Friday, February 11, 2011

Exotic hanging lampshade

Eagle-eyed readers will recognize these shades because I actually made them almost a year ago and they have glimpsed by in other project posts. I never showed them to you since I've been waiting all this time to get a cord kit. The cord needed to be black. Couldn't find that at any of my regular stores. So it's just been sitting around waiting for better times. But here they are, finally :)

This is just one of them, I made a pair.

The look I was going for was similar to this.

This look may not be exactly Moroccan but it gives me that same Thousand and One Night feel, which is what I wanted for our master bedroom (if a small cottage even can have a master bedroom. It's where me and the husband sleep, though, with a child or two, depending on how the musical beds play out). 

This is what I started out with. 

Clockwise, from the top. 
*Thrifted bell shade with the top layer of fabric removed (I had two identical shades, only one shown here), 
*an old fireplace tool set with beautiful turned brass handles (only one of the tools shown but there was another one with the exact same handle in the set), 
*thrifted traditional candle holder (again, I had a pair but only one shown here), 
*various gold ribbons for trim (I also used a black ribbon to hang the finished shade, not shown), 
*old shower curtain in a sheer deep red with stitched patterns (underneath all the other stuff).

I didn't take pics while making this but I'll walk you through it. 

1. Remove the top fabric on your lamp shades. I carefully used my Xacto knife to remove this and made sure not to harm the lining on the inside of the shade since I wanted to keep that. 

2. I laid the shower curtain out on a flat surface and laid one of the shades ontop, on it's side. I rolled the shade across the fabric to estimate how much fabric would be needed to cover the shade, marked and cut out a little more than I thought I needed, in one piece. 

3.  Before putting the fabric on the frame I had to make these little hanging loops so the shade could be hung from this ribbon (see pic above). I used little snippets of wire coat hangers but any thicker wire should work. I made something that looked like a figure eight, or maybe more like an S, and attached three of these around the shade, evenly placed. I hooked the bottom of the S around one of the vertical braces of the shade structure and curved the top of the S as close to the horizontal brace as possible. And then pinched the wire so it would be firmly attached.

4. I then grabbed the hot glue and started the slow process of attaching the fabric to the shade frame, pulling the fabric taut as I went. It's not perfect by any stretch but it's really not that visible. I made sure to start and end on the same vertical brace so the seam would be covered up by gold trim (see below). When I was done I trimmed the excess red fabric along the edges as closely as possible. 

5. I added one type of gold trim to all the vertical braces and another to the top and bottom with hot glue. I had to use two kinds because I didn't have enough of either kind to last me for both shades (I recommend measuring to make sure you have enough of your trim before you start, you need more than you think :)). 

6. So the shade is done. Since it'll be hanging upside down I also wanted to add a finial to the bottom (narrow) end of the shade. Then I unscrewed the handles of the fireplace tools and the handles had a threaded hole. But I didn't have any screws with the same corresponding thread that would fit into the handle. So what I did is I got a screw with a head big enough to not slip through the hole of the shade hanging device (for lack of a better name) and threaded it through the shade hanging device from the inside of the shade (see pic below). Then I filled the hole in the brass handle with hot glue and inserted the screw, and held it in place until the glue had cooled.

7. I added black ribbon to my wire hanger loops at the top.

8. I hung my candle holders from the four poster bed I made here (still awaiting it's coat of black paint) with simple little nails, attached the black ribbon to the middle arm of the candle holder. (Here I go again with my weirdly empty candle holders).

9. And now, a year later I added the cord sets.

The only thing I have left to do here is add these dimmers to the cord so it'll be easy to just reach out a hand and dim or turn the light off altogether (I just have to order the dimmers first :). And they only come in brown, but oh, well, it's the closest to black I can get). The idea is that with the bed painted black the cord and dimmer will be very hard to see.

So the eureka moment to this project came a few weeks back as I was strolling our local super Walmart with our youngest, just browsing, eyeing and planning for future projects. When I came upon this.

So the 6ft cord is a little on the short side but for the price (I think they were like $6 each) it wasn't bad. Yeah, the shade and clamp come off and leave you with a nice black socket and cord. Ready to plug in :) I also noticed later that Lowe's had them as well.

Here's some more afters.

Um, yes, there's a person in that last pic. Never mind him, he's just sleeping late (I kind of have to snap my pics when I can get to them, late sleepers or not :)).

At night. (No sleeping husband this time :)).

These lights provide beautiful ambient light for the whole room through the wide top opening as well as ample reading light in bed through the narrow bottom end. The perfect solution for our bedroom!

I also wanted to add that you don't know how much it pains me to post pics of rooms without the proper wall color, or in this case both wall and bed (among other things). This all looks a little random and out of place without that grayish-purple on the wall and the black bed and all the fabric I want to add for a canopy, but I believe it could really look spectacular.

So in a sense I show you a project but what I see in my head is the spectacular finished result. That's the downside to having a work in progress. I suspect none of you would be with me here reading along on my adventures if I waited to have it all said and done because I may have had two finished posts on this blog, total, if that were the case... Yeah.

So take it for what it is at present but try to imagine the spectacular results :) Pretty please? :)

Ps. Linking up with
Blue Cricket Design

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  1. So purty!!! I love that last shot with the lamps lit. What a great SIMPLE way to hang a pendant light - looks so cute on the brass wall sconce. Beautiful project! And perfect with your arch window frame. Never mind the walls, your room looks great!

  2. The lamps are beautiful, both off and on. I love the fabric and the color.


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