Traditional Lampshade Making

Posted by Joanna Corney on

Lampshades can come in different shapes and sizes from contemporary drum and tapered to the more traditional soft shades

Mustard Lampshade

Traditional soft shades are made by stretching fabric over a frame until it sits perfectly next to it and then sewn in place. This style of lampshade is a lot more labour intensive to make than a drum lampshade, and involves a lot of stretching, pinning and hand sewing. Each one of our traditional lampshades are made by hand, and here you can see how they take shape…

Firstly, I start with a wire frame and bind the top, bottom and two opposite side struts using cotton tape

Lampshade Frame

Using the fabric on the bias and with the wrong side facing out, I stretch the fabric over half the frame and pin it in place to the binding tape. I continue to stretch and pin the fabric until it is sitting nicely against the frame, and then mark with a pencil where the side struts are and the top and bottom struts meet the frame

Lampshade Making

Next I unpin the fabric and use this as a template for the other side. Machine sewing the two sides together and overlocking the seams

Lampshade Sewing

Once this is done, I remove the side strut cotton tape and with the fabric cover turned the right way, pull it over the top of the frame. I then continue to pin and stretch the fabric in place using my pencil marks as a guide, and do this until the fabric is sitting in the correct position is nice and taut

Lampshade Making

Next is hand sewing the fabric in place, along the top and bottom

How to make a lampshade

After it is all sewn, I cut the excess fabric off and finish the shade with a matching bias binding and pom pom trim

Traditional Lampshade How To

Take a look at what the finished lampshade looks like...

Mustard pom pom lampshade

You can see my range of traditional lampshades here. I can also recover lampshades, so if you have the perfect size and shape shade for your lamp base, but it needs a bit of a refresh, why not get in touch! 

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