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Shed Some Light! 4 Ways to Make an Upcycled Lampshade

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Ashley
02.22.13

Swapping out a lampshade in a room is like slapping on some lipstick when you’re having a rough day – one little addition can make a big difference! But don’t sprint to your favorite home décor store just yet. Lampshades aren’t cheap, and sometimes they don’t even come with a lamp! Save some cash by upcycling, instead.

Here are four of our favorite ways to upcycle a shade:

Photo: The Graphics Fairy

Fabric. If you have a favorite shirt that’s gone through the wash one too many times – but you’re not ready to say goodbye – give it a new life! Reuse your favorite fabric by making a scrap fabric lampshade. Simply strip the shade from its wire framing, gather some fabric scraps and wrap them around the metal frame. For the full tutorial, visit Living with PunksNote: Since you only need the shade frame for this project, it’s great for lampshades that have stains or are discolored from aging. 

   

Photo: Living With Punks

Sharpie. You don’t need to be an illustrator for this craft (although we won’t stop you from taking the credit)! Grab a sharpie, print out an image you’d like to add to your lamp and tape the print-out to the inside of your lampshade with painter’s tape. Turn on your lamp, and you’ll see your graphic shining through! Carefully trace the outline with a permanent marker. For full instructions, visit The Graphics FairyNote: This DIY works best for flat-surfaced lampshades – we don’t suggest trying to draw along a shade with creases or ridges! 

    

Photo: The Graphics Fairy

Maps. Upcycling maps from memorable travel destinations is one of our favorite ways to decorate around the home – so this step-by-step lamp revamp from Silver Boxes is right up our alley. Carefully cut the map into sections and then use Mod Podge to decoupage the map to the lampshade surface. Be sure to smooth out any air bubbles with your fingers. 

Photo: Silver Boxes

Paint. If you’re ready to take your crafty shade-skills up a notch, use acrylic paint instead of a sharpie to stencil an image! We love this painted lampshade tutorial from Emily at Jones Design Company. Tape a picture on the inside of the lampshade and trace your image with a pencil (holding the lampshade up to a light will help with transparency). Then, paint over the pencil lines with colors of your choice! Tip: Fine-tipped paintbrushes will work best for designs that have small details. 

Photo: Jones Design Company

Photo: Living With Punks

Photo: The Graphics Fairy

Photo: Silver Boxes

Photo: Jones Design Company

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