Capturing the season and our final #memadeshade competition of the year perfectly, November's winning lampshade has been beautifully made by Louise of @foresters_lampshades. Congratulations to Louise who picked such a charming wintry scene for her shade, which is based on a William Morris & Co tapestry, and then to really make the shade shine, added an elegant beaded trim.
Louise, an accomplished soft shade maker, has recently turned her skills to hard shade making and we think she's definitely made the grade! We can't wait to see what she'll make next from her £100 winners voucher to spend at Dannells.com!
Read more about Louise and her lampshade, interiors and vintage business, Foresters Lampshades, below as she tells us what she loves about lampshade making and her winning shade!
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the creative things that you do?
I'm Louise of Foresters Lampshades and Decorative Accessories. I’m based in rural South Derbyshire and specialise in handmade lampshades for soft furnishings companies, interior designers and private clients. These I make mostly as commission orders or recovers of existing frames and run this alongside my decorative, handcrafted and vintage homewares business which has been established for almost 20 years.
I'm a lifelong crafter with dressmaking, crochet, upholstery and embroidery among my interests. Lampshade making is my newest passion, using techniques acquired from antique/vintage books after struggling to find lampshades suitable for my collection of vintage and antique lamp bases.
I've been very lucky to have several of my lampshades featured in national glossy publications (including Vogue and the Sunday Times) and I've supplied a number to a TV production company so keeping my eyes peeled for their appearance in the New Year!
Are you a newbie lampshade maker or have you made up a Needcraft Lampshade making kit before?
Whilst I feel accomplished as a traditional (soft-bodied) lampshade maker, I'm relatively new to making solid-sided lampshades. There is very little cross-over in skills between the two types so it’s been a whole new learning curve (supported by all the hints and tips in the Dannells Blog). Winning the #memadeshade Shade competition is a lovely accolade and feels like a seal of approval for my work.
What do you love about the shade you entered for the #memadeshade competition?
This little candle clip is made in a fabric based on a William Morris & Co tapestry, and this deer design has been very popular in the run-up to Christmas. I'm finding that people increasingly like to switch around their décor (including their lampshades) with the seasons which seems a fabulous idea … especially for the lampshade makers out there!
I especially love William Morris fabrics and have crafted with them for many years so they were the obvious choice when I made my first lampshades, indeed my very first commission was in William Morris fabric. The designs are so timeless and can fit into both contemporary or traditional decor schemes with ease. I like to embellish these candle clip shades with trim and beads that catch the light and eye which elevates a simple little lampshade to another level.
What do you like most about the Needcraft lampshade making kits?
The component quality is always dependable and the pre-cut panels are such a time-saver. I'm my only employee and usually, there aren't enough hours in the day, especially this time of year!
Offering solid-sided lampshades to clients in addition to soft-bodied lampshades means that I can offer a wide range of solutions and always have something of the right style, size or budget for them.
I also should add that when I've had several hours of traditional lampshade making (stretching fabric and hand-sewing), it's a joy to roll a lampshade and tuck in edges, it's like yoga after a workout!
Any plans to make more lampshades?
Most definitely. The order book is filling up nicely for 2023, but I hoping to have a little quiet time early in the New Year to try out some new lampshade designs, techniques and ideas.
Take a look at Louise's beautiful range of contemporary and traditional lampshades on her website and give her a friendly follow on her Instagram and facebook pages.
October's Most Liked Shades
As we hunker down for winter our Most Liked Shade makers have brought the outside in, with their naturally inspired shades, but not without a touch of gold for the festive season. Here's what they have to say about their shades:
Always a favourite - love it with the shiny gold interior 💚
Indeed, investing in unique handmade pieces is the best way to transform a dull and boring ambient into vibrant and cozy place. Handmade lampshades in all sizes, shapes and patterns ✨
Made today exclusively for this year's Islay & Jura winter & Christmas Fairs.
First stop for these brand-new Wet Meadow lampshades will be this Saturday at @ardnahoedistillery 3-9pm.
The fabulous staff at @illicitstill_ardnahoe will be serving cocktails, canapés and home baking. So many wonderful makers attending I think it’s going to be THE shopping experience of the season, I can’t wait 😃
New lantern designs of little spotted woodpecker feathers and Alliums are going well at Craft Fairs just enough time to make some more before @wonderworkscontemporarycraft on Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 December in Chagford Village Hall
Enter our #memadeshade competition
It's super simple to enter our #memadeshade Instagram competition. Just make a lampshade from any of our lampshade making kits and follow the steps below. And if you want to check out the hashtag #memadeshade for inspiration in advance, we've had over 5000 shades enter since we started! Here's a reminder of what to do...
Simply take a picture of your proudest lampshade from one of our kits and enter on Instagram following the steps below:
Follow @needcraft if you haven’t already
Post an image of a lampshade you’ve made from an @needcraft lampshade making kit and tag with #memadeshade and the type of kit you used i.e 30cm Drum shade kits, Square kit etc.
And any size and shape can be entered so display those drums shades, exhibit your empires and reveal your rectangles – any lampshade from one of our kits counts!
For full terms and conditions click here.
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