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If you want a replacement lamp shade to take the place of one that's ugly or out of style, don't throw the old one away! You can learn how to cover a lamp shade yourself, whether you reuse an old frame or get fresh lamp shade materials from a craft store.
If you're using an old shade, start by carefully removing the old fabric. If you're careful and cut along the seams, you can use the old fabric as a pattern for the new shade, so it's worth taking some time on this.
Lay out your replacement lamp shade fabric with the inside up. If you're using a pattern, trace it lightly on the new fabric with pencil or disappearing-ink marker. Otherwise, roll the lamp shade frame along the fabric, marking its top and bottom as you go.
Cut out your shade around the outside of the pattern you marked. (It's easier to trim away a little excess fabric than to make up for a shade that comes up short.) If there are corners, cut a small V at the top of each corner to keep the fabric from bunching up.
Use fusible webbing and an iron to attach the fabric to the frame. Do the sides first, then the top, then the bottom.
Trim away any excess fabric or webbing, and be sure all fabric is at least three inches away from the light bulb when the shade is in place.
How do you "iron" the fabric to attach it to the frame when replacing a lamp shade cover?
I learned how to make fabric covered soft lampshades (the kind with a lining, Victorian shades, etc.) the way professionals do it from an excellent e-book available at shadecrafters.com. It turned out to be a whole lot easier than I thought it would be.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|