Lampshade Designer Service – Creating the perfect bespoke sized shade

Making your home just the way you want it involves lots of personal choices, editing and those little joys of finding just right colour of vase or the thrill of finding the perfect texture on a cushion - but how do you go about deciding what size of lampshade to choose?

To help you spend less time on working out your shade size and more time on choosing your fabric (let’s face it that’s the really fun bit we all enjoy!) we’ve put together our top tips on how to pick the right shade size and how to create it yourself.

From style and size tips, to creating a unique sized shade with our new game changing software or simply replacing an old shade like for like, read on!


Before you start here’s a few questions to answer about your shade…

  • Think about why you want the lamp in the first place, is it for practical reasons, to read, craft or work at?

  • In which case how much light do you need from your shade? This may affect the size of lampshade you go for.

  • Do you want a particular shape to fit in with the style of your room?

  • Is the shade for a pendant light or for a specific lamp base?

Including factors such as functionality, atmosphere and style into your new shade, will help you determine what you’re looking for and if you need more ideas check out our Pinterest boards here.

Design your own shade


And now for the magic… for a shade that’s totally unique we’ve recently launched our game changing tool - our Lampshade Designer Software – letting you create and visualise your custom-sized lampshade creations. It’s the ultimate way to get exactly the shade you want and when you are happy with the design, you can either download the pattern or send it to us and we'll create your lampshade Stick It PVC panel for you.

Available on our website for all lampshade makers to use, whether you’re a beginner or professional shade maker, the video below show just how simple it is to use.


Top Tips for a creating a shade for a lamp base


When using our Lampshade Design software here’s a few tips to help you create your shade from scratch:

  • The bottom edge of the lampshade, when in situ, should fall below the bulb-holder in order to hide this functional aspect of the lamp base. You also don’t want the socket or the switch to be visible.

  • Make sure that your lampshade’s base diameter is at least as wide or wider than the widest part of the base. Two times the base diameter is a good rule to follow.

  • In most cases, your lampshade height should be roughly 2/3 the height of the lamp base. This offers a balanced look. The taller the lamp base, the shorter the lampshade in most cases, especially floor lamps.

  • Another useful guide is to make the lampshade width similar to the visible height of the base.

  • When in doubt, go for a well-balanced look, keeping everything in proportion to ensure your base isn’t dwarfed by a huge shade or unbalanced by a teeny one. Do this and you shouldn’t go far wrong.

  • Mirroring the shape of the base is a useful guideline to use if you’re feeling uncertain, though it’s not a hard and fast rule by any means.

  • Sloping, round or curved lamp bases often work well with a similar shade such as empire, drum or bell. Square, angular and straight bases work well with similarly angled lampshades.

This fantastic example from professional shademaker @oliviaissac, shows how your Lampshade design translates into a shade.


Get kitted out


If you’ve made one of our lampshade making kits, you’ve already got all of the skills you need to make a lampshade yourself. That box is ticked! And if you haven’t tried one, then they’re a great way to learn all you need to know.

If you’re feeling adventurous and want to jump straight to designing and making your own shade, in using our Lampshade Design software, check out our Dannells’ You Tube channel. It’s packed with videos that will show you, in detail, how to make all of our lampshade making kits.

Old shade, new shade


If you’re replacing a lampshade and want to go for exactly the same size as your old one, simply measure the old shade and enter the measurements into our Lampshade Designer Software


And be brave! Many lamp bases and stands look great with any number of shade shapes and styles, so you don’t necessarily need to choose a shade that’s exactly like the one you’re replacing.


So finally, the best advice we can give; if you have a good feel for what you like then go for it, after all, it’s you who will see the shade most.

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