Monday, January 31, 2011

How to re-cover a lamp shade


Okay so most of you know I'm re-decorating my room this last month before my hubby returns from deployment. I've been wanting to re-do it for a while but just couldn't settle on what I wanted. I finally chose a look at went with it full force! I painted my little fingers off this weekend with the help of my 12 year old niece (yes it sometimes made it harder) bless her heart - we got it done and today I decided to re-cover my old lamp shades. It only cost about $6 for a yard of fabric I picked up on sale and the rest of the supplies I had at home! So this had led me to my first how-to blog!

Supplies you'll need -

  •  An old lamp shade
  • About a half yard of fabric per lamp shade you plan to recover. This will vary depending on the size shade you have. I re-covered two identical lamp shades and bought a yard of fabric but I have some left over.
  • Scissors
  • A large piece of paper
  • Spray Adhesive
  • Fabric Glue
  • An iron
  • Ribbon for trim if you decide to have a trim
First start by laying out your LARGE piece of paper. I had a piece of poster board I used, but butcher paper or even the back side of some old wrapping paper will work great.

Lay the seam of your lamp shade down on the paper and using a pen or pencil trace the top of the lamp shade as you roll it on the paper. You'll end when the seam touches the paper again.

This picture shows how it will naturally curve as you roll. You'll end up with a half circle - or as my 3 year old daughter Ashlyn calls it - a rainbow. :)

Repeat that process with the bottom half of the shade as well.
You should end up with something like this -

Now there are two options you can do - either measure or eyeball about a 1/4" from your lines and draw another line. Cut on that line - or cut the pattern out as is and when you cut the fabric cut it about a 1/4" wider than your pattern. You'll want a little extra fabric to tuck and glue under the shade so you'll have finished edges. I'll explain in the next steps.

I cut the pattern out as was. Lay an old towel down on your work surface and spray a tiny bit of spray adhesive on your CUT OUT pattern. Lay the pattern adhesive side down on your fabric.

Here is where I decided to cut my fabric a little bigger.

If you've already made your template/pattern 1/4" larger you'd just follow your template/pattern and cut the fabric out the same size. **Time saver tip - if you are doing two shades at once like I was - leave your fabric folded in half as it is when you get it from the fabric store and cut two pieces out at once! **

Next you want to iron one short side of your fabric under about 1/4 to 1/2". This will allow a finished seam down the middle when we get the shade done.

Okay so here comes the tricky part. I wasn't able to take pictures as I was doing this so hopefully I can explain it okay. Spray the backside of your fabric with the adhesive spray all over. Starting with the edge of fabric you did NOT iron place it on the lamp shade at the seam. You'll need to lay the fabric down on the shade all the way around. You'll be able to pick up and move the fabric for about a minute or two before the adhesive dries and really starts to hold so you'll need to move fast. Pick the fabric up and re-adjust or rub out any wrinkles you get during this process. You should end with the ironed side overlapping the un-ironed side creating a nice seam. It should look something like this -

Okay so now you have extra fabric on the top and bottom. You'll want to cut a few slits (I forgot this step until AFTER I added the glue - oops) to the fabric so you can fold it over and lay it flat on the underside of the shade. You can use the spray adhesive here, but I found it easier to use a few drops of fabric glue. Please excuse the crappy fingernail paint I've got going on! :)

And once you're done with that you're done!! :) Step back and take a look. For around $6 you've just totally re-vamped your lamp shade! You totally ROCK!!

Okay so you're looking at it and you think its still needs a little something something. I decided to add some double ruffle ribbon to the top and bottom to finish it off a little. Here's how I did that.

Add some fabric glue to the ribbon and carefully (I say carefully because adding straight ribbon to a round shade can get kind of wonky) wrap it around the top and/or bottom of the shade. Adding more glue as you go. You'll end up with this beauty! -

In case you haven't noticed by now my pictures are getting progressively worse. That's because the kids had realized I was doing a project in the kitchen WHILE THEY WERE AWAKE and just HAD to come bug me! Gotta love the little squirts! :)

The possibilities are endless. I thought this design would be so cute with a little fabric trim like the kind that looks like feathers!! But since they are for me and my hubby's room I figured I would be nice and not give him a feather boa lamp :( If it was for a little girl you could do zebra fabric with hot pink fur!! CUTE CUTE!!

Now get off the computer and go re-cover your shade! :P Post pics if you do I'd love to see them!

Please allow me to introduce myself...

I've been wanting to start a DIY blog for a while. I love crafting and get questions from friends all the time on where I find time, how I do it, how can they do it, etc. etc. Sooo I'm now a blogger!! Hopefully I can keep it up. My plan is to document some of my crafting project with pictures and how-to instructions so you can all do these projects with me! :)  I'll also be blogging about cool thing I find that help me with my projects, or just things I think are cool in general!

So first let me introduce myself! My name is LaRae. I'm 30 - yes...ugh...30 :( Really it's not that bad cause I'm still pretty awesome. :P I'm a military wife. My husband Kyle is in the Air Force. He's an EA in Civil Engineering - yeah I don't really know what that means either :P I use a lot of smileys when I type :D. I have two little kids whom my life literally revolves around. Ashlyn is 3 and Hayden is 2. They are Irish Twins (11 months apart). They are my life and I love them like no other - they also drive me NUTS!! :)

I have always loved anything creative. It took me a long time to really get into creating things. I loved it but never had confidence in myself. For some reason I just decided that was dumb thinking and I should try and do anything I love to do. I do not claim to be the best at anything. None of my projects are perfect, but most of them are fun! :) My newest project is re-decorating my master bed and bath. But I also love cake decorating (a new hobby of mine) sewing, quilting, cooking, baking, making my husband build furniture for my decorating plans :) and really just anything creative. I can NOT however paint or draw. God did not instill that talent in me. :) And that's pretty much me in a nutshell. So I hope you decide to follow me and I hope you enjoy my new blog! :)