We recently moved into an older house that doesn't have overhead lighting built into most of the rooms. We bought floor lamps for some of the rooms, but wanted hanging lights in most common areas. 1 trip to Ikea later and we had purchased a number of their hanging lights (If you don't know what I'm referring to, it's just a light bulb socket attached to a long extension cord).

Unfortunately, thanks to the fact that Ikea sells the light cords and the light shades separately, we somehow managed to buy too few lampshades.

So for a month we had a raw lightbulb hanging from our bedroom ceiling. I tried to convince my wife it was 'Industrial Chic' but she saw through my charade.

So, for Valentines day, I built her a custom, designer lampshade.

Step 1: Supplies and Tools

Here's what you need:
  • Thick paper
  • Sharp craft knife ($1)
  • Glue Stick ($1)
  • A little bit of scotch tape
  • Pliers to work with, and cut the wire
  • 20 guage wire (about $3 for 6 m. at Home Depot)
  • A craft board to cut the paper on
  • A cork-backed ruler is essential if you can't cut a straight line
  • A plumbing fixture (see pictures) - You may be able to find something different for this piece.

Notes about supplies:
  • I bought a medium-thickness Japanese paper from an art store. I cost about $3 for an 11" by 14" sheet. Thin paper won't work, think 'construction paper' type thickness to be safe. 
  • I used a plumbing fixture to hang the lampshade off of. I had a few different ideas, but this was the easiest. They cost less than $1 at home depot and are designed to attach to the wall or floor around pipes in your bathroom (toilet water pipes). It conveniently opens and closes via a pivoting rivet at one end and the opening happens to be perfect for sitting on top of the Ikea light fixture.
  • Re: Lightbulbs. You do NOT want to use a traditional incandescent with this light shade; at least, no over about 40 watts. I started with a 100 watt incandescent, just because that was what was here already, and the paper was getting hot to the touch within a minute or two. I quickly switched to a 60 watt fluorescent and everything is nice and cool even when the light has been on for a long time. I plan to put a hight wattage LED in here shortly since this is also my Tinker/Maker workspace and I want a little more light.

Would have looked much better if there was an inner layer.
It would be a little more difficult, but imagine doing this with that thin copper they sell in rolls at the hobby store.

About This Instructable




Bio: I like to fix, tinker, and make things from scratch. I also like to cook. mmmmmm... foooood.
More by The Valiant:Hammered Copper Bookmarks - Easy Combination Lock Jewelry Box Handmade Designer Paper Lampshade 
Add instructable to: