This week’s project is not only fun & lovely, it’s a joint venture between my mother and me!
We took a fairly boring, run of the mill thrift shop lamp and fixed it (and it’s sad, sad, shade) up into something lovely!
Here’s where we started:
And here’s the finished lamp & shade…
Isn’t it lovely?
Here’s how we did it:
The lamp base was Patty’s mom’s first chalk paint project!
- One medium coat Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White – once this coat was done, there was still a bit of brass showing through.
- An hour of dry time.
- Second medium coat of paint (same color) – after this coat the coverage was fairly complete
- One coat clear wax, followed by 30 minutes or so of dry time.
- Next, we mixed together Annie Sloan clear and dark wax – about 3 parts clear wax to one part dark wax. Then we used a cloth to rub the darker mixture into the surface. Since we were massaging it in, we didn’t follow up with a buffing like we normally do.
- Next was a treatment with sandpaper to remove some of the paint and wax and let the brass show through.
- Final coat of the clear and dark wax mixture – just rub in until it stopped feeling super tacky and had the right look.
For this project we used a vintage drum shade, covered in vellum. This particular shade has the vertical wire brackets (new shades normally don’t have those.) We left the original shade as-in and just made a slipcover for it.
Even though this looks like a drum shade (same circumference on the top as the bottom) it’s NOT… and we have one ill-fitting shade cover to prove it! Since it’s really a cone shape (more narrow at the top) I made a template of the shade to use as a pattern piece. Just lay the shade on its side on a piece of wrapping paper (I keep kraft paper in the house for pattern making) Starting at the seam, use a pencil to trace the bottom edge with a pencil while rolling the shade. Stop when you get back to the seam, then re-line the seam and shade up at the beginning and trace along the top in the same way. Use a ruler to connect the lines at the beginning and end. Cut and pin to your fabric.
Here’s what mine looked like:
You can see that I left a bit of fabric along each edge. If you want to cover your shade tightly, you’ll need to leave at least 1/4 – 1/2″ for seam allowances and to wrap around the top and bottom of the shade. I wanted my shade cover to look a bit relaxed, so I left a bit more.
Next I serged along each edge to give it a finished look. If you don’t have a serger, turn and stitch. If you don’t have a sewing machine, you could use Wonder Tape (an adhesive fabric tape) or hot glue to turn and hold the edges.
Since I serged the edges, I wanted that to show, so I wrapped my shade and pinned in place and stitched with a zig-zag stitch over the serged line. If I wanted to hide the edges, then it would have been careful holding and pinning, then stitching right sides together to close up the seam along the short ends.
Tip – I used clothespins to hold the shade in place while I was fussing. I stacked up a couple canisters to set the shade on top of it so the bottom edge hung free.
Once I got it where I wanted it, I just stitched some vintage crocheted trim along the bottom edge. I added it to the inside – I wanted it to ‘peek’ out and not be too obvious – plus I like the look of the zig zag stitches I used on the outside of the shade! I also didn’t quite make the edges match to add to the ‘homemade-tailored’ look.