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How to Makeover a Lampshade Using Fabric

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Do you have a lampshade with a design you no longer love, but the size and shape of the lampshade are still perfect for the lamp base? Simply recover the lampshade using fabric! Tastes and trends can change over time and buying a new lampshade can be expensive, but a quick and inexpensive makeover simply using fabric to recover the lampshade gives it a whole new look!

I have a vintage lamp in my bedroom that I love love love, but I no longer like the lampshade​. The size and shape of the lampshade work well with the lamp, but the color and design no longer work with the colors and design in my main bedroom, so I’m sharing an easy tutorial on How to Makeover a Lampshade Using Fabric! And, thanks to Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control®, I’m really happy with how the lampshade makeover turned out!

Several years ago in college, I recovered a lampshade with fabric in order to make it match the rest of my tropical, tiki-themed room. I did NOT do a good job. Every time the light was turned on, you could see the crappy cut and paste job I did with the leftover fabric on the inside of the lampshade. But, I learned my lesson! So, when I decided to give the lampshade in my main bedroom a makeover using fabric, I knew I needed to cut and glue the fabric with precision in order to make it look professional. This is where Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control® comes in! Thanks to the patented control applicator, Loctite Ultra Gel is easy to use and provides pinpoint accuracy. Plus, the gel formula won’t drip or run, so your craft or DIY project will look professional, unlike my college dorm lamp!

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

If you’re ready to learn how to makeover one of your lampshades using fabric, let’s get started!

You’ll need a few materials:

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

 

  • Lampshade
  • Fabric
  • Template paper (butcher paper, wrapping paper, newspaper, etc.)
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Scissors (fabric scissors if you have them)
  • Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control®
  • Spray Adhesive
  • Craft stick or flat head screwdriver

Also, please be sure to use a face mask and work in a well-ventilated area when using Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control® and spray adhesive. Be sure to read all of the manufacturer’s instructions and follow all directions and warnings. Wash hands thoroughly after handling.

Step-by-step tutorial:

  1. First, if you’re recovering a tapered lampshade, you’ll need to make a paper template. (If you’re recovering a drum lampshade with no tapered sides, you’ll just need the measurements and can use a ruler to make a template.) Trace the lampshade onto the paper with a pencil to create your template. Start and end at the lampshade’s original seam so you know where to start and stop. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  2. Cut out the template and make sure it fits the lampshade. 
  3. Next, trace the template onto the fabric. And then add an inch to both the top and bottom as well as two inches to the right side to give you enough fabric to make a seam. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty CanaryHow to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  4. Cut the fabric following along the outer dimensions with the extra 1-2″ added.How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  5. Attach the fabric to the lampshade along the lampshade’s original seam using Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control®. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  6. Then spray the backside of the rest of the fabric with spray adhesive and begin attaching the fabric to the lampshade, making sure to pull the fabric taut, ensuring there are no air pockets, and following along the top and bottom traced template lines so the fabric fits accurately when you get to the end. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  7. When you get to the end, fold the edge of the fabric over twice (so no rough edge is showing) and glue it in place using Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control®. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty CanaryHow to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary 
  8. Make cuts at the joints in the top of the lampshade frame to allow the fabric to lay flat. Using sharp scissors, trim the excess fabric from around the top and bottom of the lamp shade, trying to get as close to the wire frame inside.
  9. Using sharp scissors, trim the excess fabric from around the top and bottom of the lampshade, trying to get as close to the wire frame inside. (To be honest, I cut mine a little too short, so make yours a bit longer than the photo below.)How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  10. Add Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control® along the groove of where the wire meets the frame and using a craft stick or flat head screwdriver, tuck the fabric into the groove to give it a finished look. How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary
  11. Reattach your lampshade to the lamp base, plug it in, and admire your lampshade makeover! 

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

I absolutely love how it turned out! The pink of the original lampshade was just too garish for my current room. I had purchased the lampshade almost 10 years ago when I was living alone and had an apartment full of bright pinks, teals, and purples. Now, I’m married and in my forever home and I like the luxe feel of the velvet and the jewel tone colors! How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

Just in case you’re curious, yes, the original lampshade does bleed through the new purple velvet lampshade when the lamp is turned ON, so if you’re recovering an old lampshade with a bold design, be aware that this is likely to happen, even with a heavy, dark upholstery fabric like the purple velvet that I used. Before I started the makeover, I tested to see if it was see-through, but decided that even though it does show through, I like it! It actually doesn’t bleed through as much as the photo below shows, it’s probably 50% of that in real life.

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

How to Makeover a Lamp Shade Using Fabric // Salty Canary

I purchased Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control® at Home Depot. You can find Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control® in the glue aisle which is usually located near the paint section. Or you can do an online order for a locker pickup which is super easy. I totally recommend it if you ever need to save time or you don’t want to go up and down the aisles looking for something.

Loctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel ControlLoctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel ControlLoctite® Super Glue ULTRA Gel Control

Will you try making over an old lampshade using fabric? If you do, please share a photo of the finished lampshade with me!

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