Introduction: Paper Mache Light Shade

This light shade can be a trendy alternative for old lamps. Older children and teens may particularly enjoy the varied light pattern that it creates.

It is a fun project to make with kids and the design can be easily altered to match your room.

Step 1: Materials for the Glue

- 1/2 cup Plain Flour

- 1 cup Water

- Saucepan

- Spoon

Step 2: Making the Glue

Place the flour in the saucepan

Add half of the water and stir thoroughly to make a smooth paste

Add remaining water and stir

Put on heat, bring to boil, stirring constantly.

Turn heat to low, stir until thickens

If the glue seems to be too thick add some more water.

If you are working with children it can be fun to add some food colouring to make the glue coloured.

Step 3: Materials for Light Shade

- Plastic Bags

- Balloons

- Paper

- Scissors

- Homemade Glue

Step 4: Protect Your Workspace

Place the plastic bags on the floor where you will be working

Step 5: Blow Up a Balloon

Blow up a balloon

Secure with a knot

It doesn't matter what colour the balloon is as you will pull it out at the end

Step 6: Prepare the Paper

Tear up a couple of pieces of paper

You can tear the paper into sizes of your choice, the size of the paper will determine the pattern once your light is turned on

Step 7: Support Your Work

It makes it easier to place your balloon in a cup or container when covering it.

This will prevent it from sticking to the plastic bags and will stop it from rolling around

Step 8: Cover the Balloon

Dip your fingers into the glue and put a layer onto the balloon

Place some paper on top of the glue

Cover all of the paper with some more glue

Continue doing this until the whole balloon is covered, it doesn't matter if there are some gaps

I find that this works best if you allow the first layer to dry, before putting on a second layer

Step 9: Second Layer

Once it has dried, place another layer of paper on, following step 6

Again don't be too careful. The areas with less layers will let more light through.

I added three layers in total.

The maximum amount of layers that you will want to do is three, depending on how thick your paper is. Be careful not to do two many layers as the light won't shine through.

Step 10: Pop the Balloon

Once you have finished putting the paper on and have allowed it to dry, pop the balloon.

The balloon may not come out straight away, you can either very carefully cut it out or wait as it will slowly shrink

Step 11: Neatening the Edge

Place some glue on the outside of the edge and the inside

Take a small piece of paper and fold it over the edge (as shown above)

Cover the paper in glue so it will stick

Step 12: Finished Light Shade

Grab an old lamp and replace the shade with your new DIY one.

For safety in kids rooms, use a globe with a lower wattage. I chose a wattage of two.

I have also used this same technique to make pinata's. Make sure you cover the whole balloon and don't add too many layers as it makes it harder to break.

Paper Contest 2018

Participated in the
Paper Contest 2018