Mini Make - Simple Lampshade

I whipped these up a while when I was messing about with cheap lighting ideas.

It's essentially just a paper circle with a bent paper clip fixed on the inside (so you can hang it or put on a lamp base.) 

They're super quick and cost nothing to make, you can just use whatever paper or thin card stock you already have laying around!

What I used:

Paper or thin card

Paper clips

Washi tape (optional)

Glue stick

Tacky wax



What I did:

  • If you're using washi tape firstly lay it flat across your paper, taking care to keep it in a straight line.

I also used lace tape. (My new favourite thing in the world! Sticky backed lace, you will struggle not to plaster EVERYTHING with it, so pretty!)

I wanted a wider shade for the lace so a lay two strips parallel to each other. 

  • Using a ruler and a steady hand, slice the paper strips to your desired width and approx 15 cm (though this it totally up to you depending on the size shade you want!). I'd suggest larger shades for ceilings and standard floor lamps and smaller sizes for table lights.

  • For the black and white shade, I cut a strip from a paper Topshop bag I'd beenhoarding saving as I loved the big, geometric print.

  • When you're happy with your strips bend them round into a circle and fix in place with some glue, like a Christmas paper chain but no slack, you don't want a saggy lampshade!

  • Leave the glue to dry.

  • You'll want them to go across the middle of the shade like a real one. Fix in place with tacky wax, take care that the wire is a good fit, too long and you'll bend the shade out of shape.

If your shade is likely to a be a permanent fixture try a little super glue to keep the wire in place.

Now you just need to decide which shade's going where!

Mine don't have permanent homes just yet but I've found a blob of tacky wax and a plain ceiling rose do the job for ceiling shades whilst spare stair banisters and dowel make great lamp bases, plus they can be painted any way you want.

(You could just use scissors for this part, but as a left handed person who cuts right handed with right handed scissors it's generally tidier for me to use a scalpel!)

Whilst that's happening you can start bending some paper clips to slot inside the shades.


TE: I've not used these with electric lights, they may well be flammable, who knows. If anybody happens to burn down their house, miniature or other wise, as a result of pairing these shades with working lights I accept no responsibility! :p