A New DIY Endeavor

Here’s a quick and easy project I tackled the other weekend to continue my updates in the kitchen.  I followed this tutorial and created a bright new lampshade.  It was a simple project and didn’t take too long, once I had the right materials.  So here’s what you need:

  • Lampshade – mine was 8″ across the top, 11 1/2″ across the bottom, and 9″ from top to bottom
  • Fabric of your choice (make sure it’s not too dark so some light can still get through)
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Hot glue gun
  • Iron

1.  Prep the material – make sure that you iron your fabric.  It will inevitably have creases from being folded or rolled on the bolt in-store.  You will be disappointed when your project is completely finished and there is a big old crease that could have easily been ironed out.  Don’t skip this step!

2.  Prep the lampshade – Be sure to buy a flat lampshade without pleats or other decorative features so you can easily cover it.  The shade I bought did have a tiny bit of texture to it so I started by peeling off the trim on the top and bottom (just glue – so it was easy to remove).  It left behind a bit of a sticky residue, but that actually worked in my favor to hold the material in place for cutting.

TIP: One thing I didn’t think about until after the fact, was that my lampshade had a slant to it.  If you want this to be really easy, get a lampshade with the same diameter at the top as at the bottom.  If your shade is smaller at the top, keep in mind that you’ll need more fabric.  Luckily I had just enough with 1/2 yard to roll the shade the whole way around, but just barely.

3.  Measure and cut the fabric – I rolled the lampshade across the material and traced the top and bottom edge while doing so.  I used painter’s tape to secure the fabric to the seam of the lampshade so I would know where I started.  Then I trimmed along the lines leaving an extra inch at the top, bottom and each side.

4.  Cover the lampshade – Lining up the first edge of the material with the existing seam of the lampshade, I ran a line of hot glue on the shade itself and quickly secured the fabric.  At the opposite edge of the fabric, I folded over the extra 1″ to make a hem, running a line of glue down the material and folding it over to secure.  Then I wrapped the material around the lampshade, smoothing over it several times to make sure there were no bubbles (it helps to have an extra set of hands, but not necessary) and glued the hemmed edge down onto the already secured edge of the fabric to make a seam.

5.  Finishing – Once that seam was cool, I began working on turning under the top and bottom edges.  Because the brackets are at the top, I snipped slits in the fabric at those places so that it fold over smoothly on either side (x 3 brackets).  And then, you guessed it…more glue.  I went around in sections gluing the top edge down inside the lamp shade and flipped it over to do the other end.  You could add some edging to the top and/or bottom if you want a more finished looking edge.  I think for now I’ll leave it as is, but may consider adding something later on.

All in all it was a fun and easy project and for an $8 lampshade and $5 worth of material, a very inexpensive way to customize a space.  And the good news is that if I ever get tired of the fabric choice – I know how to change it!


3 thoughts on “A New DIY Endeavor

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