive) secure trim to top and bottom.  To make the tape wrap the fabric around iron-on adhesive and iron.

Tips:

  • Patterned fabrics are more forgiving.  
  • Test your adhesive out on your fabric - check for spotting and seeping.
  • Use a fabric that is medium weight, too light and it'll pull too easily
  • Iron the seam to flatten it.   


Kathryn Ireland fabric on shade with self tape.



Photo from style court



Photo from Style Beat




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