painted lampshade {tutorial}

Once upon a time there was a plain lampshade that sat upon a thrift store lamp in the corner of my desk. It was a perfectly fine lampshade, but just so plain.

And so I gave her a pretty facelift.

Do you have a lampshade that could use a little love? I’ll show you how I did it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

:: lampshade

:: design to transfer {I used this free wreath artwork + a hand drawn initial}

:: pencil

:: acrylic paint + fine paintbrush

STEP ONE: tape your image inside the shade in desired location

STEP TWO: trace the pattern onto the front of the shade {lightly} with a pencil. Hold the lampshade up to a light source for better transparency.

STEP THREE: paint over pencil marks with paint.


What an elegant lamp shade she is now!

22 Responses to painted lampshade {tutorial}

  1. Nancy July 3, 2015 at 5:31 pm #

    I agree, I thought the design was embroidered. Very elegant , thank you for sharing.

  2. Hilary July 9, 2013 at 9:20 am #

    The link for the file is broken, and I also checked the one in comments. Any help to find the updated link?

    Love this

    • emily July 9, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

      just fixed it :)

  3. Antoaneta April 24, 2013 at 3:43 pm #

    Great idea! I think it’s not necessary to transfer the image on the lamp shade. You can just turn the lamp on and as the shade is partially transparent the picture will be visible :) Thus you skip one step of the process and on the front of the lamp shade you will not have any traces of pencil

  4. Susan January 26, 2013 at 8:52 am #

    You have a broken link for the wreath artwork. This is the correct download link now: https://www.box.com/shared/9r80lqapef

  5. Things That Inspire July 19, 2012 at 6:01 pm #

    I found you through My Sweet Savannah, and am going to show this to my sweet 12 year old daughter, who is having a great time decorating her room with her own special touches!

    Have a great weekend-

  6. MomofTwinGirls June 29, 2012 at 6:38 pm #

    Can you use a white out pen instead of a paint brush?

    • emily June 29, 2012 at 7:26 pm #

      It is definitely worth a try!

  7. Jennifer June 29, 2012 at 10:23 am #

    So cute – I’m obsessed with the laurel wreath motif these days.

  8. Kayce@pearsandbears.com June 28, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

    Wow! That is a great DIY. I love it.

  9. Susan June 28, 2012 at 1:55 pm #

    Very nice and I am sure the lamp is happy that you dressed the shade.

  10. Sandy June 28, 2012 at 12:43 pm #

    Thank you so much for sharing the wreath! I have my wedding in two days and we are using the wreath design for our table numbers. whoo! God’s provision :)

    • emily June 29, 2012 at 3:23 pm #

      Congratulations! Have a beautiful wedding day and blessed marriage.

  11. Camille June 28, 2012 at 11:45 am #

    I just love your projects. They come about the time I am looking for something creative to do.
    Thanks to you my front door has new numbers painted on it.

    Looks like I’ll be painting a lampshade this weekend.

  12. Heather June 28, 2012 at 10:17 am #

    Live this! Not good at DIY but I could do this! What type of paint did you use?

    • emily June 29, 2012 at 3:24 pm #

      just regular craft store acrylic paint.

  13. Jenny June 28, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    WOW! Before reading I thought you had hand embroidered this design. looks great!

  14. Jenna June 28, 2012 at 9:09 am #

    Lovely, Emily! Makes all the difference and what a simple project!

  15. rachel June 28, 2012 at 8:06 am #

    Love this! What a great idea!

  16. Sarah B Design June 28, 2012 at 7:56 am #

    That is such a great idea! It is amazing how much little details make a room feel more fun and complete

  17. Lindsay June 28, 2012 at 6:47 am #

    I LOVE the lamp shade makeover! It looks so classy and beautiful. Thanks for sharing the wreath!

  18. Stephanie June 28, 2012 at 5:03 am #

    This is adorable!

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